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Thread: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

  1. #1
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    Default Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    what is the definitive resource for using french curves?

    of all the years I have drawn and done layout I have used small freehand, a series of plotted points, mismatched french curves, illustrator and lately a CAD app. I’d like to return to smaller hand patterns and paper for art and design. Was wondering what is the best reference for someone who wanted to understand the therory and the art of using the curves.
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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    I've bought from these guys, had good service and the product is ok.
    http://www.alvindrafting.com/templates/

    John Welsford
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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Hoppe View Post
    what is the definitive resource for using french curves?
    I have a set of French curves and I have an abacus. I didn't know they still make either.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    There's some french curves at work at the moment. But its her accent that really bowls me over.
    Philip K. Dick — 'Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away'.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    I think you may be making this more complex than it is. I've written computer programs 35 years ago to generate a "curve-fit" equation for a set of points, that's complicated. Using a french curve, you rotate/flip the curve to line up with three points and draw the line, (hmm, spanning all three points or just two, dang, now you have me wondering, it's been too long since I've been on a board!), advance the curve one point and repeat as necessary.
    Last edited by Bob (oh, THAT Bob); 03-14-2019 at 09:38 PM.
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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns


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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by lupussonic View Post
    Cartoon: Two men standing in front of a house numbered 11235. One says to the other, "Oh, this must be Fibonacci's place." - From Oh! Pascal!, a book about the programming language, filled with geeky anecdotes.
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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Nosce te ipsum

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    Thomas E. French's book Engineering Drawing. Look for an older... say, pre-1970s... edition.

    Standard text for decades.

    https://www.amazon.com/Engineering-D.../dp/B000E5WHES

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Thomas Chippendale's book The Gentleman and Cabinet Makers Director has a treatise on the classical orders in the opening chapter and if you study the drawings in that section you can find the proportional layout for almost any curve or spiral. For me these illustrations with the various proportional layout made it a cinch to understand.
    see also; https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euler_spiral

    I found the instructions in French's book a little difficult to grasp, they were better understood after studying Chippendale. (There are better explanations of how to layout these curves.)


    I think a full set of carving gouges will also make these curves or scrolls



    edit; Dover has an inexpensive copy of Chippendale and they can be found used on Amazon for under $10

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    I just ordered both books. Thank you so much!
    A large nose is the mark of a witty, courteous, affable, generous and liberal man. My feature suggests an excellent side kick of good index.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Hi Ted, thats a coincidence: I just got a set Kopenhagen curves offered by Klaas Bes, designer of the 'Lucia', who is moving to a smaller apartment. Students of yacht design dont seem to use them anymore, and I hope I will find use for them. In the past I used a flexible curve for short curves like fram and thin battens from a model workshop for waterlines and diagonals. So you are in yacht design now? Frank

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Old Dryfoot View Post
    In order to ensure that there is no unfairness at every third point, move the curve two, not three points each time and fit to three or four points. Be aware that your points might not be on a fair curve, so be prepared to average the line by having an equal number of points on both sides of the final line.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Ted, I hope that you have a decent set of curves, not the crappy ones intended for use by school kids.
    I bought mine from a good shop specializing in technical instruments, the box has the government broad arrow cut into its lid. The contents of the box is similar to this set: https://www.artistcraftsman.com/fren...e-set-8pc.html but without any "inking edges." I find that only two or three of the curves get regular use, that will depend on the nature of the drawings that you will be working on.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Really appreciate the guidance you all are providing. There are two sets of curves I want to use. One is more engineering oriented and one is more design/art/clothing oriented. I am currently really enjoying drawing and painting - the curves will help me get more exact with those nautical and vehicle oriented pieces I aspire to do. The second is is for clothing applications where I am combining art forms to make unique one of a kind pendants, jumpers and interpretive historical reproductions.

    I am picking up a decent drafting table off craig’s list (bargin) which can be broken down and stored. I have just got a new old set of drawing tools and will get modern graduated curving forms as I need.

    C557EA8A-5DE7-4A45-908F-5E9D3BDA0910.jpg
    8A2404D4-803F-4CE1-9687-AEEC72B51D3D.jpg

    9E1D2B25-B994-43E8-A278-F311698A30D6.jpg
    Last edited by Ted Hoppe; 03-15-2019 at 12:45 PM.
    A large nose is the mark of a witty, courteous, affable, generous and liberal man. My feature suggests an excellent side kick of good index.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Nice instruments and nice curves. Now throw that lead filled plastic covered abortion away.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Nice instruments and nice curves. Now throw that lead filled plastic covered abortion away.
    Didn’t think about the the lead bag! I think I will make a nice dovetail feltlined box for these tools.
    A large nose is the mark of a witty, courteous, affable, generous and liberal man. My feature suggests an excellent side kick of good index.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Hoppe View Post
    Didn’t think about the the lead bag! I think I will make a nice dovetail feltlined box for these tools.
    Cross purposes Ted, I meant that coiled up "Flexible Curve" thing in the bottom image.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    My Dad was a wood carver.

    When he started his training his boss stumped up for a full set of drawing instuments. They cost a fortune and my father paid them off each weeks for several years.

    My fathjer complained bitterly for years because the way he was taught and practised his carving was to use the human form to get curves and shapes.

    I was sometimes allowed to get the set out and trace shapes and try to draw a picture just using the curves and geometric shapes.

    My father considered them toys or tools for draftsmen. he did not use a technical drawing for his work, often it was a drawing and rough with it.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    I agree, toss the lead coil. But boy those pix sure bring back some memories. Not necessarily fond. Are you planning on inking with those crab claws in the green box? Or do you have a nice set of Rapidograph pens?

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Hoppe View Post
    Really appreciate the guidance you all are providing. There are two sets of curves I want to use. One is more engineering oriented and one is more design/art/clothing oriented. I am currently really enjoying drawing and painting - the curves will help me get more exact with those nautical and vehicle oriented pieces I aspire to do. The second is is for clothing applications where I am combining art forms to make unique one of a kind pendants, jumpers and interpretive historical reproductions.

    I am picking up a decent drafting table off craig’s list (bargin) which can be broken down and stored. I have just got a new old set of drawing tools and will get modern graduated curving forms as I need.

    C557EA8A-5DE7-4A45-908F-5E9D3BDA0910.jpg
    8A2404D4-803F-4CE1-9687-AEEC72B51D3D.jpg

    9E1D2B25-B994-43E8-A278-F311698A30D6.jpg
    Dude! I could have given you a bunch of stuff. And a box!

    You posted a pic of my drawing tools, but with a less worn out case. Hahaha. I still have curves and circles and a few shields, I think. I have a few pencils, and leads... No more trees and chairs and light pools, but I still got the basics...

    Ah, well.

    Peace,
    Robert

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    I had forgotten about the Ames Lettering Guide. And somewhere in the basement I probably still have a K&E electric eraser. You know you are really old when skills you spent years learning are now considered a lost art to be revived as a hobby.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    "Many a time freedom has been rolled back - and always for the same sorry reason: fear." - Molly Ivins

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by ron ll View Post
    I had forgotten about the Ames Lettering Guide. And somewhere in the basement I probably still have a K&E electric eraser. You know you are really old when skills you spent years learning are now considered a lost art to be revived as a hobby.
    I still have some lettering stencils. Never needed an electric eraser. Just sayin
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    I still have some lettering stencils. Never needed an electric eraser. Just sayin
    Nor would have I, had clients not changed their minds.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by ron ll View Post
    Nor would have I, had clients not changed their minds.
    Not too much of a problem in hull form design.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    You must have been blessed with the clients you had, Nick. My favourite line from a client when discussing what he wanted in his next boat was, "George's boat is perfect - I want mine exactly like his, except I want it four feet longer, three feet wider, and drop the keel enough to fit a prop twelve inches bigger. But exactly like George's boat."

    Fortunately, by the time he came along, I was no longer drawing boats with pencils.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: Where can I find out more about french curves & isometric patterns

    Quote Originally Posted by mmd View Post
    You must have been blessed with the clients you had, Nick. My favourite line from a client when discussing what he wanted in his next boat was, "George's boat is perfect - I want mine exactly like his, except I want it four feet longer, three feet wider, and drop the keel enough to fit a prop twelve inches bigger. But exactly like George's boat."

    Fortunately, by the time he came along, I was no longer drawing boats with pencils.
    That is the difference between fishermen and competent customers who relied on a sound specification to be delivered by the shipyard.
    Case in point. Sea trials of HMS Wave Knight in the Clyde, doing Zig Zag and turning circle manoeuvres. A panicky exchange between a small fishing vessel and the port authorities along the lines of: "There is this big grey ship trying to run me down. It is coming around again for another try." Obviously Wave Knight was displaying all the correct signal shapes and so on.

    Mind you he was probably referring to the fullness of the bow, amount of flare and rise of floor, firmness of the bilge and so on. A simple scaling exercise of Georges boats lines would have sufficed. The Coble fishermen of the Yorkshire and Northumbrian coast were like that. The builder will have been asked to copy such and such a coble but increase the beam by . . and the length of the ram (keel plank) by whatever.
    Last edited by Peerie Maa; 03-15-2019 at 05:47 PM.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    I dunno. Maybe porn moyeu.

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