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A few pointers from the pros

A few pointers from the pros, Cape Cod HOME | capecodlife.com

Robert S. Jordan

“I get to use my blacksmith creativity”

In a quarter-century of crafting weathervanes, Robert S. Jordan of Orleans says the piece he considers his favorite is a 16-inch gull-wing Mercedes, which he fashioned from copper and stainless steel. “It was complicated,” Jordan recalls of the project, which he made for a builder to place atop a cupola on a client’s pool house. “I had to make a steel mandrel to get the basic shape of the body. And then I had to attach little detail pieces on the sides and make bumpers and headlights.”

Jordan, whose orders are all commissioned, receives requests for all sorts of sculptures. “I make anything,” he says. That includes a burly bison the artisan is currently working on which, when finished, will stand 22 inches tall and stretch 40 inches from end to end. It’s the largest weathervane he has ever made. “It’s unique,” Jordan says, “I’ve never seen a bison weathervane before.” In Native American folklore, bison are often associated with protection, or can symbolize strength or prosperity. Jordan says the customer who commissioned the piece is planning to install it on the roof of his new house for good luck.

When making these instruments, Jordan does not use molds or commercial products, but shapes the individual pieces by hand to create finished products that are truly one of a kind. A native of Chatham, Jordan has been working with metal for 45 years, and the techniques he has learned over the years have helped perfect his weathervane-making technique. “I get to use my blacksmith creativity to make them,” he says. “Each one is different, so it requires a lot of design and creativity to make it come out the way you want. It’s a challenge, but I enjoy it.”

For more information on the artisan, call 774-722-2875, or visit robertsjordan.com



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