Archive for the ‘Shop notes’ Category

The box

Friday, February 2nd, 2018

I dug a piece of 1 x 10 out of the old chicken coop for a project, not really sure what project. As I attempted to remove some of the peeling paint off one side, I discovered something interesting.

Beneath the really heavy layer of yellow paint was another layer of red, which I can only surmise was either primer or stain. Once I got the stain off, I discovered that this old board was actually something more like hardwood than the pine I was expecting. The center was a light color and the outer edges look like walnut or some other brown colored wood. I could guess that the boards might be cherry or maybe even some sort of nut.box1

I had quite a time with the paint heat gun and an a spatula, finally drug out Dad’s old Sears belt sander, hooked up the vacuum and went to town. By the time I got that side stripped, I was pretty sure that this board needed a special project. I coated the wood with linseed oil, let it set and proceeded to apply several coats of clear water based varathane.

In the back of my mind, I was deciding to make a trash can for the living room, something you use most days and a regular furniture piece for the room. I did not want to cut any of the beautiful brown wood off the edges. My thought was to add vertical strips on each corner and cut dados and wood strips to join the corners. The board was long enough to make 12 inch sides and use the remaining piece for the bottom.

The size kind of got away from me, and my beloved thinks it is too massive for a trash can. In the spirit of usefulness, she suggested we might use it to hold a plant. I think that might be just grand.

Here are a couple shots of the finished product:



box1_smaller         box2_small

I really like the contrast between the brown and light. The background on the second shot was messy, so I had a little gimp cleanup to do.

Originally I was just going to leave the old yellow paint on the inside,

but I could not stand to hide that beautiful wood.

Here is a shot nearly finished on the workbench:




New Lathe

Friday, February 2nd, 2018


I finally got around to purchasing a replacement lathe. My old lathe was just too big for my little shop. I attempted to make a lathe out of various bits and pieces, and even turned a couple items with the lathe, but holding the work was sketchy at best.

The new lathe is smaller, a 10 x 18 1/2 hp lathe from Harbor Freight. Considering the source, it is actually pretty nice.

When I got it home, I unpacked it right away and turned it on and investigated to make sure it would suit my purposes.

In order to get it off my workbench, I made a quick stand out of a couple lengths of 2 x 10 by cutting ‘finger joints’ by a combination of scroll saw, band saw, jigsaw and chiseling. Still yet to create/design are shelves or drawers to hold the supplies.

I turned a top (of course) and a couple flat bowls just to investigate how it works.

Knitting needles

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

My latest shop project is a set of circular knitting needles for my wife. I turned the kneedles from a bit of bamboo that I ripped down to a small piece. After smoothing the ends, I attached flexible plastic to the ends with a little nail (head cut off) and superglue. The kneedles are a size 6 with a total length of 16″ including the plastic string.

The chickens will come to roost

Saturday, July 25th, 2009

At long last I have completed the nesting box for the chicken coop, the last step to make their lives complete. It took me a while to get back at it, but now it is done, and it is nice.  It hangs off a slanted board that holds it tight to the wall and has a hinged lid to open to get eggs and clean out the nesting material.  Now I can finish the siding on that side and it will be a beautiful thing to behold. I was worried about insulating it and making the lid so it would open completely, but neither seems to be a challenge. No insulation, this is a summer nesting box, made mainly of plywood. It also happens that the lid won’t open up fully because it runs into the roof before it gets that far. I figure if it gets too cold, I can take the nesting box off and insulate that side a make a simple nesting box inside for the winter.

Caleb and the kids came over and helped and Theresa took the kids to the library in the bike trailer. Fun times!

New chipper

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

I went down to Puyallup to pick up a new Jimna Chipper to put on the John Deere. It will chip up larger branches than my old shredder. Now I have no fear of the piles of brush that get generated when I take down trees for my projects. It is really quiet!

The wood pile

Sunday, October 12th, 2008

I worked on the wood pile today. I found lots of interesting plum wood out there and cut up some to investigate the spalting possiblities. My grandson helped me move it further to the back to make room for a tool shed that I am building behind the chicken coop. Once the tool shed is moved from it’s current location to the new home I will have room to build a new roof to cover my large pile of turning wood.
Then, I will have dry wood to work on in the shop to make new and exciting projects.