Making a lathe stand (part 1)

February 25, 2015 0 Comments

Last weekend I acquired a Jet 1221VS. While I’ve already played with it quite a bit, I need to build a proper stand for it before I can do any real work. Since floor space it at a premium in my shop, and I wanted the stand to be quick to build, I decided to make a trestle style stand for it.  I’m going to use 8/4 hard maple for the stand, since I have a lot of it on hand, and it’s a strong durable wood. Since I might buy a bed extension at some point in the future, I decided to keep the stand modular. Thus, the stand will be held together with bolts like a  bed is.

Thanks to mother nature keeping the temperature in my shop in the low 30’s, the only things I’ve gotten done so far is dimensioning the stock, and making the mortise template shown below. Thankfully it’s supposed to warm up over the next few days, so I should be able to make some substantial progress.


Making a large crosscut sled

February 17, 2015 0 Comments

Five years ago I built a giant crosscut sled for my old saw based on some plans I found in Fine Woodworking.  It was an accurate sled, but it had a few deficiencies I wanted to improve on this time around.  It could cross cut work pieces up to 42″ wide, but in 5 years I’ve never cut anything wider than 32″. So, while the extra capacity was theoretically a good thing, it let to a sled that was heavy and cumbersome to use. The weight issue was magnified because I used 3/4″ MDF for the base, because that’s what the plans called for.

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Starrett poster frame

February 10, 2015 0 Comments

Last night I finished another little shop improvement project, a frame for my Starrett poster. Other than the Lexan protecting the poster, the frame cost nothing to make, as it’s made from scrap hard maple and plywood. The finish is my favorite quick to apply finish, two coats of Watco Danish oil. The only thing I should have done differently, was use Plexiglass, because real Lexan was a lot more expensive than I remember it being.

If you’re into machining, and you don’t already have a poster, I highly recommend you pick one up,  as you can get it for free from Starrett if you make an account with them.

Mirror frame

February 2, 2015 0 Comments

The final 2014 Christmas present I had to make, was a frame for a new entry mirror. Since I was going to use some notoriously difficult to work species, I decided I would document the built. The Body of the frame is Wenge, and the keys are made from some Gaboon Ebony I pull out for special projects. I’ve used the combination of Wenge and Gaboon before, but not on the scale of this project, and I have to say I really love The way it turned out. As a side note, hopefully this video is a little better than the last one.

change gear holder

January 20, 2015 0 Comments

The other night I was working on a project in the shop, and since I finished what I was working on early I decided to make something to organize my lathes change gears. Making stuff like this is why I love owning and using tools. I started with a rough idea, and just made everything else up as I went along. In less than an hour, I had made something that fixed an issue that’s been nagging for as long as I’ve owned the lathe (10 years).

change gear holder