Measure and calculate twice

March 27, 2015 0 Comments

Just about everyone has heard the proverb measure twice and cut once. I’ve followed it religiously since I started woodworking, and because of it I’ve made very few mistakes over the years. I’ve had very little time in the shop over the last couple weeks, do work and personal obligations. When I finally made it into the shop the other night, i was rushing, as I wanted to make some real progress on my current project. As I mentions in my last post, I’ve been making little plywood storage boxes. I’d just finished a box, and decided to check how it’s future resident would fit. As you can see below, it didn’t.

undersized box

After several minutes of cursing, head scratching, and double checking I figured out what went wrong. In my haste, I had screwed up my length calculations. Instead of adding the thickness of the ends (3/8″) to the get the length of the sides, I added the thickness of the rabbets (1/8″). Thus I think proverb needs an amendment, Measure and calculate twice and cut once.

Posted in: General

It’s almost spring right?

March 19, 2015 0 Comments

I took a small break over the last two weeks, as I’d reached the point of not wanting to go into the shop because of how cold it was. Thankfully Spring looks to be here, as we hit the 60’s earlier in the week. Thus, I was able to get some significant shop time over the last couple of evening. I spent a good deal of time experimenting with hot hide glue. Unfortunately my shop is still to cool to go reliable glue-ups every time, so I’m going to use liquid hide glue instead.

Below are some teaser photos from my next project video. Basically I’m going to show how to quickly make storage boxes for metalworking tools. I’m going to go over some of the things you need to consider when storing unprotected metal for long periods of time in close proximity to wood.

Making a lathe stand (part 2)

March 3, 2015 0 Comments

Despite mother nature and old man winters concerted attempts to keep me out of the shop, I was able to finish the lathe stand this weekend. Despite some minor issue during the build, I’m very happy with how it turned out. As you can see below, it’s just 8 boards held together with bolts and dry mortise and tenon joinery.


parts ready for assembly

Instead of using cross dowels to hold the parts together like you would typically find in bed frame construction, I decided to use a slot and a standard bolt. The primary reason for this, was because I couldn’t find large cross dowels locally, and everything online seemed overly expensive. If I ever get around to making a bed, I’m probably going to use this method. Besides being cheap, it offers a lot more options with regards to bolt size and composition.

Continue Reading…

Posted in: Power Tool Woodworking
Part of the Project

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.


Posted in: Power Tool Woodworking
Part of the Project

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.

Continue Reading…