I decided to quit putting off some of the bigger projects taking up space in my shop. I chose to work on finishing up my mom's bench. I wanted to route a decorative edge on the seat part of the bench so I set up my new router and was about to go to work, when I decided I should probably test out the settings and the router on a less expensive piece of wood since I'd never used this router before. I found a small piece of scrap wood and did some routing on the sides of it, adjusted some settings and then I was able to successfully finish the edge on my mom's bench. I was then looking at the test piece of wood and thought I should at least do all the edges of it while the router still had the same setup so I went around the whole outside of it so I could use it for something down the line. After it was done though, I remembered my older sister wanting an egg holder and now I had all the things I needed to make it so I went ahead with that project. I picked up an adjustable hole cutter when I got my drill press, so I was able to use that to make the correct size holes for the eggs. The hole cutter was a bit of a pain to use but I got six holes cut, was looking at it and decided to put two more holes in between the six to make better use of the space. This was a bit of a downfall. The hole cutter loosened and chopped up the edges of the hole I was cutting. I thought maybe I could eliminate that when I routed a soft edge on the holes, and fixed the cutter and drilled the last hole. Then I routed the holes so they had a nice rounded edge but it didn't really remove where the cutter chewed up the wood when it came apart, so I changed my plan of staining it, put a little putty to cover up the mess, and painted it instead. The offending hole isn't perfect. I could have spent more time on it and made it better, but a finished project is better than one that hangs around and takes up space, never to be touched for months. I'm learning to allow for less than perfect on my projects mostly so they get finished and so I don't drive myself crazy. I realized when it was all done, the only tools I used on this project were the three new ones I purchased and it fit right in with Easter coming up.
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
My nephew's fourth birthday is coming up and I'v known for a long time that I had to make him a toolbox. He's always asking me what I'm doing in the shop. I'll be working and he'll open the garage door and ask, "is it going to be loud". Even if it is loud and scary sometimes he'll stay and wear ear protection and watch what I'm working on. I foresee a lot of making in his future so I knew he'd like his own toolbox. His other aunt had given him some tools and similar things for his birthday or Christmas a few years ago but his mother didn't think he could use them yet so she stored them away until he was old enough. We decided to put them together and give them to him as a set. Yet another aunt paid for the wood to build the toolbox so this actually works out to be a three aunt operation spanning both sides of his family.
Sunday, March 22, 2015
Yep, we finally hit the big one 11 million dollars... if we'd only gotten that last number. Womp womp. We did win a little bit of money though and we decided to use some for bills, my husbands mission trip, and some for mad money. The way we've lived for the past five or six years has been deliberately budgeted to get us out of debt. We were pretty close until all my medical bills started pilling up but it is what it is and there's no use crying about it. At least we weren't so far in debt before that we were put way back by recent events. Anyway, that style of living means you might like that shirt at the store but it stays on the rack, the extra snacks at the grocery store don't make it into your cart, dinner out comes few and far between meals at home, and entertainment usually consists of Netflix or Xbox. As you can imagine this gets old. It's easier for me because I'm a saver, but my husband is a spender so if we get a little unexpected money it's nice to break away from the usual don't buy it mentality and get a few nice things. I agonized over whether or not to get one cool tool that I've always wanted like a lathe but as lumber prices get higher I don't think I could afford the hardwoods that I would need if I wanted to turn anything. In the end I decided to go with a drill press, router, and random orbital sander. Between Harbor Freight and Home Depot, I was able to get all three and router bits with my allotted share of the winnings. Here are some pics of my haul.
Friday, March 20, 2015
I've been working on a bathroom storage case for my little sister. It basically goes in the bathroom and holds any additional necessities. The plans came from Shanty2Chic and you can find them here if your interested: Shanty2Chic bathroom storage case plans. I changed them a bit to fit an inexpensive mirror that you can find at most department stores. My sister is going to stain and finish it so this is as far as it got on my end.
Here it is before I installed the mirror, it still looks pretty good without the mirror, but obviously a lengthy mirror adds to it's usefulness.
Here's how I installed the back panel that I attached the mirror to. I only have four clamps and actually I stole them from my dad so I don't own any clamps, but this job required a lot more clamps. I got around it by pressure fitting boards against the backer board. I also cut some plastic piping into slices and then cutting through those slices on one side. Those are the black circles you see in the picture. These clamps actually worked really well, the thicker you slice them the more spring back they have and the harder they hold.
Here you can see the shelves on the inside of the case. All the little wood shavings are from planing down the sides to make the door fit the case.
And a view from the back of the case. Here you can see the back boards that you use to attach it to the wall.
I'll post pics later when it's all stained, finished and installed.
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
We finally got a new printer. I could no longer repair the old one when little bits of plastic start breaking off the ink holder. Anyway, that means I could print the labels for the TARDIS pencil holder. I just found some off the internet and re-sized them. Then I used decoupage glue to adhere them since it tends not to wrinkle the paper as much if used thinly. It's all finished now and being put to use on our desk. I should retouch some areas with blue paint but it's not that noticeable if you don't pick it up and exam it so I'll probably leave it.
Friday, March 6, 2015
I like to make little projects in between waiting on something for bigger projects, just to keep busy and also to have something to put on the blog at regular intervals. This week I needed a pencil holder for the shop. I could have made a square holder and left it at that, but I really wanted little things that I love to show up around the shop. So, I decided to make it into a TARDIS. For those of you who don't know a TARDIS is, it's a Time And Relative Dimension In Space ship from the show Doctor Who. If you haven't seen the show I envy you because you can now go and discover a whole new universe of awesomeness and brilliant storytelling. Anyway, I started with four pieces of plywood. Ignore the sizes in the picture I had it in my head that it would create a square but I ended up cutting the two bigger pieces thinner to match the width of the smaller two pieces.
Then I glued and nailed them together.
I then cut out a square to make a bottom, glued and nailed it into place.
Next came the trim. I cut these mostly with my miter box and hand saw.
I glued the trim on the other sides and did them all the same as the first side.
I have a lot of leftover TARDIS blue paint from the memorial bench project, so it got a few coats.
I then added some details with paint and a blue sharpie.
I was hoping to have it done today but I think I'm gonna have to print out the rest of the details and glue them on because I couldn't find a white paint pen today and I'll have to do that at my sister's house. I'll be sure to post pictures of it when it's all done but I really wanted to get a post up today so this is the stage it's at now. I also decided that I didn't want to hide it away in the garage so It's getting top billing on the desk in the living room and the tiki pencil holder I have there now will be used in the garage. I made the tiki pencil holder as well when I was in high school so it will still add a little of my work in the garage as I had originally intended. Here's the tiki pencil holder because I know I've piqued your interest.
I just noticed that I haven't made a post on the memorial bench project so I'll get pictures and the story behind it up here soon.