An Evening in the Shop #1: Homemade Knobs and Handles

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Blog entry by ChunkyC posted 10-29-2010 04:43 AM 2382 reads 3 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of An Evening in the Shop series Part 2: Flattening Boards »

I make nearly all of knobs and handles for shop jigs and fixtures in the shop.

(clicking the picture will open a full sized version)

I’ve made small ones:

Large ones:

and tonight, Wing Nuts.

The design came from ShopNotes 29 (I think it was issue 29). I’ve been wanting to make some of these for a very long time but just never got around to it. I save a lot of the small cutoffs of hard wood that I generate in the shop. I have a five gallon bucket that is overflowing with nothing but walnut scrapes, all less than 18” long. So tonight I decided that I was going to make some wing nuts.

Dims: 3-1/2” x 1” x 1” walnut

I started by gluing up a couple of strips of walnut from the bucket. Once the glue was set up, I ran it through the planer to get it to 1” square. I started by setting the depth, run the piece through, turn it 90 degrees and run it through again. Then I lowered the head, turned it 90 degrees, ran it through, turned it, another pass and so on until I got to 1.0050” Close enough for me!

Next I cut the wing nut blanks to length. Then over to the drill press table to drill the 1” relief hole in the top and the 11/32” through hole for the threaded insert.

Next I made and mounted a fixture to my adjustable tenoning jig to hold the small blanks.

Here is the fixture opened up to show how the wing nut fits into the fixture. All you have to do is drop the blank into the fixture, close it up and snug it down.
The jig is the one that has been in about all of the magazines. Although I modified mine when I made it by adding T-Slots so that I could add fixtures to the jig and use it for more than just cutting tenons. Works pretty good and makes tenons quite easily.

I then cut all of the tappers on the sides of the blanks at 11 degrees then moved the blade to 17 degrees and cut the angled reliefs on the bottom of the blanks. All that’s left now is to insert the threaded inserts and a little sanding to knock off the sharp edges.

I discovered that if I counter sunk the threaded hole a little, the insert would set flush with the bottom of the wing nut, else it stood a little proud. Although a little proud is not a bad thing.

This was fairly lengthy endeavor. All in all it took me about 2-1/2 hours to make 3 wing nuts. Next batch will go much faster as I wont have to build the fixture. I did modify my fixture about half way through because using the 7/16” wrench to loosen and tighten the 1/4”x20 fixture bolts was getting OLD!

I have a piece of walnut that I cut into the shape a hexagon for something once. I just cut off a 2” piece and made a handle. I used a T-Nut first and it cracked it all to pieces so I re-drilled and added a threaded insert. Only to find that the insert threads sits far enough inside that it wouldn’t grab the T-Bolt! Back to the drill press and bore a 1” hole about 1/2” deep. Fixed and working great now.

Threaded insert came from McMaster-Carr 92105A100 ZINC-ALLOY KNIFE-THREAD INSERT FOR WOOD, HEX DRIVE,W/FLANGE, 1/4”-20 INTERNAL THRD, 33/64”L $14.03US / Pack.

-- Chunk's Workshop pictures:

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