Finished the rocking horse! Or at least declared it done…
Things I learned:
- Fir is soft. Really soft. Soft enough that I was a fool to think that stain was the right solution to sub-optimal wood, ‘cause I’ve got a chip or two already, and a few years of a kid beating on it will change things dramatically.
- Shellac is shiny, and plays heck with wood glue adhesion. Luckily I had a big bottle of gap-filling cyanoacrylate.
- Take the time to build the jigs to get things right, rather than trying to fix it with sanding. There will be more rocking horses, but there’ll be a set of jigs and patterns on which I can use router bearing bits made first.
- The shape of the rockers is okay, but I should probably experiment a bit. From an aesthetic and “ways that kids can rework a toy” aspect I don’t necessarily like the rockerless horses (the ones that hang from a frame), but they may have better action.
- Don’t let the project size get away from me. This is physically bigger than I’d envisioned when I first started laying out the patterns. One out of 4/4 or even 3/4” lumber, ala Alan’s rocking horse from a few days ago, would probably be a good starter horse.
-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California, http://www.flutterby.net/User:DanLyke