Ok…I’m not a blogger….never claimed to be…just thought I would post some of my shop adventures here. I’m a refinisher, but have been playing around with a few side projects to keep my mind sharp, and possibly make a little money on the side…maybe…one never knows.
So today I was up and down in the shop a little early. The new pup is pretty good about the loud noises…he helped me use my planer last night to make a bunch of new shavings for his little backyard area that doubles as my finish area….(one of these days when I hit the big time, I’ll have to invest in a spray booth…but until then, it’s outside for me…) I had found a nice little plan to make a box online http://www.finewoodworking.com/FWNPDFfree/99928091.pdf and thought, “Hey…I could make that…”.
I find interesting pallets, break them down and plane them….not fun, but at least free, and I’ve found some interesting wood…found some walnut the other day that was so hidden in grunge, I didn’t even realize what I had until I planed it!!
Anyhoo…I started out the day by making up a spline joint jig…easy peasy….scrap wood is my friend. The sides of the box went together nice and quick, cut the spline grooves (jig worked awesome), fit the base into the groove that I put in the sides, and all was right with the world. While the spline pieces were gluing in, I decided to start on the lid.
I thought things were going well, but as some things do, the top was going pear shaped and I was blissfully unaware…ok…try again….damn pears….try again…dang it…went through all the spare 3/4” mahogany, a nice piece of teak and then tried a piece of walnut…..I checked for square, checked my router settings, measured at least fifty times, and it was still not doing what it was supposed to do…kept going out of alignment and the router was removing too much so that it fit too loose in the base, and the angles were taking off too much near the base of the top and not giving a pleasing look when the box was together.
As you are probably aware, Steve Jobs passed recently, so there has been a lot about him on the news….so I had this stuck in my head about how he kept saying to think differently. Well…I figured if I was screwing up the directions so much…I should just get rid of the directions…..I ended up cutting a piece to fit the top opening pretty snug and then just shaved and sanded off the mistake from the bottom of one of the mahogany pieces, glued the new snug fitting piece on dead center and poof…lid that not only fits, but looks correct….
Ok…I know I cheated a bit, but it works…at least for now…next time I’ll triple check again and see if the same thing happens….but I have another box plan in mind that I may try tomorrow.
Things I’ll do different: use router bit to make the chamfer edges on the top, use higher contrast wood for the splines, not waste all day making one friggin little box….well…maybe the last one will happen again…that’s half the fun after all…=0)
Currently that is just a little side project…I have two mini coffins (toe pincher caskets) that are getting their seal coat, and I need to make up a few more of those before Halloween…also have an idea for a larger coffin (about three feet) that I can make into a beast in a box type of banging prop for my store window….I’ll post more on those later…
Please understand that this blog may be more for me to figure out stuff than whether or not I get feedback…but if you do have feedback…try and keep it constructive…the refinishing is my business, but the building aspect is just a side thing…not my specialty….and the wonky nature of the lid is just the latest in a long line of reasons that I don’t actually build a lot….I’m just better at the refinishing!!
-- Sue (Susan) Mad Jester Woodworks, "Not what I have, but what I do is my kingdom" Thomas Carlyle