It never does end, does it? I’m talking about shop maintenance. Whether it be moving tools, fixing tools, repurposing tools, sharpening tools, or whatever, it never ends.
With that thought, I thought I’d share a few things I’ve been working on recently.
Some time ago I built a box joint machine that was designed by Stumpy Nubs. If you didn’t see it, that post can be seen here. Anyway, I have used that machine a lot since then. I mean, if you keep up with any of my projects, you know there has been a LOT of fingers cut with that machine.
Well, I have had a problem with the machine the last few times I’ve used it. It has a quick release mechanism on it that is accomplished with the use of a connecting bolt that was cut in half. This left only half the threads of it in contact with the treaded rod that runs through the machine. It seems the more I used it, the looser it has gotten. It needed some tightening somehow.
Well, I gave this some thought. I realized that I never used the quick release function anyway. It just seemed easy enough to me to crank it back. Mostly this is because I usually have it cranked all the way back before I remember that it has a quick release machanism. So my thought was to remove the half bolt and replace it with a complete bolt. This would eliminate the possibility of it skipping teeth, which it has done recently and cause me to mess up a couple of joints.
Upon attempting to disassembly the machine though, I ran into more problem. It wouldn’t come apart. I used screws and Gorilla Wood Glue when I built it. There is this one thing about Gorilla Wood glue. It is good. It is good enough that wood won’t come apart, even when you want it to.
So, instead, I decided on a more jury rigged fix. I unthreaded the rod on the far right end of the machine, threaded the new connecting nut about midways of the rod. Then I raised the old half nut of the quick release and set it down on top of the new nut. I placed an old leather tool belt under all this to help prevent a fire, and welded the half nut on top of the new nut.
I could have done this at any time. Today though, I was trying to cut some box joints for a friend of mine. It was in some very large panels compared to what I normally do on this. It also was in some plywood that I knew would be costly to replace. So I decded to go ahead and do this before cutting those joints so I could rest assured there wouldn’t be any mishaps.
The repair worked nicely. I only caught the underside of the sliding carriage on fire. It was only a small fire and was put out easily. As you can see though, the machine now cuts joints that are as tight as when I first built it.
Next up is my ongoing band saw adventure.
Here are my two 16” shop built band saws. The one closest to the camera is the one I keep a thin blade on and do curved cuts on. The one in the distance keeps a resaw blade it and is used strictly for resawing.
That left me with the Craftsman 12”. I was going to give this saw to a friend of mine. I reconsidered though because of an idea I had. First of all, this saw was never a good saw anyway and I was scared I’d only be pawning my frustration with this saw off on my friend. Also, I had an idea. This is an idea that I’ve actually drawn out on paper, so it is going to be a doozy. I plan on turning this into a planer blade sharpener for my electric planer knives. I’ll also use it as a strip sander as well. Before you think I’m completely crazy, this saw says on the side of it Band Saw/Sander. Sears, for years, sold the 1/2×80” belts for it. They can still be bought from other sources now. So it works as a sander.
I had everything I needed to turn it into a sander except for the metal platen that goes behind the belt. That part, unfortunately, is now unavailable. That would be a problem, except I’m a wood worker. I said to myself, “self, if you can build a bandsaw out of wood, you can surely make this little part”.
I moved the saw to a table that was already in the rear of the shop where I wanted the saw to be at. Then I made a wooden platen for it based on photos I found online of the part.
Next up, I decided I wanted to turn a bowl. I recently turned a bowl for my second marble machine. Ever since, I have been wanting to play around with turning bowls. I ran into some problems there though. You can read about the issues I had here if you’d like. For you master wood turners out there, I would really appreciate you going to that link and coming back here to give me your advice. I’m a complete noob at bowl turning and could use all the help I can get.
For those that don’t care for reading about the problems I had, or just know as little as I do about turning bowls, I will end this post with a couple of photos of the bowl I turned, even through the problems. I know this bowl isn’t much, but I think it’s pretty nice for a newbie bowl turner.