Apartment Projects #15: Details...

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Blog entry by littlecope posted 09-05-2012 12:00 PM 2322 reads 0 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 14: Of Circular Saws... Part 15 of Apartment Projects series Part 16: Quick Kitchen Shelf... »

I got an early start yesterday on a couple of things that needed doing…
Where we live is a largish Apartment building. The mail gets delivered to the front (of course), and that’s where the street numbers are…
In the back, is the parking area and the rear entrances for the various units. Everybody in the building has their unit numbers written there too, except us… I could have left it that way, and let people who visit park and guess which one is ours, but that would be… discourteous…
I also could have run to the hardware store, purchased some numbers, and tacked them up… but where’s the fun in that?
I decided to make some numbers… Happily, I didn’t have to re-invent the numerals, a few days ago I simply made a tracing of the numbers in the front…Tracing of Street #'s...

There was a time when I cut letters and numbers out of plied wood, but I soon discovered that they do not fare well when exposed to the elements… I don’t think there is a glue made that can stand up to the weather, as signs that were put outside had the wood plies peel like an onion…
So I secured a small scrap of Oak… It was too thick for number or letter work so I had to re-saw it…Re-sawing...

As an aside, I just put new jaws on that old vise last week, so it was my first time using it… The old ones were in a pitiable state, with loose, stripped screws that left dandy dents from the screw heads in any clamped work…Old Vise Jaws...

But anyway, once sawn, the now-thinner stock was ready to have the tracings transferred to them. The plan, is to tack these up with some Brass Brads, so at this point I pre-drilled for the brads and added the usual access holes for the Scroll Saw work…
Scroll Saws make very short work of this sort of thing…After Pattern transfer and ready for cutting...Cutting...

I still had a half can of Spray Lacquer left over and it was used on these, starting with the underside first…Finishing backs first...

While I waited for that to dry, I turned my attention to a Spice Rack that I made, circa 1999-2000… It hung on the wall in Manchester until last October, and looked it!New life for an old spice rack...

It’s not a fancy thing, I made it to be useful, not pretty…
And so it has been, and after taking it apart, and giving it a good cleaning and sanding, it will be useful still…Spice rack...

Anyway, all of that didn’t take very long, a little over two hours…
We had made plans to go to the beach yesterday, and with the scattered rain that was falling we almost changed our minds…
Debbie and I finally just up and went, and I’m glad we did! Even in the rain, there is still a restorative and calming effect when visiting the Ocean… Nice to know the lighthouse is still there too…Nubble Lighthouse

When we got home, just before dinner, I tacked up the new house numbers…
It’s funny sometimes, how satisfying these little “detail” projects can be… They’ll be there to greet us every time we come home…
And I’m not likely to forget the day that I put them on…
Yesterday, was my Birthday… :)New Street numbers...
5 September 2012

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

24 comments so far

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 2856 days

#1 posted 09-05-2012 12:14 PM

Belated Birthday wishes Mike

Nice view, all the wee bits make it a home

The spice rack was done right first time makes

it easier to clean up.


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View ~Julie~'s profile


607 posts in 3034 days

#2 posted 09-05-2012 12:26 PM

Happy Birthday, Mike!
Let us know how the numbers hold up. I made some this summer out of plywood with a good primer and three coats of exterior house paint. It’s hard to get wood to last outside, so I’m hoping mine last because they were purchased by a customer of mine.

-- ~Julie~

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

20488 posts in 3105 days

#3 posted 09-05-2012 12:41 PM

Happy birthday, Mike!!!!!
Nice job on the numbers!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Porchfish's profile


823 posts in 2532 days

#4 posted 09-05-2012 12:41 PM

Nicely done Mike . It’s the smallest things adding up that make a house a home ! Oh and Happy Birthday my friend !

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View Roger's profile


20928 posts in 2803 days

#5 posted 09-05-2012 12:47 PM

Happy Birthday. I’d like to be 27 again….

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Nate Meadows's profile

Nate Meadows

1132 posts in 2206 days

#6 posted 09-05-2012 01:12 PM

Nice Work! How rewarding is that, to make something you see everyday! Happy B day too, 30 is not that far away, enjoy in my friend :).


-- "With a little bit of faith, and some imagination, you can build anything!" Nate

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2919 days

#7 posted 09-05-2012 01:15 PM

Wonderful blog, Mike! You are right that the small things can make a big difference in making a house your “home.” The numbers came out great!

Happy birthday to you too! Glad to see you spend some time doing what you like. The ocean is a wonderful place to reflect and relax. I am happy to read you had such a good day!

I wish you a happy and healthy year ahead!

Sheila :)

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Jason's profile


659 posts in 3508 days

#8 posted 09-05-2012 01:56 PM

Yesterday was my birthday too! I hope you had a great day!

-- Jason - Colorado Springs

View patron's profile


13604 posts in 3341 days

#9 posted 09-05-2012 02:27 PM

good to know the lighthouse
was still there indeed

like a thoughtful friend
in need

great works michael

and new jaws
on old vices

make for a happy home

enjoy b’boy

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1798 posts in 3190 days

#10 posted 09-05-2012 03:00 PM

Numbers looked good, Happy Birthday!!!!

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View Kookaburra's profile


748 posts in 2224 days

#11 posted 09-05-2012 03:07 PM

What a wonderful birthday – and now you have a reminder you will see everyo=time you walk into the house.

-- Kay - Just a girl who loves wood.

View lew's profile


12061 posts in 3755 days

#12 posted 09-05-2012 03:38 PM

Love that kitchen storage unit- neat idea with the dowel!!

What a beautiful pix of the ocean. You are right about the calming effect regardless of the weather.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View degoose's profile


7233 posts in 3354 days

#13 posted 09-05-2012 07:49 PM

Looks like you are still having fun… and hope you had a fun birthday…cheers

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3115 days

#14 posted 09-05-2012 09:21 PM

right on Mike evrery thing on its own place calm us down …. LOL
even when the wether is a little knarworn and the waters show its teeth
it is great to clear the mind of frustrations :-)

its the small things that makes a home welcoming you
nomatter how long the honey to do list is …. :-)

ceep fidling with them

View littlecope's profile


3071 posts in 3501 days

#15 posted 09-05-2012 10:54 PM

Thanks Everybody, I had a Fine Birthday…
Jamie: I used to do a lot of through-mortise and tenon…Bird House made in 2000...
The Spice Rack was a pretty early effort… I remembered making it, as I took it apart… I had tried to mark both sides at one time, thinking that that would be fool-proof… But, I think I had one of the sides flipped the wrong way, with the result that it looks slightly like one of those marble-run tracks when it’s examined head-on…
Julie: When I used to cut them out of plywood, most of the time I was using found-wood (particularly drawer bottoms). The wood was very dry and I don’t think that helped…
Using a good plywood and applying several coats of anything should buy you some time… and if the owner gave it some TLC once in a while (like a new coat of paint!) that would help… but, given time, I’m afraid the elements are going to win…
Using a thin hardwood like this, it’s certainly not going to peel, but I could get splitting later on… I’ll be keeping an eye on it…
Jim: Did you know, that 7’s are hard to hang? If you stand them up too much, they look like 1’s…
Not enough, and they look really wrong… And it’s tricky to hold onto the seven, and stand back twenty feet and take a good look… :)
Don: Just making a little mark in the World my Friend…
Roger: So would I Brother, so would I… but only if I can keep what I know now!
Nate: I’m sorry if I mislead, the Street number isn’t my age, I doubled that yesterday! I was born in 1958…
Sheila: The Ocean never fails to restore my “inner balance”... I need to go there, at least a few times a year.
The Sea, speaking with it’s voice of eternity, puts my problems or concerns in their proper perspective… And the salt air isn’t bad either! :)
Jason: Well fancy that! Happy Birthday, and I hope it was a Good One for You! I don’t know about you, but more often than not, mine would always fall on the first day of school… I used to hate that! A lousy way to celebrate it, summer’s end, and back to school… :)
David: The Light at Cape Neddick in York, Maine is one of the most photographed places in the world. Until recently, it had always been manned… I always wondered what life was like for the keeper and his family, completely isolated on their own island, but separated from land by only about 100”!! Like living in a fish bowl, I guess…
People used to ooh and aah, and get their cameras ready, when the keeper let his dogs out to do their business! LOL
Bob K.: Thanks Mr. Kollman! Total cutting time was about three minutes… unless you count the re-sawing… that would bring it up to a little over ten minutes… A real easy one, but it’s nice (occasionally) to do a project that doesn’t take a year and a day!
Kay: Thank You! I see you’re relatively new to the site… Welcome to Lumberjocks!! I hope you’re enjoying it my Friend!!
Lew: Originally, it had a loop of rope (clothesline actually) that went through all the holes and around the whole thing… Since it isn’t a wall-hung anymore, but rather a counter-top, I needed a simple way to hold it together. A couple dowels fit the bill… simply… :)
Larry: Thank You Mr. Degoose! How’s the Lase-learning coming? Soon you’ll have to change your title to “Laser Larry”!! LOL
Dennis: The Honey-do list really isn’t very long, my Friend… and it’s mostly stuff that we both want accomplished…
Next on my list is getting the car registered and inspected… The last time I brought it in for an oil change, my mechanic hinted that there wasn’t going to be anything needed to be done for inspection. So he asked me to think about whether I’d like the headlights re-ground… Did you ever hear of that? He described it as a kit, comprised of finer and finer sandpapers, and some kind of rubbing compound that makes the lenses look like new… It’s not a safety issue, yet, but more light is always better, right?
Again, sincerely, Thank You my Friends…

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

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