Toy Grasshoppers made from Sycamore

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Project by ToyMakingDad posted 01-02-2018 09:07 PM 450 views 2 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These are from my Christmas batch of grasshoppers based on the plans in Jim Makowicki’s Making Heirloom Toys.
I don’t put strings or antennae on them but otherwise, they are very close to his plans.

The legs are red oak but the bodies are my first “Log to Toy” effort.

The boards came from a Sycamore log that my local Parks Department very conveniently left on a sidewalk about 15 months ago.

My pictures don’t do it justice but the quarter-sawn sycamore has a spectacular pattern to it.

Finish is beeswax and mineral oil.

Although it was an absolute beast to “split” once I got the log in half and over to a good bandsaw, it cut great and was easy to work with. I certainly can’t complain about the price.
Really looking forward to finding other sources for wood like this and cutting and drying my own boards.

More pictures and details here –

Thanks for looking.

-- Toy Making Dad, Northern Virginia,

8 comments so far

View ralbuck's profile


4137 posts in 2200 days

#1 posted 01-02-2018 09:39 PM

A hopping good job.

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View Mean_Dean's profile


6340 posts in 3081 days

#2 posted 01-02-2018 10:21 PM

Pretty cool grasshopper—I’m sure some lucky kid will have hours of fun with it!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View AJ1104's profile


447 posts in 1593 days

#3 posted 01-02-2018 10:31 PM

Very nice job! I’m sure these made someone happy!

-- AJ, Long Island. New York

View htl's profile


3698 posts in 1093 days

#4 posted 01-03-2018 01:53 AM

Love toys with moving parts they’re so much fun to make.
Nice job!!!

-- Learn More About Making Wooden Models. An Index Of My Model making Blogs.

View whistlingwoodies's profile


41 posts in 955 days

#5 posted 01-03-2018 08:58 PM

The quarter sawn rays look really nice on the side of the body. Great work.

View crowie's profile


2321 posts in 1885 days

#6 posted 01-03-2018 10:50 PM

Hats off to you sir, making a nice neat strong childs toy with moving parts is tops!!

-- Lifes good, Enjoy each new day...... Cheers from "On Top DownUnder" Crowie

View majuvla's profile


11880 posts in 2801 days

#7 posted 01-04-2018 05:27 PM

Got to make a pair of this for my nephews. Great work on those. I maybe like them such uncoloured.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View ToyMakingDad's profile


80 posts in 1945 days

#8 posted 01-04-2018 06:49 PM

Thanks for all the positive feedback from some real craftsmen and great toy makers.

Majuvla – Here is another one that I didn’t paint made from maple:

Sometimes I paint the eyes with acrylic paints and a gloss finish:

-- Toy Making Dad, Northern Virginia,

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