Nephews in the Workshop: Trucks and an Airplane!

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Project by Dan Lyke posted 05-07-2011 07:00 PM 2262 views 3 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The nephews (3 and 5) came to visit last week. When they arrived, after a loooooong car drive, the first question was “do you have any toys?”. Of course the answer was “yes”, but they’re mostly big boy toys. However, big boy toys are useful for making little boy toys.

The 5 year old handled the drill press, the hand drill and the milling machine (with a bunch of supervision), we had to give the 3 year old a little help with the screwdriver, and both were pretty good with the pull saw, but by the time they left we had toys.

I was also extremely happy to discover that Michael’s, the craft store, carries wooden wheels, ‘cause the hole saw was getting a serious smoke inducing workout cutting wheels.

And ever so hard was all of those nice hard wood scraps and hearing “Mommy can paint these, she’s good at that”. She is indeed an excellent artist, but…

And, of course, without a finish, half of the parts were covered in yoghurt and washed off before the visit complete

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

11 comments so far

View Bluepine38's profile


3379 posts in 3078 days

#1 posted 05-07-2011 07:32 PM

Sounds like a good way to start young lumberjocks, a we will make toys, instead of a toys’r us, have not
heard of that washed yogurt finish, must be for the younger generation only, LOL. Thank you for sharing,
but you should have pictures of your accomplices, I mean apprentices.

-- As ever, Gus-the 79 yr young apprentice carpenter

View bhack's profile


349 posts in 3713 days

#2 posted 05-07-2011 07:39 PM

You are a great Uncle. Keep it up.

-- Bill - If I knew GRANDKIDS were so much fun I would have had them first.

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3108 days

#3 posted 05-07-2011 08:17 PM

way to go uncle Dan :—))
great work Will and Ethan they are great trucks and airplane
ceep coming back and desturb Uncle Dan ..... he loves to have you around :-)

thank´s for sharing the moment with us Dan … there A chance for a picture of working children :-)

take care

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4118 days

#4 posted 05-07-2011 08:42 PM

My Dad and Will at the Drill Press, the boys playing with the trucks, and Ethan with a hammer:

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3108 days

#5 posted 05-07-2011 08:49 PM

thank´s Dan :-)

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 2829 days

#6 posted 05-08-2011 02:04 AM

That is so cool. I want to include my son in projects, but he gets bored really easy or insists on doing what he is not ready to do. Any suggestions?

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4118 days

#7 posted 05-08-2011 04:14 AM

Maybe set up some kits? I did a lot of on-the-fly improv, but a few places I said “why don’t you go see what your mom is doing in the kitchen for a few minutes?”

Last night at a program my wife runs for low-income families, I helped a girl with cerebral palsy do a dump truck, and we totally set it up for the things she knew how to do. She loves to saw, so I set up a few jigs to keep her cuts straight (kinda like a miter box), and I made sure we had appropriately dimensioned lumber lying around, but let her do the cuts, did the joints with (glued, I did this quickly when she was getting the hammer) nails, and next time she’ll put the wheels on it.

The truck bodies here came out of the scrap box, so that was pre-cut, other than that it’s a few planks screwed together. Start with a few of those, let him pull the lever on the drill press, pretty soon I’ll bet he’ll be saying “that flatbed should really be a dump truck. How do we do that?”

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 2829 days

#8 posted 05-11-2011 12:53 AM

Thanks Dan, that is helpful and gives me some food for thought.


-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View helluvawreck's profile


31019 posts in 2860 days

#9 posted 05-11-2011 08:14 PM

One of the nicest things about having a shop is all of the things that come out of it that go to those you love. Sounds like you had a lot of fun.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2669 days

#10 posted 05-11-2011 08:38 PM

Spunwood, I gave my grandson a birdhouse in kit form. I cut it out and predrilled all the holes where the nails would go. Nails are hard to drive in plywood. I gave him a new hammer also. He got right on the project and with my help he had a birdhouse in about 30 minutes. Then he was off to get Grandma to help him paint it. He enjoyed it. Don’t make anything that takes more than 20 or 30 minutes and if he gets tired stop and take a break. Their attention span is short and they need a rest. You and I didn’t start out with an 8 hour work day. I had already done the stuff that I knew he couldn’t or shouldn’t do. Always end on a good note. Don’t get angry and tell them they need to go take a break. Sense it and tell them you are tired and need a drink before finishing. something like that.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18265 posts in 3669 days

#11 posted 05-22-2011 08:47 PM

Good work with the kids! When the wheels aren’t available, it is a good time to make all terrain tracked vehicles ;-)

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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