|Project by FJPetruso||posted 10-10-2011 04:05 AM||7296 views||9 times favorited||34 comments|
This is how I made the Board Jack for “The Woodworker’s Mistress”
In the November ‘09 issue of Popular Woodworking there was an article on making a woodworking bench with a board jack. The bench was being made for a woman & they chose to make it in an hour glass shape & called it a “Dead Woman” instead of a dead man. When I was planning my woodworking bench I decided to take this a step further & make the board jack a bit artsy, humorous & very politically incorrect and make it in the shape of a woman’s curvy torso.
I made a sketch &, appropriately, took the sketch to “Kinkos” to have it enlarged. I figured out the percentage that my sketch had to be enlarged to get to the proper size of my board jack & they had an enlargement in a couple of minutes.
The board jack is made of maple & after planing I cut the wood to just over the dimensions of the needed height & width. Next I marked the vertical centerline. And then set my table saw blade at 45 degrees & cut the “V” for the board jack to ride on the triangular shaped track. Next I folded the enlarged sketch down it’s vertical centerline & cut out the outline of the woman’s torso & taped the pattern to the wood & marked the outline with a sharpie. Now I marked the area for the “tongue” of the board jack that rides in a groove in the underside of the 3” maple top & used my radial saw to cut it out.
In the Popular Woodworking article they said that using a divider was “the absolute best way to mark the spacing” for the dog holes on the board jack. But unless you’ve done some extreme calculating of the curves of the board jack as you walk the divider around the curves of the board jack the next point of the dividers will be off of vertical & the vertical spacing of the dog holes will not only be off but they will shorten the vertical spacing of the holes.
The way that I did it was to use a compass to follow the curves of the pattern 1-½ inch from the edge of the pattern. Then, using a carpenter’s square, I marked the horizontal center of the “nipples” & used this as the starting point for marking the rest of the holes. Now I started at this horizontal line & marked the vertical center line every 1-1/8 inches. Using the square, I lightly marked horizontal lines on these marks & alternated sides to make the spacing of the holes on each side 2-¼ inches. Where these horizontal lines intersected the curved lines, that I marked with the compass, is where I marked the point to drill the dog holes. The holes were drilled on my drill press. The one hole is moved to the center some to avoid drilling through a vital curve. But it’s vertical spacing is still right on.
Now I worked on the curves. I cut the torso out on my band saw & sanded the edges. Then I used a ½ inch round over bit to soften the edges of the torso & used my hand carving tools to give the body dimension & shading. I didn’t want to make a “DaVinci”, I wanted a functioning board jack. So it’s basically flat with the shading to give dimension. A beeswax, linseed oil & mineral spirits finish was put on the wood & track & it slides very well.
-- Frank, Florissant, Missouri "The New Show-Me Woodshop"