|Project by stefang||posted 12-11-2012 04:00 PM||1915 views||6 times favorited||39 comments|
These baskets are in fact the only woodworking project that I have made more than one of. These are made of Linde wood which is the European version of Basswood. Fantastic for carving with very little grain showing and also pretty light weight, two characteristics which make this a great wood for basket making. Easy to pass around and the scroll sawn pattern shows up well.
I started off with a plank about 3” thick which I cut into about 1/4” thick slabs and then handplaned smooth. The top rim is a flat frame with mitered corners reinforced with small butterfly inlays and with a 15 degree cut on the outside edges.
The sides are cut with compound miters to give them a 15 degree flair and the top and bottom edges are also cut at 15 degrees to make the top and base flat for gluing on the rim and the base frame. The bottom frame is cut to the same angle to mirror the sides while flaring in the opposite direction.
Pretty easy. I glue up the sides first using masking tape to clamp with. The top rim and base are cut to length (with miters) based on measurements from the glued up sides. The frames are glued up separately and the butterfly mortices are thru-cut on the corners of the rim. The frames are then glued to the sides after the glue is dry on the 3 components. I just use rub joints on these then I wrap masking tape around the whole thing just to be on the safe side. No real stress involved here.
The finish is just 3 coats of spray can lacquer (1 hour drying time with light sanding in between coats). I still have two more coats to go on these. They will be sent in the post tomorrow which is the deadline for packages to Sweden.
The design, including the scroll saw pattern, is my own (for better of worse). I’ve made 3 of these so far as Christmas gifts, and they are all used on a regular basis by various family members. These two are headed to our extended ‘new’ family in Sweden.
MITER CUTTING METHODOLOGY
Instead of cutting the compound miter angles with two settings on my miter saw, which is difficult to set accurately, I rip a 12” long piece of pine at 15 degrees on one edge to use as a utility fence with the 90 degree side against my MS fence so I can just place the workpieces against it to produce the 15 degree angle and then just cut a regular 45 degree miter with only one miter saw setting. The utility fence is placed with the narrow edge at the bottom for cutting the sides and the wide edge at the bottom for cutting the base.
I made the first basket of this type about 6 or 7 years ago in response to the woven baskets we normally used disintegrating after a year or two of use. We are still using it on a daily basis as a bread basket for breakfast and lunch. It’s easy to keep toast or buns warm when we use it with a decorative kitchen towel as show in one of the photos above. These would also be great as candy dishes, etc. I have posted the other baskets I made, but these have new patterns and I also wanted to remind everyone what great Christmas gifts these are.
MESSAGE TO MY LJ FRIENDS
I’ve been away from LJ for awhile now laid up with a bad back and knee. I found it frustrating to just read what my buddies and others were doing while I couldn’t actively participate myself.
I will be catching up on all the projects and blogs posted by all my buddies during my absence and commenting on them too. Meanwhile I’m glad to have something to post to get started up again and I’m looking forward to enjoying having a dialog with you once again.
-- Mike, an American living in Norway.