First the bad news, just after my Bro-in law rec’d his homemade 6-in-1 mahogany screwdriver for christmas (and my nephew asked if he was really going to use it) it broke. Apparently the fact that I made it was a miracle, as I misjudged and left the wall closest to the business end very thin. First attempt was only a success in working out all the details in getting it on the lathe, and then off in one piece. Another second and It would have exploded on me.
Like any good customer service dept, I had him send it back to see what I could to to repair it, and after staring at it everyday for a month a solution presented itself. All I needed to do was take a tip from penturning, and put a tube down the center to epoxy both halves back on to, and create a patch piece (wood, ray-crete or ???) to go between. In the end, I decided on turning a new handle to match up to the “business end”. I was hoping to salvage the metal components, and reusing that portion seemed to be the only way.
Am I just a cheap lumberjock, or a frugal yankee that I’ll spend more money and time in repairing this, than just dropping another $4 on a new screwdriver to start over? Or perhaps I just won’t let this beat me, and starting over with new parts is to admit defeat?
Last night I redrilled out the center hole to 5/8ths to fit the copper piping and epoxied that in place. Fitting on the bottom of the original handle proved trickier. the fit went from tight and off center to loose very quickly. While checking the fit the original handle cracked. (and I was able to get the copper pipe off. A few strokes of the chisel freed up the nut, and now a repair job has turned into a do-over. The good news, I can take the lessons I learned and put that into a new tool, and while the repaired piece would have come out good, some of the logistics, or rather the (cross your fingers and hope the glue holds factor) can be avoided.
What did I learn. Use a straight grained (or rived) piece of wood. (there was some twist down at the bottom at the second fracture point). Rather than drill out the center channel to accept the shaft of the screwdriver to match the size of the hole in the ubiquitous orange handled one, counterbore smaller sized holes, only as big as neccessary. and mostly, do not reduce the width of the handle beyond that of the base. Even if the design tries to convince me to do so.
I first planned this project before kits (with instructions) came onto the market. But now, why haven’t I just gone out and bought a kit (and spent an extra buck or so). I’m a lumberjock, who may just be a glutton for punishment. But in the meantime, I dug out a small piece of maple to make the next one, plus earmarked a couple other hardwoods to make Rob’s replacement.
Sorry brother, but you’re not going to get a piece out of your parents mahogany offcuts – I want Clay to pass the next one down to your grandkids…. But rest assured, the handle will have come from their property, so it’ll still be an heirloom peice for several reasons.