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Shop Notes

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Blog series by Steve updated 01-19-2018 05:01 PM 5 parts 1326 reads 4 comments total

Part 1: Organizing for the New Year

01-03-2018 04:39 PM by Steve | 0 comments »

I like to start off a new year by getting my shop in shape. After the busy holiday season, offcuts are piled everywhere, edges are dull and the deficiencies in the workspace are sharp in my mind. Shortly after Christmas, I set to work making a new stand for my lathe. The old one was designed to stand in the middle of the room and had storage on both sides. I ended up pushing it against a wall, which made that space either worthless or terribly inconvenient. The new stand—not a thing ...

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Part 2: Beetle Kill Pine

01-06-2018 06:25 PM by Steve | 1 comment »

I finished up my year-end inventory yesterday after counting almost 180 different sticks of wood, from full-sized logs to tiny sticks of exotic scraps I can’t bear to burn. Counting meant cleaning and organizing, so I took advantage of the suddenly clutter-free benchtop and built up some cabinet doors for my new lathe stand. Out here in the Western U.S. there’s been an ongoing infestation of bark beetles in our softwood forests. I’ve seen areas where the dead trees we...

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Part 3: Cabinet Drawers for Me (And Some Lathe Fun)

01-11-2018 05:22 PM by Steve | 0 comments »

My kitchen doesn’t have a dedicated pantry, so we use biggest cupboard we have for food storage: a large, deep cave above the oven. Not surprisingly, things stack up and easily get lost in the depths. I’ve been wanting some kind of slide out storage system for that space, and this month I finally had the opportunity. I designed a couple of tall, deep units and ordered some soft-close under-mount sliders that can take the expected weight. A single sheet of medium quality 3/4R...

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Part 4: Planer Fun

01-17-2018 04:48 PM by Steve | 0 comments »

I dug into my planer yesterday as part of my January shop rehab. Over the course of the year, I occasionally scrub off the pitch buildup on the rollers, inspect the knives and lube up the moving parts. Annually, though, I dig out the manual and check off the bigger items, like cleaning the drive chains and inspecting the v-belts. On pulling the gear cover, I discovered that a bolt holding one of the drives had come completely out. The gear didn’t come off the shaft, thank goodnes...

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Part 5: Sharpening

01-19-2018 05:01 PM by Steve | 3 comments »

Sharpening day yesterday. I don’t do this often enough, especially with my planes. Not sure why I procrastinate; it’s not an unpleasant job and the results are worth the effort. The chisels on the bench are new—a gift last year. Some sharpened up right away, others took some scrubbing. Today I’ll be cleaning and inspecting my table saw blades. I did take some time to do some actual work, though, tightening up some antique chairs. I don’t do furnitur...

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