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Thread: Adventures in DIY

  1. #1051
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    I finished the small trinket chest. I'll give myself a B- grade. Shellac finish is imperfect; the top and bottom pieces weren't precisely flat so the joins between them and the sides show small gaps. Still, given this thing used to be a walnut tree growing in my neighborhood, it's not bad. I wonder how long it will hold together given everything's joined with glue?

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  2. #1052
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    Several orders of magnitude better than anything I can do!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  3. #1053
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Several orders of magnitude better than anything I can do!
    Oh, I'd wager that with the right assortment of power tools, you could do just as well or better.

  4. #1054
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    Looks great to me.

    In a couple of months, I'm going to move into a house with more garage space, enough that I'm starting to think about what sort of "shop hobby" I might engage in. Woodworking, building furniture, antique restoration, small engine repair...

  5. #1055
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesabrown View Post
    Looks great to me.

    In a couple of months, I'm going to move into a house with more garage space, enough that I'm starting to think about what sort of "shop hobby" I might engage in. Woodworking, building furniture, antique restoration, small engine repair...
    ...siege engines....
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  6. #1056
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    [Google] Did you mean: seized engines [/Google]

    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  7. #1057
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    [Google] Did you mean: seized engines [/Google]

    I know. It's hard to tell, with a name like "Trebuchet" it could go either way.
    Solfe

  8. #1058
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    Still, given this thing used to be a walnut tree growing in my neighborhood, it's not bad. I wonder how long it will hold together given everything's joined with glue?
    It’s a right nice looking little chest. I may have missed mention of it but how thick was the stock and how long did the it dry?

    I got some more prep work done for the couch table build.

    I made a pattern for the tabletop from a scrap of 1/2” plywood and made a laminating form from two pieces of glued-up 3/4” ply based on the pattern. I made a clamping caul from another blank of glued-up ply by tracing the front portion of the form and rough cutting it at the band saw. I stacked the form on top of the pattern piece so I could use it as a router guide and double taped everything onto a base. I then used a 3/8” top bearing pattern bit to partially rout the caul profile.







    Next, I trimmed the rest of the caul profile with a bottom bearing flush trim bit at the router table, eased the ends of the profile with a file, and lined it with PSA cork sheet.





    I then drilled some holes in the form to accept clamps, and cut notches in the caul to allow clamping the curves at 45 degrees.



    I’ll mount the form on a base to keep everything in-plane during glue up. Next up: cutting strips for the lamination.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  9. #1059
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    It’s a right nice looking little chest. I may have missed mention of it but how thick was the stock and how long did the it dry?
    Thanks. The stock was highly varied in thickness given they were the product of chainsaw action and were only scraps from that effort (the big, regular pieces were sold off by the landowner). I used pieces that ran between a half inch and two inches. My resaw blade and planer got a workout. The wood has dried for over five years. It was transported from Atlanta here to Oregon, awaiting a project.

  10. #1060
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    Today I went up the roof of the workshop with some liquid rubber to try and fix a leak. I hate flat roofs with a passion, and this leak confirms once again why. And this roof gives me a big extra to hate: it is on the plot limit on 2 sides and it has two non-90° angles, which means that both structurally and legally it is next to impossible to put a nice looking inclined roof on it.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  11. #1061
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    Is it feasible to get a variance?

    I ran into a disappointing obstacle today. I went out to change the oil and filter on the house generator and discovered it was in a fault mode: RPM Sense Loss. Nope. Won’t start. The status history also indicated a low battery charge prior to that so I pulled it out and put it on a charger. It doesn’t look low on the charger but I’ll let it sit and try later. If it doesn’t work, I’ll take it in to a shop for a battery test. If it isn’t the battery, I dunno. I have a feeling this could be expensive.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  12. #1062
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Is it feasible to get a variance?
    That part would be the least of the problems; technically inclined roofs on sheds/garages are not allowed in this neighbourhood but literally all the neighbours have one (it's Belgium, we tend to do as we please). My problem is with a more basic law: the water from a roof is not allowed to fall on someone else's property, nor are you allowed to hang your gutter over their property. So if you have a building literally on the property edge on 2 sides, you have a problem with an inclined roof. Sure, on-the-wall gutters exist, but those are just tiny flat roofs in disguise, with all the potential big problems.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  13. #1063
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    Light day in the shop. I made a change to my plan for the sofa table due to concern about wood movement. It's only 11¼ inches wide so it's not going to expand/contract a large amount but it's going to be constrained by the wrap-around lip. If something doesn't pop or crack, I think the top could cup. Nope. I decided to make the top from plywood and skin it with shop-made veneer. The trouble is have no 18 mm Baltic birch plywood from which to make it and...pandemic. But I do have 6 and 12 mm ply on hand, so I cut a piece of each, slathered on the glue, and weighed them down mightily. They'll sit there for 24 hours.

    Next, I tackled some shop chores and upgrades. I cranked up the air compressor and blew dust out of the router table and the table saw cabinet. To better organize my saw, I ordered a couple of 3D printed drawers a while back that replace the fence rail end plugs. I like 'em a lot.
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    I really like my JessEm router lift but I've become much less enthusiastic about their insert system since I have to use a spanner to change them. Jessem manufactures a rebranded version of my lift for Incra, that's modified with their MagnaLOCK insert system. I was happy to learn that they sell a conversion kit, consisting of a new plate and a set of inserts, and I recently received mine. Changing the plate took about 30 minutes but only because there were no installation instructions included and I therefore took my time to remove the old plate. It should have taken 15 or twenty minutes, really. The inserts are steel and are held in place with rare earth magnets. The insert simply drops in place with a satisfying snap. A tool isn't required to change most inserts, as long as you can get a finger in its hole and lift. When you can't just left it out, there a small notch in the edge of the insert at about 8 o'clock that allows you to lift with a fine screwdriver, an awl, etc. I feel like I have a completely new lift.
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    Last edited by PetersCreek; 2020-Mar-31 at 07:10 PM. Reason: "doesn't"
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  14. #1064
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    I really like that idea of drawers to replace the fence end caps. I have a different fence for my SawStop so it doesn't translate, though.

    Getting wood for planned projects is among the dozens of other things I probably should have thought of while the pandemic was just ramping up. For instance, I was planning on gutting and redoing the bay window cabinetry in the house. The previous owner did a poor job with the craftsmanship but most egregious is an apparent complete lack of insulation behind the cabinet. When I open one of the drawers during cold weather, the contents of the drawer seem to be at outside ambient temperature.

  15. #1065
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    I really like that idea of drawers to replace the fence end caps. I have a different fence for my SawStop so it doesn't translate, though.
    Did you get a new fence? The pics you posted after getting your saw show that we have the same fence/rail.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  16. #1066
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Did you get a new fence? The pics you posted after getting your saw show that we have the same fence/rail.
    No, same fence. It has an end cap on the back but not the front. The sides of the fence form a convenient trough for pencils and such.

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  17. #1067
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    No, same fence. It has an end cap on the back but not the front. The sides of the fence form a convenient trough for pencils and such.
    Ah...then the drawers do translate, although my explanation didn't. They don't fit in the fence itself. They slide into the ends of the fence rail, on which the fence rides. The Etsy listing through which I purchased them has more pictures.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  18. #1068
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    Well, dang. Yesterday's glue-up failed. In spite of it being heavily weighted, a portion separated and the piece warped a bit. So, I toddled off to the home center this morning and bought a quarter sheet of MDF, while maintaining social distance. It wasn't that hard really. There were only about 6-8 cars in the parking lot. After breaking it down, I moved on to the real wood. I milled it flat and square, and re-sawed it down the middle to reveal the bookmatch.

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    As you can see, the board has some crotch figure in it. It looked kind of rough on the outside, so I left the piece long in case I needed to use the clear portion...but I was hoping for something interesting inside. That's pretty interesting, I think and the wife likes it. After it comes out of the clamps, I'll fill the voids with colored epoxy or CA.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  19. #1069
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Ah...then the drawers do translate, although my explanation didn't. They don't fit in the fence itself. They slide into the ends of the fence rail, on which the fence rides. The Etsy listing through which I purchased them has more pictures.
    Oy, I didn't look at your photos closely enough. Obviously, they're of the rail. It's not like I don't have time to properly read and look these days.

  20. #1070
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    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    Oy, I didn't look at your photos closely enough. Obviously, they're of the rail. It's not like I don't have time to properly read and look these days.
    I'm right there with ya. Even though I may take the time to read and look, I'm increasingly prone to not doing so these days...or promptly forgetting the result.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  21. #1071
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    I am in the midst of patching some cracks in my 71-year-old living room plaster ceiling. The material is unusual, at least in my experience. It is not lath and plaster, but is 3/8" of plaster on a plasterboard substrate. That plaster layer is about 1/4" of rough material and finished with about 1/8" of white plaster. If I remember correctly my dad said the rough stuff on the ceiling is mixed with vermiculite to reduce the weight. I don't know whether this was commonplace in the late 1940s, but it was my parents' choice for this custom-built house, which they built themselves. The substrate pieces are 18" wide and probably 4' long, nailed crossways to the joists. The room is about 21' wide, with the joists being part of the roof truss. The cracks are straight lines under where the edges of the substrate pieces come together. The worst one is down the center line and has been recurring for as long as I can remember, and has been patched twice at about 25-year intervals. The others have cropped up more recently and are just hairlines. This could be from long term settling and drying out of the wood framing, or there could be some seasonal expansion and contraction. When I finish the patching I will apply a coat of primer to the patches but otherwise wait a long time before painting, to see how well it holds up. I am in no hurry to sell the place and I can live with a less-than-perfect ceiling for a while.

    To spice up the home front, a fluorescent ceiling light suddenly failed totally. My test meter shows the juice reaching the connections, so my guess is that the ballast failed. It has four bulbs and I would not expect them to go totally dark all at once. They usually start flickering and get dim first. I ordered a new ballast from Home Depot, to be picked up at the store tomorrow whenever they can get it ready for pickup. As I understand our Governor's emergency stay-at-home order, trips to a hardware or building supply store are exempt.

    I have plenty of long-neglected cleanup and upkeep work on this place to keep me busy during this crisis.

  22. #1072
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    Interesting. 70 years ago would be about when drywall (aka sheetrock, plasterboard, gypsumboard, etc) would have first been becoming accepted. It's not surprising they would have still been covering it with a fairly thick layer of plaster, modern methods not yet quite having come into use. My parents had their first real home built in 1952, I remember them saying they were considered pioneers for using sheetrock instead of lathe and plaster at the time.

    I'd expect the cracks to be from long-term settling, which is pretty inevitable.

    I also have plenty of things to do during the crisis. But I don't seem to be doing them. Oh, well.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  23. #1073
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Well, dang. Yesterday's glue-up failed. In spite of it being heavily weighted, a portion separated and the piece warped a bit. So, I toddled off to the home center this morning and bought a quarter sheet of MDF, while maintaining social distance.
    It is very important to maintain social distance from MDF. People, too.
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  24. #1074
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Interesting. 70 years ago would be about when drywall (aka sheetrock, plasterboard, gypsumboard, etc) would have first been becoming accepted. It's not surprising they would have still been covering it with a fairly thick layer of plaster, modern methods not yet quite having come into use. My parents had their first real home built in 1952, I remember them saying they were considered pioneers for using sheetrock instead of lathe and plaster at the time.

    I'd expect the cracks to be from long-term settling, which is pretty inevitable.

    I also have plenty of things to do during the crisis. But I don't seem to be doing them. Oh, well.
    My bold. That sounds like me the past four years. I didn't know just how hard on me it was being my mother's caregiver during the previous four years until it was over. That's when the lethargy and inertia set in, and for a long time I neglected what I rationalized as being nonessential chores. I have made a point of keeping the house and half-acre yard looking nice from the street, but inside it is a shambles. Now I am finally making some steady progress in tidying up, and it is not physically too much for me as long as I am reasonably healthy despite my age and diabetes. I am physically alone here, but with this forum along with the church, the model railroad club and the astronomy club connected online I don't feel lonely.

  25. #1075
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    Just a little evening shop time to fill voids with used coffee grounds and CA adhesive.

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  26. #1076
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Just a little evening shop time to fill voids with used coffee grounds and CA adhesive.

    Nice, is CA a poly vinyl acetate adhesive, or PVA? Good trick to use coffee grounds.
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  27. #1077
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    Ah. CA here is cyanoacrylate? I didn’t think you were filling the gap with California.

    I’ve seen it used in some kinds of model fill. Always annoying getting it on the fingers though.

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  28. #1078
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    Ah. CA here is cyanoacrylate? I didn’t think you were filling the gap with California.

    I’ve seen it used in some kinds of model fill. Always annoying getting it on the fingers though.
    Oh yes we use various grades of “super glue” as it is known. CA could have been contact adhesive, though! PVA is a useful wood glue also used in cement mixes and as a sealer. Trouble is the brand names get so well known but often stay in country.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
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  29. #1079
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Just a little evening shop time to fill voids with used coffee grounds and CA adhesive.
    Coffee grounds? Is that simply to fill up the cracks thus reducing the volume of adhesive required, or is there some other reason? And why not epoxy?

  30. #1080
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    Oh yes we use various grades of “super glue” as it is known. CA could have been contact adhesive, though! PVA is a useful wood glue also used in cement mixes and as a sealer. Trouble is the brand names get so well known but often stay in country.
    Sorry! "CA" is the shorthand commonly used in the woodworking forums I frequent. Curiously, we don't shorten contact adhesive, aka contact cement, except perhaps to use the brand name of whatever we're using, such as Weldwood. For PVA glues, the most widely used here is the Titebond brand with several formulations available. The one I use most is commonly abbreviated in the forums as TBIII, for Titebond III.

    Quote Originally Posted by geonuc View Post
    Coffee grounds? Is that simply to fill up the cracks thus reducing the volume of adhesive required, or is there some other reason? And why not epoxy?
    Yep, it's primarily a filler and a colorant. I considered epoxy but these weren't clean cracks. They had a lot of separated fibers bridging the gaps and I had concern that the expoxy wouldn't penetrate thoroughly. While it isn't practical for large voids, the CA/filler method is much quicker for small gaps. Just pack the grounds in, flood it with CA, spray it with activator, and I'm scraping it smooth in a matter of seconds. Even though it takes two or more applications, it's still faster than my expoxy's 2-hour cure time. On the completely subjective side, I think the coffee grounds look more organic than most epoxy fills. The color is certainly very wood-like. I've even been toying with the idea of using alternatives like ground coconut or cocao shells.
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