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Thread: Adventures in DIY

  1. #1291
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    And do you screw correctly with the three drilling actions that preceed it? Predrill inner shaft diameter through both parts, predrill upper shaft diameter through outer part, countersink/deburr top? Just to gauge your standards. I tend to be a bit "ain't nobody got time for that" on this front, however I plan on doing it when making the railroad benchwork because I don't want another wobbly skewed contraption.

    Today I have managed to use a jigsaw as straight as one can expect. 40mm thick pine and no significant correction work needed afterwards. To achieve this, I first made sure that the blade was absolutely perpendicular to the machine's foot, and that made all the difference. It would be even better if I had a blade that cut better through this wood, but at least it's a thick blade that doesn't bend too easily.

    As with all things, practice helps a lot. When I had to remove, shorten and reinstall 48 roof beams, I got quite good at driving huge nails towards the end of the job...
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  2. #1292
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    And do you screw correctly with the three drilling actions that preceed it? Predrill inner shaft diameter through both parts, predrill upper shaft diameter through outer part, countersink/deburr top? Just to gauge your standards.
    I MIGHT drill a pilot hole, guessing at the diameter, through the first part, and as far into the second as the drill bit extends. If I then have to move the first part for some reason, I might even run a screw into it just far enough so it sticks out a couple of mm and then use that to find the shallow hole in the second part.
    And then I lean like heck on the drill so the bit doesn't cam out and run it in. Deck screws pretty much will go in flush without pre-countersinking.
    If other than soft wood, things are different, of course!
    I seem to have some Robertson screws on hand, may just go ahead and use them tomorrow.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  3. #1293
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    Looking at your woodwork and mine, I'm joining ranks with Trebuchet. I'm a carpenter. At best.
    Thank you...and I'd be happy to be considered a good carpenter. I do okay and get by but I'm sure not ready for the trades.

    Starting my workday at the home office at 6AM let my have some afternoon time in the shop. I smoothed the tray's box joints, cut it to height, and fitted it to the box.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Next up: mill and fit the finger lift in the lid, then mortise and set the hinges. After than, it's down to the finish.
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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)

  4. #1294
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    Beautifully precise!

    Today my DIY adventure featured the soldering iron and Dremel. I modified my old 8 but Sega to make it work on modern TV's, run at the correct Japanese speed instead of the souped-down European speed (due to 50Hz vs 60Hz back in the day) and give it better image quality than ever thanks to picking the RGB signals straight from the graphics chip.

    It works!
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  5. #1295
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    I managed to cut all the wood nicely to length. Then I had an event with the sander and now it's 5mm short. Sigh. I'm thinking what's best to solve this issue. I can add a 5mm strip of wood, but that will not make the end result any prettier. I can solve the visual issues by adding a top plate to the base, but I can't make that one nice either.

    Well, trying to cut nicely rectangular aluminium plate is my last resort plan in case I can't get the wood to look nice. As far as I understand, wood cutting tools can do aluminium too so I could try the table saw with the smallest pitch blade in my collection. The aluminium I have is heavily scratched though, so I'm not sure that would be the way to go even if I would attack it with a wire wheel.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  6. #1296
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    I managed to cut all the wood nicely to length. Then I had an event with the sander and now it's 5mm short.
    Can you give me a rough sketch of what you’re doing? I have an idea but I want to be clear about the desired 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)

  7. #1297
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    Top view attached.

    I've first made the most ambitious attempt to solve it (drawn in the top view on the bottom right): added 5mm pieces of wood to the parts that are too short, taking care to match the grain. If (being optimistic here...) that would not look satisfactory, there's two other options:

    -cut the entire slab in half down the middle and add a piece of contrasting wood there, call it a design feature.
    -use the wood slab as filler and cover the top with aluminium plates. This industrial look wouldn't be out of place actually, if I can make nice aluminium plates.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  8. #1298
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    Ah, when you wrote “slab” I envisioned a monolithic piece of wood. It looks like you’ve got a glued-up panel set within a box frame, correct? Grain matching a patch would be an extremely tough nut to crack. Is that 5mm critical to the overall dimensions that you need? If so, I can suggest a remedy.

    I would consider glueing a narrow (5mm!) frame within the the outer frame in a contrasting species/color to create a border. You could then adjust the location of your cutouts or if that’s not possible, just cut them as planned.

    Now, I have to ask what is the top-to-bottom dimension? Wood tends to expand/contract across the grain and the wider it is, the greater that change will be. In the long grain direction, however, there will be little-to-no change in length. With nowhere to go, you’re panel and frame can wind up fighting each other and the stresses can result in a failure of the panel, the frame, or both.
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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. #1299
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    In the vein of ‘things that make you happy’, I made a short video of how the tray fits into the box:



    A very satisfying “piston fit.”
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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)

  10. #1300
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    ^ That is so cool!

  11. #1301
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    Ah, when you wrote “slab” I envisioned a monolithic piece of wood. It looks like you’ve got a glued-up panel set within a box frame, correct? Grain matching a patch would be an extremely tough nut to crack. Is that 5mm critical to the overall dimensions that you need? If so, I can suggest a remedy.

    I would consider glueing a narrow (5mm!) frame within the the outer frame in a contrasting species/color to create a border. You could then adjust the location of your cutouts or if that’s not possible, just cut them as planned.

    Now, I have to ask what is the top-to-bottom dimension? Wood tends to expand/contract across the grain and the wider it is, the greater that change will be. In the long grain direction, however, there will be little-to-no change in length. With nowhere to go, you’re panel and frame can wind up fighting each other and the stresses can result in a failure of the panel, the frame, or both.
    It is 400mm by 600mm. I call it a slab because I like to pretend it is the monolithic piece of wood which I didn't have.

    The location and dimensions of the cutouts are critical.

    I've been wondering about the expansion of the wood myself. The living room is quite constant in temperature but not in humidity... If this turns into a perfect failure, I could remake the project in MDF and paint it. But I wanted to try out the solid wood look first.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  12. #1302
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    I've sanded the 5mm parts and looked at the result: about as good as you could hope for, but it is visible. So I'll try to make aluminium cover plates next.

    Regarding the outer frame and preventing things from destroying themselves: I was thinking of glueing both the 600mm and 400mm ones to the "slab", but glueing the 600mm to the 400mm ones only in the two front corners. That way, if the slab would expand, the rear corners would open up but I'd hopefully wouldn't get cracks in other places.

    And if it starts to look really ugly, I could always put flightcase corners on them.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  13. #1303
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    Regarding the outer frame and preventing things from destroying themselves: I was thinking of glueing both the 600mm and 400mm ones to the "slab", but glueing the 600mm to the 400mm ones only in the two front corners. That way, if the slab would expand, the rear corners would open up but I'd hopefully wouldn't get cracks in other places.
    That might work but then, you can't be sure that it would be the rear corners that open up unless you allow them to. Have you cut the frame pieces yet?
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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)

  14. #1304
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    I had to look up "flightcase corners", then realized it should have been obvious!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  15. #1305
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    That might work but then, you can't be sure that it would be the rear corners that open up unless you allow them to. Have you cut the frame pieces yet?
    Nope, nothing cut yet on that front.

    The idea would be that the front corners are glued and the rear ones aren't, with free movement to do as they see fit.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  16. #1306
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas View Post
    Nope, nothing cut yet on that front.

    The idea would be that the front corners are glued and the rear ones aren't, with free movement to do as they see fit.
    Howzabout this then? You could make the back of the box frame in two pieces. The teal piece will actually be part of the panel (violet) and not the box frame. The shorter box frame piece below it maintains the integrity of the assembly but allows the panel to float above it, allowing movement. To discourage the panel from lifting, I'd suggest installing something like table top fasteners. The style I linked are installed with screws only, while others require a slot in the frame/skirt.

    Click image for larger version. 

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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)

  17. #1307
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    Something like that would be a possibility. I'll have to consider the armboard rails that will extend and fix into the frame. I'll try to finish the central part of the turntable first, and then see where I stand in terms of options for the frame.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  18. #1308
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    I just had a really stupid incident with a power tool. No injury, no financial loss to speak of, didn't even damage the workpiece; but still really stupid and somewhat scary. THINK, Treb, THINK!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  19. #1309
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    You launched a cordless drill with a treb?
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  20. #1310
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    Ha! No. I sliced an aluminum yardstick in two with a chop saw!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  21. #1311
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    Thank you for proving my theory that aluminium can be cut with wood cutting tools.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  22. #1312
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    With carbide inserts on the blade!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  23. #1313
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    Only one way to find out how important that is.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  24. #1314
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    Well, nutz.

    The project is to build "not-a-workbench" in the garage. I've built three support frames, one of them more complex because reasons. I've been VERY careful to make them all square. They'll sit on the floor and be attached to the wall.

    Except I stood the complex one up against the wall and it'll either sit flush to the wall or to the floor. Nutz. I didn't get it square.

    Except I did. It's a garage, and the floor is intentionally sloped for drainage. So it's not square to the wall. So I either need to trim the back legs or shim the front ones.

    Nutz.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #1315
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    Adventures in DIY

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Well, nutz. [...]

    I didn't get it square.

    Except I did. It's a garage, and the floor is intentionally sloped for drainage. So it's not square to the wall. So I either need to trim the back legs or shim the front ones.
    Yep. I’ve said words to that effect and usually, with colorful embellishments. I don’t think anything in my old house is square, plumb, or level...unless I made it so.

    It was a busy, busy, day for me. Started with a load of laundry and a trip to the store before I got into the shop. The first task was to deal with the consequences of a decision I made about making the curve on the lid.

    I had pondered whether to cut the curve after I cut the lid free of the box so it would sit flat while I cut the hinge and finger lift mortises. But that would mean cutting the curve with the narrow lid standing upright on the band saw. Not too much room for fingers that way.

    So I cut the curve first while I had the whole box to hold on to. It was also more stable during the cut but the lid wouldn’t be stable when it came time to make mortises. So I made a cradle from a waste section of the box.

    I traced the curve onto both ends and spent some time roughing it to shape with a rasp. I then wrapped sandpaper around the lid and used it as a sanding block to refine the fit. Some double-sided tape secure it in place and I had a stable work piece.



    I got too busy to take any more in-progress photos but I did cut the mortises and make the finger lift and glue it in.



    The lid isn’t sitting quite flush with the front edge of the box, so I have to finesse the hinges a bit but after that, it’s down to final sanding and finish.
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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)

  26. #1316
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    That's just lovely.

    I am open to any suggestions for how to shave a couple of mm off the end of a 2x4.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  27. #1317
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    My favourite weapon for that job is a miter saw. I get lots of practice too; most stuff I cut off a few mm too long and then I go at it again and again until it's at length.
    With sufficient thrust, water towers fly just fine.

  28. #1318
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    That's basically what I'm doing. (When I said "chop saw", it's actually an electric compound miter saw.)

    But that requires taking the leg assemblies apart. I decided I could maintain the geometry by not pulling the screws all the way out and running them back into the same holes. When I'm satisfied I'll add one or two more screws to get the strength back. Have done one so far. Back leg could still be a tad shorter but I think it'll do. Hmm, I should probably stick a level on the top and see how it looks.

    Tried using the sander and jigsaw but no go. Well, the sander would have eventually got there but I'd like to get it done this year.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  29. #1319
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    If you're so equipped, you could shorten it with a router and a top bearing pattern bit. Strike your line, affix a straight edged board to it, and rout away.
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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)

  30. #1320
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    I do have a (small) router, and that occurred to me. Probably don't have that type of bit. But the current plan seems to be viable.
    I did do the check with the level. The wall is vertical. The floor is other than horizontal. As per design. I've got one leg assembly in acceptable shape, tomorrow I'll do the other and then tackle the more complicated one. Which may actually be simpler because it has some additional pieces which will keep it in shape when I take the back leg off.

    You may be wondering why I've not posted pictures on this. It's mostly because of the shame I feel about my carpentry skills! Which, as previously mentioned, are a couple of orders of magnitude better than 20 years ago. I want this to come out decent, because I want my wife to approve. She's being very patient with her car being moved to the wrong side of the garage as it is!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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