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Tesla Power

May 26, 2011

We had yet another bad storm blow through our area last night right around bed time. This storm knocked the power out to our neighborhood. It is not unusual to have this type of thing happen during storms here in southern Indiana and I had not heard any limbs fall so I went to bed.

Around 3 am my wife and I were jolted awake by an extremely loud buzzing sound – the sound of electricity. When our eyes sprang open we found our room alit in an eerie reddish-yellow color. I ran to the window to look out and this is what I found!

Apparently a power line had fallen during the winds. How I do not know because there are no tall trees near the line. When the electric company turned the power back on, this line was arcing like mad! The grass around the line did catch fire but luckily it did not spread far due to the recent rain. By the way, the cars that you see backlit are ours!


Changing Station Day 3

May 23, 2011

Well I did manage to get a bit of shop time in today. My son-in-law came over and I showed him how to chop mortises and saw tenons. He did pretty good! He chopped 3 mortises and fit 3 tenons. Another short afternoon and one of the side frames will be joined. I think he had fun.


While he worked on that, I worked on making a back plate for my home thermostat. I took a small cut off from the baby changing station, ripped it open, then glued it book matched. Last week I had my wife pick up a piece of inlay from Woodcraft while she was in Parkersburg West Virginia. I cut grooves around the outside edge and set the inlay with miters at each corner. Now to let it set overnight then scrap it flat. Not too shabby for an afternoon.


Baby Changing Station Day 2

May 15, 2011

Not much to report on day two. I jointed two reference faces on 5 pieces that will make the side frames. I did also chisel one mortise and cut one tenon before stopping for the day. I cut the offset for the tenon on the wrong side. Oops! Luckily this is the first tenon so I will just fit it to the next mortise I cut. That’s what happens when you get in a hurry! I hope to have more to report soon.

By the way, cutting mortise and tenons in the African Mahogany I picked up is sweet! I have heard it can be pretty hard wood, but the batch I picked up I would rate closer to cherry than oak.


Roubo Update

May 15, 2011

I have managed to get a bit of work done on my roubo bench build. I now have all of the legs laminated together and all of the standard and dovetailed tenons cut and fit. However in the last month in my area it has been raining non-stop and the Humidity in my shop shot up to over 70% (some days over 80%) so at the moment none of the joints fit! But because I expect the current humidity to be higher than average I am going to wait for it to drop rather than re-fit them. I was hoping to get the legs and stretchers on the bench before beginning the baby changing table build that needs to be complete in August, but life has other and for me. So I guess this project will just have to sit in the corner for the time being!


New Tools

May 15, 2011

It has been awhile since I have made a post, but it has also been awhile since I have managed to get any time in the shop! Hopefully that will change soon.

There have been a few big changes in my shop. Although I enjoy working by hand, it was just too time consuming to mill all the lumber by hand when I also have a full time job. So I took the plunge and spent some serious money on a Jet 12″ combination jointer/planer!!



So far it is great! Plenty of power and having a 12″ jointer is sooo nice! You may notice there are also some 4″ hoses hooked up to the machine. Those are running to a 650cfm Rikon single stage vacuum. It was only about $50 more than the wall mounted versions sold by Grizzly and Rockler and it came with a 5 micron upper bag. However, as with all single stage vacs, the large shaving that come out of the jointer clog the system quickly. I added a 40 gallon drum with the Rockler dust separator ports between it and now VERY little dust make it all the way to the vacuum. I highly recommend the dust separators – very inexpensive and they work as advertised.


I plan to write up a review of all the equipment after I have put some serious hours on them. But so far I am very happy with all of the purchases!

Changing Station Day 1

March 28, 2011

Yesterday my son-in-law and I went to pick up the lumber for the baby changing station. I had planned on making it out of cherry; however, the cherry was really rough and had a LOT of sap wood. Luckily the African mahogany was on sale and was in excellent shape so I figured what the hell! Today before work I was able to get out into the shop and cut out the oversized rough stock for the rails, stiles, and stretchers. I still have a good full morning of work left to rough out all the lumber for the panel and shelf glue ups.

Roughing out lumber is one place I do love power tools – ripping all these pieces without my bandsaw just does not sound like fun!


The Beast Stands! (sort of)

March 26, 2011

I have finally gotten all of the dovetailed tenons cut and fit. I could not resist turning it over and checking the height. It is amazing just how sturdy it is already even though the legs are only 1/4 of their final size and not glued in place. I could work in it already if I had to. I have a LOT of work left to do, but it sure feels good to finally see it start to resemble a workbench. I tell you what, getting this off the bench and turned over all alone took some muscle! Once I get the legs and stretchers complete I doubt I will be able to do anything but slide it across the floor without help.


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