Welcome to my blog. Let what you see stimulate your imagination and inspire your own creations.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Cupcake box and variations

I've always loved the cupcake box that was featured on the cover of my box book.  However, I knew there was more that could be done and proposed a different kind of cupcake box to Mindy, one of the editors of SSWC.

I started with the iconic "Hostess" cupcake, using fabric paint for the icing, and searched out photos of actual cupcakes that could be translated into wood.  Because of space constraints, only the instructions for the "Hostess" cupcake, lid and base, appear in the Spring, 2015 issue of SSWC.  Since their new website is not yet up and running, it was agreed that I'd post instructions for the variations on my blog.

To avoid a long and unwieldy blog post, I'm planning to use a series of entries, each giving instructions for a different top, and will have all of them out long before you receive your issue.  They all fit on the base that's featured in the article.

Here's the lot of them, along with the coffee cup that you may recognize from the box book.  They definitely look good enough to eat!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Last box variation for a while

I can't wait to get some version of these boxes out there.  They are so much fun to make, and I've tweaked the pattern to making sanding a snap.  Well, maybe not quite a snap, but certainly not a problem for anyone willing to take a little time and care.  Butterfly was fun, and not as fidgety as I thought it would be.  Nexabond is fabulous for this type of gluing.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Box variation

I'm working up a few boxes that use conventional construction, and pairing them with some flower variations.  Here's the first one, using stamens made from yellow veneer and purple flocking.  Still a lot more things to try before I move on to something else.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Off in a new direction

Always wanted to try to replicate the look of gum paste flowers, without having to rely on carving.  This is my first attempt, using petal dust, a cake decorating supply, to add a touch a color on the tips of the petals, bloodwood for the center, and fabric paint for the yellow "stamens".

The box was made from pieces left over from another project.  Pretty good use of scraps!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Air cleaner for my shop

Decided that it was time to go the next step and take care of those little particles that elude the dust collectors that I have.  Did some research, and decided on a JDS Air-Tech HP Air Filtration Unit.

Fortunately, I had some tall friends willing to handle the installation (and ceiling outlet) and I really notice a difference.  When I leave the air cleaner running after I'm finished working, then come about about a half-hour later, that woodsy smell is completely gone.

And, for the time being, except for consumables like blades and sandpaper, I think I have all that I need.  Right!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A really nice drill press clamp

Needing a way to hold small pieces safely at my drill press, I bought a Harbor Freight special, which is essentially a vise grip.  It worked, but was a nuisance to use.

When I received an email from Peachtree featuring this Kreg drill press clamp, and watched the video, I couldn't resist.  There were, however, a few glitches.

The video failed to mention that the bolt from the adapter that goes into the clamp needed to be firmly seated or it can bend.  It also didn't mention that although the clamp self-adjusts to different thicknesses of wood, there is an adjusting screw to set the amount of pressure that will be applied.

Needless to say, I didn't have the bolt fully in, and applied much too much pressure.  Fortunately, after I sent them a picture of the bent bolt and explained what happened, they sent me a new one.

It's quite impressive what a difference the clamp makes compared to holding the piece by hand, and since any tool that rotates has the potential to hurl something in your face or across the room, I feel much more comfortable using it.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Bowl press variation

I've been needing a press that's just slightly higher than the 6" carriage bolts allow, without the fuss of  coupling nuts and rods.  I bought 8" carriage bolts, but the only kind I could find did not have thread running all the way to the end.

My solution was to use spacers that I no longer need, thanks to Dave's quick clamps, so that I could secure the carriage bolts easily.

Works great!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Dust collection for pneumatic sander

Finally got the new set of small pneumatic drums from Klingspor, and needed a way to contain the dust.  I already had a hood and stand from Grizzly, but was concerned about small pieces disappearing into the dust collector.

So, using some scrap wood and 1/4" hardware cloth, Joe built a frame that slips over the top of the hood.  While the draw doesn't feel very strong, it does hold a paper towel against the screen, and the area looks pretty clean when I've finished sanding.  I can take the frame off when I use the hood with the flex shaft and larger pieces of wood, so it seems like a pretty good and inexpensive solution to that ever-present problem of dust control.

Friday, September 12, 2014

How to fix a Seyco sander

Decided to give the sander another try.  After a few minutes of light sanding, here's what I was left with!

However, all was not lost--I applied a few drops of Nexabond to the shaft, stuck the foam back into place, and this might actually hold up for a while!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

If you have to ask, you know the answer

Have you ever asked someone--spouse, partner, fellow woodworker--if a part of a project you were working on was OK, or if it needed to be tweaked or redone?

I've discovered, over and over, that you already know the answer--that it's really not up to your usual standards, but you were hoping that no one would notice.

Perfectionism has its ups and downs, but if you strive for it, your results are likely to be a lot better than if you didn't.