Saturday, October 22, 2011


Thanks for the picture Jonathan!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sharpening Shelf

Last February I posted about the movable Scary Sharp station I made for our school shop. Well, I just converted it into a permanent station:

It was just getting in the way and I had the brackets left over from an ill-fated home project. I might add a second layer with pockets for extra tiles/paper.

It did occur to me that if it had a tight fitting lid that would also contain the front edges of the tiles, I could mount it on hinges and let it hang flat on the wall. Then, when needed, it could swing up, folding brackets would swing out to support it, and the lid would lift up and hook to the wall. Cool. But rather a lot of work to gain a little space - maybe later...

PS - No, that corner of the shop is not really that neat and empty - I just moved everything out of the way to work on the shelf. We moved the woodshop down to the ground floor, which is great, but the room is a little smaller and I'm working hard to get everything to fit.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Mystery Cabinet

This cabinet belongs to some friends down in Oregon. There is something about it that I just love, but there are a lot of things about it I can't quite figure out. Every time I see it, I seem to find some new detail that adds to the puzzle. I'd love to figure out a general history if possible.

I'm pretty sure it is old, maybe as early as the 1700's. I don't have anything solid to base that assumption on, so of course I could be way off. It does have many indicators of age - for example it shows a major repair and some hardware replacement on this drawer front.

The sides of the same drawer show what I assume to be rodent damage. I'm thinking that the repair on the front was for something similar. Also, on the hand cut dovetails, note that the groove for the drawer bottom was left exposed in a pin, rather than being concealed by the tail.

The inside of the upper door panel clearly shows marks from a heavily cambered plane iron.

I really like the inlaid stars.

The crown moulding is a little strange. It's a fairly complex profile, but not smooth at all. It's wavy, like it was carved and not planed. Hmm.

Finally, there are the turned bun feet. Is it normal for the front and rear feet to be different? And I don't know why, but every time I see those feet I think of Bermuda. Where did that come from? I just don't know...

Anyway, if you have any insights or ideas about this cabinet, please comment, I'd love to hear them.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Sunny Sunday in the School Shop

Sometimes, working on the weekends feels good...

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Rust Never Sleeps - Electrolysis Revisited

So the other day while driving into work on my day off - (yeah, I know...) I stopped at a garage sale. Hiding under piles and piles of useless stuff I found two block planes! I quickly snapped them up for our school shop. Oh, and to show you how bad the rest of the sale was, it was "buy two get one free" and I couldn't find a single other item worth it. Sheesh.

Anyway, one plane was a cheap Stanley 110 in decent shape. The other was a rather nice Craftsman model (made by Stanley) but almost totally encrusted with rust. The only hint that it had an adjustable mouth was the adjustment lever. You sure couldn't tell from looking at the sole.

Time for Electrolysis!

You can read my previous post about electrolysis to see my set-up etc. And as always, be careful!

Into the tub - Zap! Wipe it off and back in - Zap-O! Wipe it off again. "Hey! It really does have an adjustable mouth! But still rusted tight. Once more into the tub - Zap-a-reeno! Wipe off and, well I think I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

If it hadn't been getting dark (I do all my electrolysis outside) I'd have done one more long zap to get every last little bit of rust off. But hey, it's a user after all...