Yearly Archives: 2016

Flex-drum sanding station made from a repurposed variable speed grinder
I recently decided to try my at intarsia and I quickly realized that it involves lots of sanding. Much of this sanding involves rounding the edges of pieces in order to create a 3D effect and perhaps the best way to perform this task is with either a flex or pneumatic sanding drum. The softness of […]

Intarsia Flex Drum Sanding Station

Retractable casters mounted to Dewalt scroll saw stand 1
It seems that lots of people have come up with solutions for making their scroll saw mobile so I thought I would throw my hat in the ring. I recently purchased a Dewalt 788 scroll saw with the base and work light (BTW, Grizzly has a pretty good deal on this package) and I quickly realized […]

Retractable Casters for Scroll Saw Stand

Garden bench from reclaimed redwood lumber
My big project over the latter part of winter was this outdoor bench made from reclaimed redwood. The lumber for the bench came from an older, weather-beaten bench that had been exposed to the elements for 20+ years.  When I realized the bench was made from relatively expensive and rare redwood (possibly old-growth), I decided it […]

Reclaimed Redwood Bench

Epoxy is activated by mixing 2 parts resin to 1 part hardener 1
Penetrating epoxy has been used for years to seal and repair wooden parts on boats but it also has value in protecting outdoor wooden furniture from the elements. It’s designed to be applied to bare wood where it soaks into the wood, filling the small gaps in the wood surface and creating an impenetrable moisture barrier. […]

Penetrating Epoxy

"I can't believe I ate the whole thing..." 4
When I built this cedar bird house last year, I was hopeful that it would attract blue birds or some other colorful song birds. So I was somewhat excited to see a “bird” sticking his head out of the house as I was doing some yard work recently. But as I got closer to the house I realized the bird was […]

Frogs in the Bird House

Side-by-side comparison of Milwaukee and Ryobi adapters
More than once I’ve found myself in a situation where I needed to drill a hole or insert a screw in a hard-to-reach location but lacked the technology to easily accomplish the task in a satisfactory manner. Typically, these are situations where there is insufficient room to position the drill directly over the hole so I usually resort to […]

Milwaukee and Ryobi Angled Drill Adapters

Exposed ends of carpenter bee tunnels 2
In addition to repairing nail holes in a collection of reclaimed redwood lumber, I was also faced with the task of repairing a number of voids in the wood made by carpenter bees. This task involved two basic types of repairs: 1)  plugging holes, and 2) filling tunnels. The holes consisted of either entrance holes where the bees burrowed into […]

Repairing Carpenter Bee Holes in Reclaimed Wood

Old nail holes in top rail of redwood bench
I was fortunate to salvage a number of boards from an old redwood bench in order to repurpose the wood into a newer, cooler bench but one of the challenges was repairing the various nail holes that were left behind after pulling out all the rusty old nails. I could have gone for the rustic look […]

How to Fix Nail Holes in Reclaimed Wood

Setting up the jig to cut the tenon cheeks
An angled mortise and tenon joint can be a challenge to cut, especially for those of us who don’t make such joints on a regular basis. That’s where a jig comes to the rescue. Here’s a quick and dirty “semi-adjustable” jig that can be built in a half hour or less that simplifies the task […]

Angled Tenon Jig

Before and after: redwood blank and finished DIY dowel
If you’re ever in need of a dowel but don’t have one handy, there’s an easy fix: roll your own! The DIY approach not only provides immediate gratification but also allows you to create dowels of custom size or species that may be difficult to find in stores or online. And you’ll likely save money. There […]

Roll Your Own Dowels

A grove of black and white oaks approaching harvest-able size
My brother John and I took advantage of an unseasonably warm mid-March day to go for a nice long hike in the woods near where we grew up in the mountains of eastern PA. As I am wont to do, I found myself examining various trees along the way, identifying them by species, considering why certain trees are growing […]

A Walk in the Woods

Cutaway view of carpenter bee tunnels in redwood lumber
When I reclaimed the lumber from an old redwood bench, I knew there were carpenter bees taking up residence in the wood but I had no idea how many – and how much damage they had caused. Boy, was I in for a surprise! The only external evidence of the bees was neat 1/2″ diameter […]

Carpenter Bee Damage

Bluebird house with 1-1/2" diameter double thickness hole 2
What to make when you have left over wood from an Adirondack side table project that was made from left overs from an Adirondack chair project? How about bird houses? In fact, I had enough left over cedar and cypress to make three bird houses. So that’s what I did. The houses were sized to […]

Bluebird Houses

Adirondack chair and matching table ready for finishing
After building some Adirondack chairs, I decided that an accompanying side table would be an ideal mini-project for using up the left over cedar lumber. So, I looked around a bit to get some ideas and settled on a fairly simple design that is similar to one that Norm Abram used but with longer legs. […]

Adirondack Side Table

Traced curves cut with bandsaw and sanded smooth
In an earlier post, I described a simple method for laying out a curved piece for an Adirondack chair back support. I tried this same approach on another chair but this time the piece did not fit quite so well. After mulling it over a bit, I realized that the poor fit was probably because […]

Chair Curve Layout Redux

With the new year upon us, it has me thinking about what I want to accomplish woodworking-wise for the next 12 months. New tools to try, new projects to tackle, new techniques to learn, etc. Here’s what I have so far: Learn to scroll saw. I’ve always been intrigued watching someone cut out intricate shapes with […]

Woodworking Goals For The Year