Saturday, January 31, 2009

More Grinding

I made a new toolrest, it's a piece of steel angle with a slot cut in it. The wingnut tightens it. It also has a piece of ply screwed to it for extra support. Here's also a picture of a blade for a marking knife I made. It's still a little rough, and I'll post more about it later.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Mini Square

One of the first projects I made was a oak and aluminum square, it was okay, except it wasn't square. This little square is made from brass(from a door pus plate), and wood. The pins ade screws I threaded in, and cut off flush. The clothespin is for scale. Because the bottom ot the body is not square, it appears that the blade isn't square either. It is, honest.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

New Grinder

After obtaining the proper hardware for the grinder, I put it all together. Since prior to assembly I had worked it all out, it felt like a kit. The base is plywood and has a 3/4" thick spacer on it, and a large block next to the motor(drill). This is all lag-bolted from the bottom. The drill is screwed on to the large block on top. The tool holder is made from three pieces and is all screwed together. I really don't like it, but the nice wing nuts I had bought for it, the matching bolt was too small. Next time I'm at the hardware store I'll by some hanger bolts, and make a more usable rest. I've tested it, it's loud(I can't hear my radio) but works fine. It's pretty slow speed, though I've already blued a blade up(nothing important). The only thing I'm going to change is the tool-rest, and to make the switch more permanent. Besides those things, it's pretty solid.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Toolcase Part 7

I have changed the layout since the last post, because the chisel holder ended up taking up more space than planned. The chisel rack is a piece of walnut 1" x 3/4" x 8". The holders are each 3/4" apart. For the Japanese chisels, the slots have a bevel only on the top, back. This keeps the chisels from falling out the front. I also did this same strategy for the long 1/4" chisel. For the long 1/2" chisel, I cut out space for the ferule, and the bottom. I then used a countersink bit to allow the flange of the chisel rest in it. This also makes the chisel not fall out. For the rabbet plane, just a piece of wood in the shape of an "L". For the bevel-up plane, I cut out two small pieces that hold the top of the handle securely.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

New Junk

After visiting the local junk shop, (They have every thing in there, jars full of the chopsticks that are supplied with cheap Chinese food, the ones in the red paper, to an entire file cabinet packed with old boy-scout uniforms, though they never seem to have what I'm looking for.) I picked up an old drill and a grinding wheel. Here's what I came up with:In the photos you can see I cut off the bottom portion so I could take the switch out. The body is all aluminum, and it's really heavy.
I can't decide if I should improve the aesthetics more, I have these sample sheets of steel with automotive paint on them, and I could use them.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Toolcase Part 6

With the two major components of the piece done, I moved on to the layout of the case. This is what I've come up with.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Toolmaking Books

Here are my most useful favorite books about toolmaking.

Making and Modifying Woodworking Tools
-Jim Kingshott
I really like this book because of the process he walks the reader through in making a tool. It also includes necessary metalworking techniques, and other specialized toolmaking related skills. I highly recommend it, though it is out of print now, and hard to find. I got mine used from Barnes and Nobles.

Making Traditional Wooden Planes
-John M. Whalen
The title pretty much sums it up. It is more narrow than Kingshott's, and slightly slower read, but has some excellent information. Whalen also has another book on wooden planes, but I haven't read it.

The Fine Art of Tools
-Sandor Nagyszalanczy
The first two books are really how-to books. This book is a book of inspiration all in pictures. Nagyszalanczy also has another similar book, but again, I haven't read it.

Now there are definitely other books on this subject, but these are just the ones I've read. Feel free to comment to add a book you've read, and liked.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Bookmark of the Week

It's really bookmark of the last two weeks, since I forgot to post one last week.

This is really a gallery of homemade tools, along with the bonus of comments from judges about aesthetics and function.

WoodCentral Toolmaking Contest's Results

Bevel-up Plane

I haven't worked on this for a while, so I started up again. I finished cutting out the lever cap blank, and finished the handles. For the lever cap, I cut a chamfer on the lower end of the piece, I then made a round over with coarse files, and polished it up. I still have to make the keyhole shaped hole. For the handles, I put on three coats of Formby's High-Gloss tung oil, and a coat of wax. I think they turned out pretty nice.

Toolcase Part 5

After the door's components are adjusted to satisfaction, I painted the pane, as it will be easier now than later. I used milk paint where you add water to powder. I got sea green, but I think a slightly more green color would have gone better with the walnut. I think the sea green would be nice with a lighter wood, such as cherry. I gave the panel two coats on both sides and after each coat, I lightly sanded with 320 grit. I then prepared the door for drawboring and glued it up with a little glue. This is a first for me, and it woked extremly well, the hardest part was making the pegs so they had a gapless fit on the exit side of the hole. This is the door gluing. I also glued up the case. I didn't use any clamps on either the case or the door, the door was kind of self-clamping with the drawboring, and the dovetails held themselves together.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Toolcase Part 4

After the case is done, and the grooves have been made, the joinery for the door must be cut. I am using mortise and tenon construction. I'm not exactly sure whether they're referred to as haunched tenons, because part of the tenon is stepped in order to fill the gap made by the groove running the full length of the board. Layout was simple I had made the grooves not in the middle of the frame, I made them a little more than a 1/4" from the front. So I used that 1/4" as one edge of the mortise, and made another edge a 1/4" from the other side of the stile. I then set my gauge for those same distances, and scribed them onto the tenon. Mortising is very straight-froward. Drill out as much as possible, chop out the rest, and then with a wide chisel, pare the sides of the mortise. I'm not sure how to explain how to cut the tenons, I just used my saw from my mitre box, and cut to the line. I try to fit the joint straight from the saw, but I always try to lean towards a little thicker. For the shoulders, I left about 1/16"-1/32" from the saw, and then trimmed the shoulders with a wide chisel. I also undercut the shoulders with a 1/2" chisel. Once everything is tight and square, trace the inside of the frame onto the material for the panel, and add about 1/4" to every side, or the depth of the groove. I used plywood, but if I did it again I think I would use real wood. The frame was slightly too tight, so I planed the edges a little on each side. I didn't worry about busting through the veneer because it's all going to be painted, or hidden in the groove.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Useful Tool

My first plane was this Buck Bros. block plane. It made shavings out of the box, right after I had bought it from Home Depot for about $12. It was really fun to use(my standards were pretty low), and it would make shavings(not on end-grain though). I still use a lot in my shop-as a scrub plane. I heavily rounded the sides of the blade, flattened the sole a little, and added a bigger handle than the lame tiny one it came with. I use it now for quickly removing wood from the edge of a board. I won't really use it on a board's face, unless there truly is a lot to remove. The bonus of this plane's size is that it is small and light enough to use on small pieces, and the horn in front makes it extremely easy to use. It is extremely useful and my go-to tool for heavy stock removal. On a side note, I don't ever remember sharpening it, but it's razor sharp blade(that I could cut the hair on my arm with) persists, and enables this high-quality, precision made plane to tackle anything.
Not really. At all.(Though it is useful.)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Fixing a Tote

The tote on the jointer plane was broken, not too badly, but enough that it became uncomfortable after a while. So I made a new piece from walnut(not exactly a subtle repair, but that was all I had on hand), and glued it on. Since the original wood was beech, I used normal glue, instead of epoxy. The glue-up is very straight-forward if you keep the block the piece was cut from.