Wooden Toy Airplanes

Last Christmas I built some toy airplanes for the little kids. It seems I didn’t post any images of the build here so I’ve posted the photo album below:

Toy Airplane

Wooden (Lego) Boxes

Last Christmas I built some “Lego” boxes for the little kids. It’s the first Christmas they’ve been with us and I wanted them to have something that is special…something you can’t just go buy at a store. Below is the album showing the build process.

Tool (Lego) Boxes

Portable Dovetail Jig Workcenter

I came across a cool design for a storage and set up workcenter for my dovetail jig in ShopNotes Magazine. Below is a photo album of the build.

Portable Dovetail Jig Workcenter

Workshop Cabinet (prototype)

I built a prototype of the cabinet I was thinking of using in my workshop. The design has changed based on the things I learned from this build. Below is a gallery of photos showing the build:

Workshop Cabinet (prototype)

Book Rack (Arts & Crafts) with Through Tenons

Here’s a modified design of the Arts & Crafts Book Rack. My son, Clinton, isn’t fond of the keyed tenons so I changed the design to have shorter through tenons and chamfered the ends where they protruded through the end of the rack.

Book Rack (Arts & Crafts)

Book Rack w/ Keyed Through Tenons (Arts & Crafts)

Here’s a gallery of photos showing my build of the Arts & Crafts Book Rack with keyed tenon joinery. I’ve posted some of these photos before but this is the complete set of photos.

Book Rack w/ Keyed Through Tenons (Arts & Crafts)

Mitered Picture Frame Started

Since I didn’t start this project before Christmas I (obviously) didn’t get it completed to give as a gift last year. One reason I pushed it off is that it has miter joints and I haven’t successfully made precise miters. Gaps in a miter joint are horrible.

There’s no way to learn without getting into the workshop and doing it so I started the frame. Below are the pictures of what I have completed at this point:

There are very small gaps in the miters joints. I’ve got a couple of options for repairing them but I’m leaning toward using a table saw miter sled I saw Steve Ramsey on Wood Working for Mere Mortals (click here to see his solution) use.

One overarching lesson I’ve learn while woodworking is to not panic or get frustrated on a project. Calmly think it out and come up with a solution. Rarely have I had to scrap an entire project. People who know me know it’s tough for me to accept less than perfect. It’s sort of a sport for them to find the flaws in my projects because they know I’m having to bite my tongue not to point them out.

Eventually this tiny issue will get solved and the frame will look pretty good. In the process I’ll have new skills for making miters without gaps.

Nostalgia: Tommy Gun

Nostalgic thoughts are those that come to you causing you to suddenly realize “it has been a long time since…” or “it was a long time ago when…”.

Here’s something that caused that for me. Approximately seven years ago I built (2) wooden Tommy Guns; (1) for each twin. I haven’t built any more since then, only those two exist.

The other day they came to kind and I asked, “whatever happened to those Tommy Guns.” The twins, both in college now, still have them. Pretty cool. I hope they keep them to pass on. Maybe I’ll build more for grand kids. Here’s a picture of Coke’s Tommy Gun:


Corbin’s Workbench: Gas Lifter Arms

This morning me and Corbin installed the gas lifter arms on his workbench. Now the top shelf door auto-opens and stays in play on its own. Here’s a little video of them working:

Next we’re going to install LED lighting on the the door to light the work surface. Corbin came up with a cool idea concerning switching the lights—install a door jamb switch. That way, whenever the door opens, the lights automatically come on. Cool. I’ll put an override switch to ensure the lighting can be turned off when he door is open.

Wall-Mounted Workbench Mounted

Tonight we—Cole, Kyle, Corbin and me—mounted the workbench to the wall in the garage. It’s pretty great that the installation went so well. It was a lot less difficult than I expected. Only took about 30 minutes to install it.

All the instructions (from ShopNotes #14) worked perfectly. Maybe it’s suspected, but I don’t think a certain someone knows it’s a Christmas present yet. I hope he really likes it and enjoys it!