Sunday, April 26, 2015

Lipstick on a Sow - What a bit of paint can do.

 I made the stack and bundle box from left over plywood, some of the plywood was construction grade and some had been wet. Since I am cheap and never know when  I will have use for a bit of wood I kept some of the plywood piled in my basement for 5 or so years. Keeping materials around can take up space but it can also save money.  The only thing to remember that it is tough to make a pretty project with mismatched and left over materials. My results are usually practical but not very pretty.
 The box is a perfect example of this situation, unfinished the box was rough and fairly ugly.  Clearly it was not going to look good stained either so I painted the stack and bundle box solid grey.  The paint was decent quality but a bit dull, I  decided to add red stripes, a little flair and style just for fun. The reason for the colour scheme?  I had a quart of red and of grey paint on my shelf.

  I put down a couple of coats of grey and then masked off the stripes with painter's tape.


  Usually when I use paint aesthetics have less to do with my decision than practically or weather proofing. So I don't really care what colour the paint is as much as whether is good quality.

  A long time ago I started checking out the Opps paints at big box stores.There are often things that got tinted wrong, or that someone didn't like and returned, but as you can see I got perfectly usable grey paint for $3.00/litre, the red was about the same price. For this type of job the paint is the 'lipstick on the sow'. The bundle box is still a sow made from mixed left over wood, but with a good paint job it is a prettier sow.

  If you collect newspaper for recycling or composting or what ever I recommend this project as a space and time saver.

cheers, ianw


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Earth Day Project

  The other day I was looking around our wood shop at the Ancaster Senior Achievement Centre and found an older book of projects.

  The book was published in 1983 but it still had some fun ideas and the one that caught my eye was:

   We collect newspaper and recycle it at our church as a fund raising programme so there is always a pile of papers collecting in our laundry room.  Mostly a disorganized pile of papers.  It is just a cool coincidence that the plan surfaced in time for Earth Day.


 To fit with the Earth Day theme I made my Stack and Bundle Box from left over materials.  I dug around in my shop and found a collection of small pieces of plywood to make a version of this project. Since the wood was left overs I made  a stylistic decision to stagger the sides since I  didn't want to cut things to the short side length.

   I decided that I didn't want my box to be as tall as in the plan, we don't want that much paper laying around.

   Since this is all square corners it is a natural as a circular saw project. I cut the pieces with my circular saw and a straight edge. I have used my 48-inch Empire Bubble Stick ruler for years. I realize that it is not high precision but it is rugged, forgiving and has helped me break down 100's of pieces of sheet stock over the years.

  I think that woodworkers are Earth Day people everyday.

cheers, ianw