Sunday, November 19, 2017

Roadside Rescue

Last week Eva and I picked up two items being cleared from a local house.  We have a glider rocker in excellent shape that needs the upholstery cleaned or replaced.  The other item  is a home made solid wood front hall storage bench.  Very similar to the one in the following photograph:

 Image result for storage bench

   The item we picked up is in really good shape...except is was painted a glossy brown and clearly had been left in the basement ignored for a long time.

  I wiped away the years of dust and decided to strip off the paint.

  Heat stripping paint is definitely a job to be done in the fresh air and not the basement workshop.  I began the process with my electric heat gun and found it a slow process.  It has been cold here lately and the ambient temperature in the garage meant that the little gun couldn't warm the paint enough. 

  My solution was to switch to burning the paint off with my BernzOmatic propane torch. It was quick, but a bit stinky.

Image result for bernzomatic
  I worked away in the garage for about an hour and scrapped off this much paint. (about a litre or U.S. quart)

  Just to see what results await me, I sanded one corner of the chest where the paint had been burned off.

  It will take some fussy sanding to get the inner corners looking good but I will give the box a coat of stain and a couple of coats of shellac, then try to find it a good home.  

 cheers, ianw

Friday, November 17, 2017

If you got them, Use them-tools that is....

  Two weeks ago my wife slipped on a rock, fell and broke her right wrist. NOT a good day.  After all the fussing was over she has a cast on her arm that limits the use of her right hand. Can you tie a show lace one handed? Can you tie a shoe lace one handed with you non-dominate hand? Nay, me neither.  

   There is one of two sets of lace toggles that I made for Eva today. All she has to do is slide the laces tight and push the toggle down. No fancy finger work needed.  Toggle making can be high art, think Netsuke from Japan, mine aren't. But it might be fun to carve a version of Netsuke.

  Anyway I nipped down to my work shop to make toggles for Eva, I had done this before. When I have available tools, I avail myself of them.....all.
 To make four little wooden toggles I first found a bit of dowel in a box where I keep these little bits of wood.  Then I drilled the holes on my massive drill press. Holding the dowel in a drill press vise.( a worthwhile investment)  After the holes were drilled I used my cordless drill and a counter sink  bit to clean up the hole and make feeding the shoe lace easier.  Lastly I sanded the toggles after cutting them loose with a Japanese style handsaw.  Had I had a hand drill and a pocket knife I could have made the toggles just as effectively, but not as quickly. I do love having a work shop with all the tools. 

  Another drill press job was finishing the Quarto men. 

  Two sets, travel size.

  The day wasn't a work shop day really, it was a clean up the garage and put the motorcycle to sleep for the winter day. With all the bicycles hanging from the ceiling, and the motorcycle stowed into the corner there is room for my wife's car to get in out the the snow and ice. (maybe there won't be any snow and ice this year.)

  Here is a link to my Pinterest page showing a whole bunch of stuff to make for kids. 
                                        Kid's Stuff    
 Maybe there is an idea you can use.

 cheers, ianw

P.S. "The Hare with the Amber Eyes" by Edmund De Waal, is a book of history connected with a collection of Netsuke.  I really enjoyed reading it.