Thursday, September 21, 2017

How to make a 2 string DIY fretless acoustic bass from a broken washing machine drum

Recently I found a broken washing machine drum. I got the idea to make a contrabass using the drum and a spruce 2x4.

First of all I used my drill with a wire brush bit to clean all the salts and dirt. 

I then used my angle grinder to grind of the heads of the rivets that hold the flanges in place. I then used an old chisel to remove the flanges. 

With the angle grinder I opened up the holes on the sides.

I removed the little doors and bended the sharp sheet metal edges with a pair of pliers to make the piece safer. 

Using my jigsaw I cut the basic shapes out of a 2x4.

I then created two grooves with my a handsaw and a chisel. Those would receive the edges of the drum.

The contrabass is standing on a tapered foot. I marked a circle at the end of the 2x4 and used my draw knife to remove much material. I finished the job with a spokeshave.

I then marked the center of the fingerboard. Again I used the spokeshave to shape the back of the neck. The spots that couldn’t be reached with the spokeshave, I shaped using rasps and files. I use the rasp to remove much stock fast. The I use a less aggressive file to remove the rasp’s marks.

I planed the surface that would receive the fingerboard flat with a plane.

Using the table saw I ripped cut the fingerboard.

To avoid the fingerboard from sliding around while glue up. I used two small nails to keep it in place. I then glued the fingerboard in place using glue and clamps.

I then planed the sides of the fingerboard flat using a hand plane.

I sanded everything with 100grit sandpaper and finished shaping.

To sand the fingerboard flat, I used a flat foot from an old IKEA table as a sanding block. Using double sided tape I glued a piece of sandpaper on it.

I broke the sharp edges using my block plane.

I drilled the holes for the tuning pegs. I also predrilled pilot holes and secured the pegs in place with screws.

I clamped the wood temporarily on the washing machine drum, to mark the locations of the holes I had to make. I actually took advantage of the existing holes of the drum. I only enlarged them with my drill.

I secured the wood on the drum with four ball headed screws. I also predrilled holes to avoid spitting of the wood. 

Using a handsaw and a small file I opened up a groove that would receive the nut bone. 

Using a sanding disc on my angle grinder, I flattened the area that would receive the bridge.

I then made the bridge from a scrap piece of walnut wood. I cut it to size on the bandsaw and shaped it with my disc sander.

I predrilled pilot holes and screwed the string guides in place. 

Using a small file I opened up the slots on the nut for the strings.

I then measured my string’s length from nut to bridge. My scale was 87cm. I used an online fret calculator to divide the fingerboard. I first used a pencil to mark the fret positions temporarily. I used my pyrographer to burn the marks permanently.

At this point my bass was ready. It has a cool metallic sound. I am really happy with the way it came out, I hope you like it too. 

Thursday, September 14, 2017

How to make a mechanical worm toy out of wood

I made this toy out of scrap pieces of spruce, pine and plywood.

First of all I cut the frame pieces to size using my table saw and a cross cut sled.

I decided to join the frame pieces using finger joints. I made a simple jig for my cross cut sled to make accurate repeatable cuts. I do not have a dado blade so I made single blade box joints.

I then glued the frame together. 

I turned a scrap pine cylinder to size on the lathe. I then turned eight small wheels on it using a straight chisel and a spindle gouge. I then cut the wheels on the table saw and sanded them flush on my disc sander.

I then used my center finder and located the centers of the wheels. I then drilled an off center hole to each wheel. 

I moved to the lathe again and used a bowl and a spindle gouge to turn the worm. 

I cut the worm in half and then mounted each piece on the chuck to finish the turnings. I removed the last part using the spindle gouge and a skew chisel.

I then sanded the frame with my orbital sander. I filled any gaps of the finger joints using saw dust and glue.

I then drilled the holes on the frame. To prevent the wood from splitting I clamped a piece of wood from the back side.

I marked the hole positions of the worm pieces with an owl. I secured the pieces in a plywood piece with a large inner hole. I then used the drill press to drill the hole.

I wanted the toy to have removable parts. So I opened up the holes that receive the rod with a saw. I then added removable stoppers to prevent the rod from moving around!

I made a template for the pieces that climb on the wheels and cut them on the bandsaw out of plywood. I sanded them with my rotary tool and a sanding drum bit. 

I then started glueing and assembling all the parts. 

I also added two dowels to act as the worm’s antennas. I jointed the worm with the mechanism using bamboo sticks.

I fine tuned the wheels and my little worm was ready to roll.

It still needs a few adjustments but overall it is pretty fun to play with! 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

How to create sculptures with the lathe

This is a really cool woodturning technique. It involves multiple axis turnings in the same stock. It is also proof that the lathe is a really versatile tool, you can actually kind of draw with it.

I begin the process using stock that is not square. It is kind of extruded rectangle. I begin by marking three center points in each side of my stock. The center points are in line on each side. Also if you connect the centers of each side they should create parallel lines.

I then chuck the stock between centers between the center points. Now I remove stock from both sides.

Then I remount the piece from the first outer pair of centers. This way I remove stock only from one side of the material. In this eccentric turning the lathe should be set in a low speed to avoid many vibrations.

You should also sand each part separately, before you rechuck the material to create other forms.

This way I can actually create really interesting shapes on the lathe. I can also create ears and noses from a piece of stock witch is chucked eccentrically. 

Also in a few cases you can create mirrored images. For example you turn one ear and then spit it in half with a saw, and you got two ears. Or perhaps you can make a butterfly this way!

Using eccentric turning you can actually create a huge variety of forms and avoid the symmetry usually created in most woodturning projects.

It is a really creative way to use the lathe!

Thursday, August 31, 2017

How I made a DIY wooden handle for a Japanese pull saw

A while ago, a friend gave me a couple of Japanese pull saw blades.

I made a maple handle for one of them.

First of all I made a couple of templates for the handle, out of a piece of cardboard. 

This is not a traditional Japanese design. I wanted to combine a few Greek tradition elements in it.

I then cut a piece of maple in half on my table saw. I completed the cut with two passes.

I cleaned up the saw marks with a hand plane.

I then traced the template on one piece. I used the router with a straight bit to make the female part of the handle, that receives the blade.

I then cut both pieces of the handle with my jigsaw.

I drilled two holes that would receive bamboo pins. The pins prevented the pieces from moving around during the glue up process.

I then glued everything up, using two part epoxy glue.

I used a flush trim saw to cut the pins flush.

I shaped the handle using a spokeshave, cylindrical rasps, triangular rasp and flat rasps.

I removed as much material as I could with the spokeshave. This tool is really fast and leaves an awesome surface behind,  but I could not reach all the areas with it.

Before shaping I used a pencil to mark the areas from where I would remove material. I begun by removing much material with the rasp and then removed the rasp’s marks with a finer file. I finished shaping with sand paper. I used 100 to 320 grit.

I finished the handle with two coats of clear water based varnish while sanding between coats.

At this point the handle was ready and I am really happy with the way it came out!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Have a nice summer, from me and Scrapy, see you in September

It's been a productive season. I would like to thank you all for your love and support.

I wish a happy summer to all.

See you again in September with more woodworking projects!


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

How I made my first Greek fishing boat model

I have always wanted to make a traditional Greek boat model. I made this one out of plywood and spruce. 

I would really like to thank naftotopos for the information I found about naval modelism.

First of all I designed the templates of the hull based on a basic blueprint.

I then glued the templates on a piece of plywood and cut out the pieces of the centerboard out of a piece of 6mm marine plywood. This is actually called the fish bone of the boat.

I then sanded the parts and glued them together.

Using a feather board on my table saw, I cut thin stripes of spruce.

Using nails as cIamps I glued the two upper pieces of the carcass.

I then cut more thin stripes. I bended them to shape using a pair of pliers. One side of the pliers was covered with a brass piece to prevent the pliers from cutting the wood all the way. I also used a chisel to shape the strips to my needs. I used pins to act as clamps for glueing the stripes in place.

Using my rotary tool, I sanded everything with a mini drum sander. I glued in small pieces of wood for the big gaps and then filled the rest with wood filler. After the wood filler dried I sanded everything smooth.

I then cut a couple of spruce pieces on the bandsaw to make the paddles. I cut as much material as I could on the bandsaw and then finished shaping them with a sharp knife and sandpaper.

I then cut the pieces of the base on the bandsaw. This will act as a display base for my boat.

I glued the floor pieces of my boat. Using the rotary tool I cut out grooves on the ribs of the boat. On those grooves I glued the side pieces.

To create some wider stock, I cut two thin boards on the bandsaw. I jointed them on my hand plane (which was mounted upside down in my vise). I then glued those pieces together. I clamped them on a clamping jig I made. The jig is two boards screwed on the bench. A wedge is hammered in place to force the two pieces against each other.

I then glued the back and front pieces of the top of my boat. To bend those pieces to shape, I dipped them in water and forced them against the tip of my heat gun.

I then glued on the rest of the top. I trimmed the top flush using a chisel and my rotary tool with a drum sanding bit.

I then glued a few more details in place and cut the twarts of the boat in shape.

I then shaped the handle bases on a piece of sandpaper. I then glued them in place.

To make the handles, I chucked a piece of square stock on my drill and turned it to shape with a piece of sandpaper. 

I then painted my boat using oil paints. I did that because those paints are water proof!

I used the traditional colors of the Greek fishing boat. White, blue and red.

At this point my little model boat was ready. It came out nice for a first attempt on the subject!

I hope you like it!