Tooling Around the Workshop

As the winter slipped away (all month of it), spring played a flirtatious game with us here in Croatia. After a slow thaw and another month of cool nights, around mid-March we kicked it into high gear, weather wise, and Spring has sprung!

This year I’ve been more motivated to do some woodworking when the weather was warm enough. My workshop is enclosed and insulated, but not heated, so cool nights would kill my desire. When its too cold to feel your hands, its too cold to work! But forget that jazz, because we’re back on track and I’ve been busy tooling around the workshop!

Tooling around the Workshop
Adirondack Chair #7 in the works!

I’ve started my 7th Adirondack chair a couple of weeks ago. I keep doing small bits and eventually it will add up to a finished chair. Haha. I’m not in a rush, but it should be finished soon. However, I made 2 little projects, without building plans or guides and they turned out great. Well pretty good at least.

First, a maple leaf clock. I built this to remind myself of the Canada I left to live in Croatia. Of course I’ll never forget Canada, but its cool to have this little reminder of the people I still call friends and family over there. And that’s what it does. I ordered the clock workings from eBay for dirt cheap. Free delivery from China, I love that stuff. Hehe. Although, the problem is always waiting the 2-6 weeks for delivery. However, for the clock, that wasn’t an issue as I sat on the delivered workings of the clock for at least a month before I started anything. Oh yeah, here it is…

Butcher Block Maple Leaf Clock
Butcher Block Maple Leaf Clock

Those are individual pieces of wood that were clamped, glued, sanded and stained. I had a bit of a time cutting the hole in the middle for the clock to poke through. The hole was a nice size, but it wasn’t clean, or even in the middle. I don’t have a drill press, but I’m looking forward to getting one… some day. Its also a tad small, for going on a wall, so it might end up being a stand-up clock. I still enjoy it.

So, during the build, I was using a drill bit, that I also got on eBay, and it worked well, but getting the hole started was my issue. By just holding a hand drill and pushing into the wood there was bound to be some slippage and that cost me a perfect hole in the middle of the wood. Its all good. Luckily the black rubber cover washer fit over my not so great hole and its not even noticeable… until you start poking around.

About 2 months ago I saw a video on Facebook. It was maybe 30 seconds long but showed how to make a magnetized bottle opener. So when you open the bottle, the caps are caught automatically by the magnet. Of course you can’t just have a magnet stuck to some wood, you need to make it better than that! From that 30 second video and after waiting, about 2 months, I had finished one cool little project. Here it is…

As you can see it works great. I should really get some super high frame rate of the magnet doing its magic, that would be cool. Still, its a super easy project, although I did make it unnecessarily more difficult for myself… as usual. First off, I bought the wrong drill bit. I knew I was going to order a 50mm round magnet, and I needed to be able to bore out a 50mm hole, of course. But, I didn’t buy a boring bit, I bought a hole cutting bit. So to be clear…

Tooling Around the Workshop
This is the wrong one, but I made it work!
Tooling around the Workshop
What I really needed!

The problem was that the first bit will cut a hole in the wood, but it has to be all the way through. Originally the plan was to bore a hole out of the back of the bottle opener and when I was putting the bit on the drill, that’s when I realized my mistake.

However, luckily for me, I was able to find a nice thin, yet strong piece of scrap wood that I could use to clamp and glue to the main base, which I cut a whole straight through with my big red “stupid” hole cutter. It actually worked pretty good, but I had to add a full day to the build time because I had to let the glue dry.

I also managed to get a nice little bevel in there, but its likely not even visible in these pics/vids. Regardless, I’m super happy with the results and thought I’d share it with you for inspiration! I think they’d make great gifts for anyone who enjoys a summer beer and it would also be pretty easy to customize the build, add a print patter, paint it, etc.

Well that’s what’s been going on over here, have a good one!

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