The Woodshop Shed

adventures in woodworking and home maintenance, from my shop in an oversized backyard shed

November 2021
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Thanksgiving for Quality, and My Workbench Trilogy: Part 1

Furnished content.
(from Popularwoodworking.com)


Although I did not grow up in the United States (I came here in my 30s), the American holiday of Thanksgiving was not totally foreign to me. The notion that once a year we collectively reflect on the things that …Source

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Oak folding step stool

Furnished content.
(from Lumberjocks.com)


Oak folding step stoolNothing fancy. It's a classic design for which I found some plans online. I had some leftover red oak boards laying around from an old waterbed that I modified years ago. So this was basically free. I assembled everything with dowel joinery.



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Stone Soup Dining Table w Inlay

Furnished content.
(from Lumberjocks.com)


Stone Soup Dining Table w InlayThis will be a long story. You know the old fable of stone soup, right? ...an itinerant pedlar comes to town with a magic stone to make soup…but it just needs a few more ingredients to make it perfect. Yea, right.Well, one of my brothers retired recently and wanted to 'reassemble' a dining room table. Seems that he and a friend had begun this project, cut all the parts, and it needed only assembly. Only after he showed up earlier this summer did I discover that parts had been cut more than 30 years ago, that they'd been moved around the country several times, had been through a flood, and oh yea, Little Bro had no plans and not a real strong idea on how it was to be “assembled.” Indeed, his friend had done most of the work.Begin the stone soup recipe….After discovering that the darn thing had pretty good bones (the cherry had aged beautifully…except for those pesky water marks) and that the parts were cut rather well, there remained only the problem of how to attach the trestle legs. They hadn't thought that through that part those three decades in the past. Part way through the project, brother's wife decides she would like bar-height table legs. But oh, could we make then interchangeable with the original dining table height legs. And maybe a little heftier too.And all that tile she had planned for the inlay…maybe that was a bit too much to cover the thing with heavy tile. How about using some different woods to create patterns. Could you do that?We, in fact, did do all that. I cut a new set of legs and feet from 8/4 cherry and routed to fit the “corbel” supports we designed for rigidity. Little Bro traveled to and from his home six hours away on four different occasions. He elected an interesting combination of wood for the 1/4” thick inlay – more cherry, pau rosa, and thermally treated poplar. Never seen that roasted poplar before…smells like burned toast when cut. Since the legs and center support had to be disassembled, I used barrel bolts and carriage bolts for joinery.It is finished with water based poly. All in all, not bad, I'd say.But after spending the better part of four weeks learning new skills and standing on his feet all day, Little Bro may not ask me for another favor for a long time.



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