Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Spring Pole Lathe Update - Pretty Good Progress

I haven't had a lot of time recently to work on the spring pole lathe, but I've made some decent headway on it. I didn't realize it'd been so long since I posted an update. A few weeks ago, I disassembled everything and chamfered the edges of the post and the movable poppet and also put a chamfer on the feet. I just used a drawknife to do the chamfers followed by a little sanding and the chamfer on the feet was just done with a couple wooden planes. With this done I was ready to permanently attach the post to the feet. I split off some white oak that I had sitting in the garage and ran it through a doweling plate I made a while back, ending up with 1/2" pegs. I put 2 oak pegs in each foot, offsetting the drilling process to achieve a drawbored joint. Although I'm sure it wasn't necessary, I added glue also. Those are rock solid joints. If anyone hasn't tried drawboring, I suggest you try it out. It adds an amazing amount of strength and really pulls things tight. And you don't even have to clamp up the joint.

Drawbored post to foot connection

Drawknifed chamfers

Somewhere in all this, my bolts came in from Blacksmith Some massive 5/8 x 10 square headed bolts, square flat washers, and square nuts. No practical reason for the square headed hardware, I just think it was a good look for this project. I also had ordered some square headed lags to use as pikes for holding the workpiece, but ended up scrapping that idea for the finer threads of some square head machine bolts that I was able to pick up locally at the neighborhood Posner store. More on those in a minute. Anyway, with hardware in hand I was ready to permanently ( well, semi-permanent; no glue) assemble the bed rails to the post. Since I was going through about 8" of wood, I decided to drill halfway from each side and meet in the middle. THAT didn't work out very well. I got off somewhere along the line and had quite a bit of rasp work to do to make that bolt go through. But eventually I got it and all was well. I was still a little concerned about the post splaying in or out so I added a 3/4" oak board to the bottom of the feet to act as a stretcher. I let the board into the bottom side of the feet and chiseled out material deep enough that the board is an 1/8" or so above the floor; I didn't want to take a chance on it rocking on this piece. A couple screws on each side through the board and into the feet and then the whole works was back upright again. Boy did that tighten things up. There is zero side to side movement in this thing now.

Blacksmith Bolt hardware

And the other side

Ok, so back to those square head machine bolts from Posner. I ordered a two 5/8"-11 bolts; one 6" for the movable poppet and a 7 1/2" for the fixed upright. I chose the longer bolt for that side in case I wanted to add some sort of crank handle at a later date to make fine adjustments easier. Of course, both bolt were only threaded about the first 3", so I had lots of fun running a die down both of them, only leaving about 1/2" unthreaded. Now I had to get some 60* cones on the end of them. I bounced around a lot of ideas in my head and tried a few. What finally worked best was drilling a 5/8" hole in a 2 x 4 at the proper angle, attaching that to an auxiliary table I'd made for my bench top belt sander and running the bolt through that hole so that it met the belt sander at the angle I needed for that 60* tip. It worked surprisingly well. Now it was time for the scary part, drilling through the 3 1/2" thick stationary upright and movable poppet. After my previous adventure with drilling for the bed rail holes, I was pretty apprehensive. Gotta be done though. Measured and marked both side of each piece to be drilled, chucked up a 9/16" auger bit in my favorite brace and went to it. I decided to NOT drill from both side this time. I guess I was thinking pure thoughts during the process because when the tip of my auger bit emerged on the other side, it was right on my mark both times. What a relief it is having that done. Tapped the holes with a 5/8 tap and I'm in business.

I was SO relieved to see these line up like this

And from the top

And just one more :-)

I've also been working on the treadle assembly. Got a pretty good start on this. The joints are drawbored mortice and tenons. The wood is some oak I had from a never completed project about 20 years ago. Good to see it finally put to use. The design is pretty much a rip-off of Peter Follansbee's treadle from his lathe at Plimoth Plantation. I really love the look of that lathe and tried to capture some of it in mine.

Treadle assembly a bit better than halfway done

Drawbored mortice and tenon

And from the back. The material was different thickness,
but for shop equipment, I thought it was ok. Well, since it
was on the bottom. :-)

Peter's lathe at Plimoth showing the treadle I'm trying to

I think that pretty much catches things up. Now that the pikes are installed I can make the mortices for the arms that will hold the tool rest. Have to finish up the treadle and then go find an appropriate little tree for the actual spring pole. I can't wait to start turning on this thing. I have visions of joynt stools and joynt formes dancing in my head.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Haversack #2

Got bored again the other night. And since I said I didn't have any use for the first haversack I made, it was perfectly logical to make another one. I can't say this one really went any quicker. Made the flap a different design with different stitching. I will say that my button-hole stitch improved a little, even if you can't really tell it from the picture. Now I have an excuse to go back to Colonial Williamsburg and get another pewter button to complete this. :-)

I know I said I'd never have a use for one, but I actually found myself wishing that I'd brought one with me to the Baltimore Woodworking Show this past weekend. Would have been a good way to carry the mortice chisel and spokeshave that I bought. Much better than that plastic bag that the chisel kept poking through. But I could just see myself repeatedly saying, "It's where I keep all my things. I get a lot of compliments on this. Plus, it's not a man-purse. It's called a satchel. Indiana Jones wears one."

Friday, January 4, 2013

Anual Christmas Gloat

I am very fortunate to have a wife, mother, and children who ask me what I want for Christmas and are happy to facilitate my woodworking addiction hobby. Every one went above and beyond again this year as the pictures show. From my wife, pole lathe turning tools by Ashley Iles, a sweet hand-made brass glue pot with electric warmer plate w/a pound of granulated glue, an assortment of Treemont nails, two Lost Art Press T-Shirts, and last but not least, a two day class at The Woodwright's School on Restoring Wooden Hand Planes. Really looking forward to getting back down to Pittsboro.

My Mom got me the Ray Iles scorp, season 6 of the Woodwright's Shop, the new Peter Follansbee DVD on making a joined chest, and a really nice book, Chairmaking Simplified.

My Dad gave me the lock-blade Kershaw knife, which I think I'm gonna keep in the shop. I have a smaller knife to keep in my pocket and it's nice to have a knife like this for general purpose task in the shop.

My girls surprised me with gifts of their own this year. My 11 year old, Gillian, got me a really nice welcome mat which resides on my brick pad at the front door of my shop. And Casey, my 14 year old, made the sweet sign for me to hang in my shop. She used a wood burner (first effort) and got the images for the tools off of my blog site. Pretty cool. :-)

So, thank you ALL. I appreciate all my gifts and will be sure to put them to good use. Man, my birthday's a LONG ways away yet. :-)