Pens aren’t the only thing I turn

I also make pepper mills, like the two shown below:

Pepper_mill   latest pepper mill

The top one is made from walnut and oak and is roughly eight inches tall while the bottom one is made from maple and mahogany and is ten inches tall.

Both have food-safe finishes and can be adjusted for coarse or fine grinds.

Posted in Wood projects

Another pen & pencil set

Not quite ready to stop with one segmented pen, I decided to make a couple more blanks and make a matched (more or less) pen and pencil set.

I started by gluing some thin strips of walnut and maple together, then cutting diagonally to get these two blanks:

angled blanks

Which I was able to turn into these:


I put a wax finish on these, which darkened the wood a bit, but overall I think they came out pretty good.

Posted in Wood projects

Something I had to try

I was prowling the web one night and came across a video where someone made a rolling pin that looked kind of like a checkerboard.

Looked interesting, and I wondered if it could be done on a smaller scale, and after spending most of a day measuring, cutting, gluing, and turning I came up with this:

segmented pen

Posted in Wood projects

A little project from reclaimed wood

And I do mean little.

A friend wanted a pen & pencil set so I made her one out of some pallet wood I had.

Juanita's pen&pencil

Not wanting to stop there, I decided to take some more of the same wood and make a box to hold them.


A slight press on the dark strip on the end causes the lid to tip up as shown below:



Posted in Wood projects

A Little Fun….

You’ve probably heard the saying “You can’t put a square peg in a round hole”.

You wouldn’t care to make a small wager on that, would you?


Found something from an old project lurking in the scrap pile, and once it was securely mounted in the lathe, came up with this little number guaranteed to allow square pegs to go into round holes.

Now all I gotta do is see how big the market is for something like this….

Posted in Wood projects

Getting Dust on the Turning Tools

While the glue was drying on the picture frames I made, I decided to turn a pen, so I grabbed a hunk of bloodwood and came up with this:


Yesterday I took a piece of babinga and turned this one:


This morning, after wrapping the completed pictures (see post here) to keep them clean until they’re delivered, I made this key chain/stylus/pen contraption out of walnut:


I also took a blank I glued up a few days ago and turned a pepper mill:


I’m using a food-safe finish for this, and took this picture after putting on the first coat.

Posted in Wood projects

Reusing Distorted Wood

A few days ago a friend of ours decided she wanted our old dining room chairs, and when we took them to her place, she asked if I could make her some picture frames.

After giving the matter some thought, I decided to use some of the wood taken from the warped table top (see post here) to make the frames. Here’s what I came up with:


After a light coat of poly followed by some lemon oil, I mounted the pictures and got them ready to hang:


I think they turned out pretty good.

Posted in Wood projects

Dining Table Revisited

You might remember my post a while back about making the oak dining table top. For some unknown reason, the damn thing decided, after more than two years mind you, to warp.

Wood moves with seasonal changes in temperature and humidity, so the occasional seam opening up or even small cracks forming are to be expected. I can deal with that, but this crazy thing turned into an airplane propeller and became totally unusable. Needless to say, a replacement was in order. Here’s what we came up with:


This top is laminated maple and measures four feet by five feet and is just under two inches thick. As you can see we kept the old pedestal, but added the black circle, made from two layers of Baltic birch plywood, below it to better distribute the weight. Since the old chairs no longer fit with the table, we decided to replace them with benches out of the same material as the top.


Posted in Wood projects

Heirlooms Revisited…

I had an earlier post about a couple of steamer trunks built for my neighbor’s daughters.

They recently welcomed a son to the family, and we are currently in the process of making two more trunks….one will of course be for my neighbor, and I’m thinking of having an acquaintance display the other one in his store for a while and see what happens.

At any rate, here’s a couple pictures of the process so far….


In the photo above, I had just started installing the banding along the lower edge.

The photo below shows the trunk with both bands complete.


The trunks are of course lined with cedar, and I took this photo shortly after finishing the first one.


Here’s the second one, which I happen to think came out nicer than the first:


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The way it used to be done…

In my younger days, I found myself needing some full-size drawings for a project I was making.

However, instead of paying several hundred dollars for a board I might only use once, I went shopping, and $50 later had everything I needed to build this, which I wound up using for several years.





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