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Building an Arrowhead Picture Frame

Now everyone has the pleasure of having "family heirloms" that can be passed down in families ... sometimes you have to start somewhere with something that can be passed down, which is precisely what this Arrowhead Picture Frame project was to accomplish. Many of the arrowheads in this collection were broken, probably during their making. I'm sure with the rudimentary tools that were used in the making of flint arrowheads, a good portion were damaged or broken during their making.

The few, more-less complete arrowheads that survived have been granted a special picture frame that can be handed down family to family over the course of time and will become a coveted collection over time.

 

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Dust Control Options in the Workshop

There is lots of good information on dust control all over the internet so this article is more about what I do in my workshop than it is about getting into the specific details and health hazards of wood dust which is already covered in detail on many other websites.

The most central part of my own dust control is my dust collector, which operates on a 110 volt system and consists of one filtration bag and one plastic reservoir collection bag. The dust collector is only turned on when I am using a woodworking machine and I have to manually plug it into each machine as I use that machine. It is the most manual system for dust control, but it works, and in my small shop it is not that big a bother to me. I have retrofitted the dust collector with a One Micron filtration bag and compared to the bag that was on the dust collector when I purchased it, the new bag does prevent the finer particles of dust from escaping the the collection system, I can see the difference.

The same dust collector is also used on my bandsaw, router table and reciprocating sander by using a 4 inch to 2 inch step down adapter to accommodate the 2 inch collection port on those tools.
The only tool that is still waiting for a more effective dust control system is my sliding mitre ... and I now have a solution, all I need is a bit of time to implement it. 

How to Joint Wood with your Planer

planer jigNew woodworkers are often confused by the difference between jointers and planers. I know this because I get asked what should I get first, a jointer or a planer, and my answer has not changed on that topic, in my opinion the jointer is probably the best choice for most people, and if you have planer, you will still need a jointer. I often wonder if one of the reasons for that is because we frequently call "thickness planers" the shortened term of "planer" and "jointer" terms is shortened from "surface jointer".
I have seen people trying to "plane" wood on a jointer and what happens most of the time is you end up with wood that is wedge shaped. Similarly, jointing on the planer, is possible in some instances but you need to know how to do it in order to get usable wood.

The best and safest woods to joint using a planer are thicker boards, that will need to be long enough to satisfy the safety aspects of your planer. Most planers need wood to be at least 14" - 16" long, otherwise you risk the wood getting turned around inside the planer and either damaging the machinery and or the user. Something well worth avoiding.

Working with Plastics to Build an Engraver Stand

There are many things that plastics can help us out with in the workshop from creating certain jigs to making new throat plates for your table saws. The nice thing about working with plastics is that you can pretty much use all you existing woodworking tools to cut drill and shape it into the form you need. There are a few things to know about working with plastics, like what bits and blades to use, but other than that, it's not difficult at all.

For our part, we are building a stand for our laser engraver that will have a place above the engraver for a laptop computer to sit. This will save us a lot of space by stacking the units rather than having them side by side.

 

 Working with plastics is fun and something different to do and for some projects, it's can be used to make special jigs or augment new or existing projects.

Turning a Mortar & Pestle on the Lathe

mortar and pestleI don't get visitors in the workshop very often, but when I do it's a real treat. In this episode I have the delightful Pailin visiting me from http://hot-thai-kitchen.com  Pailin has asked me if I can make a wooden Mortar and Pestle for her to use in her kitchen and in her YouTube videos.

I have never made a mortar and pestle so it's great to have someone around who not only uses them but knows what to look for when selecting them as she can show me the exactly how it needs to be shaped and turned.

What she doesn't know, is that she is going to have a bit of a hand in wood turning herself so she can see exactly what it's like to create your own kitchen utensils and have that same sense of accomplishment as you get with cooking a great meal.
What Pailin has promised to do is show ME how to cook some delicious Thai RIBS and here is the link to that video to watch me learning to cook Ribs !!!

To start off with, I laminated 3 pieces of hardwood together using wood glue and clamping them firmly, and letting them dry and harden overnight ....

Making a Standing Desk

"What's new is old and what's old is new". I haven't heard that saying in a long time but I had forgotten how true it is. Standing desks have been around for decades that I know of and probably for centuries in one form or another, but all of a sudden, they are "new" and "trending".

The main reason of course that standing desks are becoming so popular is not because of where they are used but because of why they are used ... to get people standing in stead of sitting, which of course burns off more calories and helps to reduce our overweight society. Not a bad idea really.

Standing desks have, and are being used in many commercial and industrial situations. Shippers and warehouse people couldn't function with out them, they are always on the move but still need a place to fill out paperwork before they are on the move again. Architects and people in the art world, especially those working on larger pallets need these kinds of desks because they are moving around them in many cases, and the list goes on.

The neat thing about standing desks is that if you find your need to sit at them for s longer time, you just need to pull up a stool and now you have a place to sit, and the good things with stools, they still make the body work because they don't have back support so they still help us burn more calories while exercising our muscles.