Other Stuff I Like

When I’m not working, sitting in traffic, writing, editing, or revising, I like to do woodworking. Here are a few projects I completed that I’m pretty proud of.

I promised this a long time ago… WALNUT BLANKET CHEST with Raised Panels: June 2017

If you’ve read my blog, you probably read about all the mistakes I made and the mishaps I experienced while making this. Well, it’s all about overcoming obstacles, and this chest was certainly a test of that.

The top left is, of course, the finished product. It’s finished with Watco Natural Danish Oil, topped with three coats of amber shellac, rubbed down between coats and wet-sanded at the end. The photo at the top right is matching up the boards and grain to make the raised panels. The middle right just goes to show you that sometimes, the pieces need to be persuaded to do what you want them to do. A few pipe clamps, some special clamping blocks to allow me to clamp against the mitered edges, a few wooden cauls and C-clamps to keep everything flat, and there you have it–one end panel. And finally that bottom photo, to get these four sides glued and clamped and flat and square before the glue dried… well, you’d better work quickly. This was a huge challenge, but with a few test fits and setting everything up in advance… ummm… THAT is square!

The Millennium Falcon Bed: 2016

Since my other grandkids’ beds are on here, I thought I should go ahead and post my grandson’s bed. I think these nightlights outshine the others. Just a little, maybe. This one is about 140 hours of work, and it has twenty switches and a bunch of LED lights, the Millennium Falcon schematics, and a throttle so he can chase after the Imperial Battle Cruiser in the view screen. As you do.

This bed was probably the most fun thing I’ve built so far.

 

Four-Drawer Walnut Chest: 2010

I made this walnut chest over the course of, well, a long time. First time for anything made of walnut, first time I’d even planed rough-cut lumber, first time for the fluted quarter-columns, the first time for the contoured bracket feet, and the first time for a spring-loaded secret drawer. Shhhh…

I made this out of rough-cut walnut as a gift for my daughter's wedding. The finish is hand-rubbed yellow shellac.
I made this out of rough-cut walnut as a gift for my daughter’s wedding. The finish is hand-rubbed yellow shellac.
This is a twin-size bed I built for my grand-daughter. It is done in the Tudor style, and the window features a night sky (with blue LED night light), and Tinkerbell peeking through.
This is a twin-size bed I built for my grand-daughter. It is done in the Tudor style, and the window features a night sky (with blue LED night light), and Tinkerbell peeking through.
The Castle Bed is for my other grand-daughter. As I was building this, my wife kept telling me it was too big, and would be too heavy. Okay, she was right, but now I know for sure. This one has the night light in the window too.
The Castle Bed is for my other grand-daughter. As I was building this, my wife kept telling me it was too big, and would be too heavy. Okay, she was right, but now I know for sure. This one has the night light in the window too.

If you’re a woodworker and you want to try one of these, just drop me a line. I don’t have plans, but I’m happy to share the experience.

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