General Woodworking Videos

Building a Portable Target Stand

portable target standThere are many people, both men and women who enjoy target shoot for accuracy and these take many forms and use a variety of shoot pieces from pellet guns, to high power rifles, bow and arrow, crossbows, hand guns and even air soft guns. Our challenge was to try to make a portable target stand that could be used by any of these mediums, perhaps with a slight bit of modification. The other challenge was to make it from common lumber and to build it in such a way that if any of the frame took too many hits, it could easily be replaced, and this is what we came up with.

For those who are lucky enough to be a member of an organized shooting range, most ranges have their own target stands and backing, but there are hundreds, maybe even thousands of unofficial target shooting ranges where each shooter must provide their own target backing. This portable stand helps solve many of the conditions that endure at non-official shooting ranges.

The materials for our stand are pretty easy, a couple of 1x4s, 2- 2x4s, a couple of short 2x6 scraps about 2"+  long, a 1/4 sheet of Coroplast or Plaskolite plastic sheeting in your choice of color, all of which are available at any hardware or building supply store, and for the storage try, a couple of sheets of thin plywood, even doorskin material would probably work well, or you could even use more Corpoplast - that will be used for a storage tray for unused target sheets.

Colin's Holly Wood Sunglasses

wooden sunglassesWhen ever I start some kind of a different woodworking project that I have never attempted before, I have learned that making a prototype or working model of the object is a great way to learn about how to build it. And this is the case with making Sunglasses. I have never attempted to make sunglasses with wooden frames, but have always wanted to do do this. I have seen them - rarely - so I know it can be done but have no idea what the pitfalls might be.  The first thing I need is lenses and the quickest and easiest place for me to acquire sunglass lenses is ... you guess it one of the Dollar Stores. I picked out a pair of sunglasses, that looked to me, like they would be something I could work with. Fairly flat lenses 9or so I thought) and not fancy. Something actor Jack Nicholson would wear - how could I go wrong with that?

I had given this project a fair bit of thought and I theorized that I could pop the existing lenses out of the frames, then use the frames as a template to make the new wooden frames. It all worked in my head, too bad it didn't quite work in practice.

 

After spending a couple of hours making a jig to hold the sunglass frames, which I would then use a patterning bit in my router table to easily make the inside of the frames, I had made myself a beautiful jig that anyone would be proud of ...

Building a Trebuchet

trebuchetModel making, or more specifically, building small versions - to scale - is an important part of woodworking. All of the renowned woodworkers that I have studied, did some forms of building scale models of their ideas and designs ... or at least had one of their workers do it for them.
There is something fascinating about scale models of real objects whether it is scale model airplanes, cars or logging and trucking equipment like Serge Roberge does in his Replicas in Wood scale model heavy equipment pieces.
I have always been intrigued by ancient machinery and tools and so decided to embark on making a Trebuchet. Some of you will call this a catapult, but that is actually a different machine, you can check this out on the Internet. I wanted to make as realistic looking as possible, at least to what I had seen in replica pictures and drawings.

I decided to use Garry Oak, and dye it to look more like a weather European woods that might have been used hundreds of years ago.

Since I wasn't really concerned if it worked or not because it was only to be a display or conversation piece, I could build this according to what I thought looked accurate. I started off by cutting some 3/4" x 3/4" square sticks that would form most of the machine, with the small exception of some thin planks that would be use on base where the rocks would have been loaded into the sling.

** UPDATE ... for everyone who wanted to see the Trebuchet working, here is the video of shooting the Trebuchet ...

Remember ... this was built just as a decorative piece, but it actually works ....... and ......

Knife Making

Having a desire to make something and knowing how to go about it can be quite and experience. I have often looked at custom knives in awe and amazement with what can be done but have never ventured into the knife making world.

Recently I met someone who is an artist and craftsman when it comes to making knives and all you have to do is look at his work to see why. Peter Demmer is a Canadian knife maker who has brought his European Craftsman skills to the art of knife making. Peter makes all sorts of knives from custom Chef Carving Knives, to hunting, fishing and survival knives and even to everyday utility type knives, you can see more here www.terrierblades.com
Recently I invited myself to his workshop to make a video for our viewers on the art of custom knife making and Peter walked us through the entire process from beginning to end.

He started off by showing me how the shape of the steel is cut with a high-speed water jet tool, to create the basic shape of the blade and handle. The material he uses is special stainless steel that he purchase in large sheets. Once the basic shape of the knife is set out, the next step is to temper the steel which requires a special technique ...

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