General Woodworking Videos

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 ...

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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 ......

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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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Pallet Furniture - Make a Bookshelf

Every woodworker loves to receive FREE WOOD, such as pallet wood. But like most things that are free, there is a catch and that catch is the free wood can dull or even ruin some of your good woodworking blades so special precautions are needed. Even after you have dis-assembled a pallet, and you think you have removed all the screws and nails, there could still be some left that only a woodworking metal detector will find (click read more to see links) ... OR, even worse, there are almost always little rocks and dirt that are ground into the wood that will dull or ruing a blade instantly.

I love to use pallet wood for certain projects, it gives a great look with little work, but most often when I am using pallet wood I will only use my circular saw, my jig saw and my reciprocating saw. Blades for these units are reasonably prices and easy to get. I NEVER run pallet wood through my jointer, planer or bandsaw, and only occasionally with a throw-away blade will I use my table saw.

To me, the trick with making pallet furniture is to make it look elegant, despite being made from pallet wood. In the case of making this bookshelf, in order to make the bookshelf look less clunky, we decided to change up the end pieces ....

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