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Posts Tagged ‘custom woodworking’

How to Build a Folding Workshop Table with 3 Tops: Router Table, Down-Draft Sanding Table, General Work Table

Friday, April 12th, 2013

Every month we host a free woodworking demonstration at our stores, and each one is taught by our esteemed demo man, Joe. Due to the nature of his “traveling woodworking show,” he built this fold down table that does a few cool things:

  • Easy to store and set up
  • Sturdy enough for many woodworking operations like routing and assembly
  • Table top changes out for special applications: router table, down-draft sanding table, general purpose work table.

The quick video above shows how it works. Is it a robust workbench? Obviously not. However, it is a handy table that can serve a number of purposes for you in your own shop.

Joe pieced together sketches and a parts/materials list you can download and use for making your own table.

Click here for a link to plans in PDF form.

Three tops you can make:

  • Router table
  • Basic work table
  • Downdraft sanding table

How To Improve Your Solid Panel Glue Ups

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

Gluing wide panelsGluing up boards to make solid cabinet doors and table tops remains a necessary and time-consuming part of woodworking. And many woodworkers out there avoid glue-ups because of the machinery (or exhausting hand work) required to get a newly glued-up solid wood panel nice and flat. It takes a wide planer, wide sander, or unyielding enthusiasm for the joys of hand planing.

But here’s a little trick that’ll help out: clamp blocks that help keep the aligned and flat while the glue dries.

Make blocks out of solid 3/4″ material that resemble a 4″ long U shape. See below.  Clamp up your panel with bar clamps or pipe clamps as you normally would. Then clamp U blocks so that they bridge over the joints, achieving two things:

  1. Forcing the boards to align perfectly giving you a smooth panel
  2. Keeping the blocks from becoming glued to the workpiece

In the end, you won’t need to do nearly as much planing and sanding to get the solid panel flat.

WOOD Magazine has free plans for the clamp blocks at this page if you need a visual:

Use one block on the top and one on the bottom to align the boards perfectly

Clamp blocks force the boards to align perfectly to achieve a flat solid wood panel

You’ll Do a Double Take for This Custom Double Neck Guitar & Bass

Friday, November 18th, 2011
Double Neck guitar and bass by Ryan Z.

Neither Jack, left, nor Ryan, right, looks like he'll let go of this remarkable guitar. Photo by Matt York.

Since there’s a world-class luthiery school right in our hometown, Roberto-Venn, we tend to get word when there’s a particularly amazing custom guitar being built nearby. For that matter, it’s a rare occasion when there’s not at least one guitar maker pulling in part time work at one of our stores (and creaming the curly maple piles).

One of those former part timers and Roberto-Venn graduates is Ryan Z, and he recently finished off one incredible ax. It’s more like a double ax. Check it out, the photos are below.

Ryan undertook this project for Jack Casey, a sales representative for JET and Powermatic woodworking tools who wanted a fairly wild combination. Ryan used the dimensions of a four-string Fender Musicmaster bass, and a Gibson Exaggerated SG guitar, then combined them into one black lacquered body with two necks. Holding true to specs, tonality requirements, and to keep the weight of the whole beast as low as possible the bass portion is made of alder,  and the guitar portion is Honduras mahogany. It’s all visually seamless thanks to the satin black lacquer.

All photos are courtesy of Matt York.