Monday, December 28, 2009

Job Guide Shelf - Day 3

As Christmas is now a shadow in our memories and my final term paper has been turned in (and since graded). I have time to take a breather and actually do other things. Many of those things include getting the blog posts up to speed and getting back into the garage to work on the Job Guide shelf.

I spent the last few days with my parents in Alamo, TX where I learned that old people without jobs call themselves "retarded", RV-ers without houses call themselves "full-timers", and the most planned and highly anticipated event they do is "eat"; buffet at 1pm, snacks at 4pm, and dinner at 7pm. Then tomorrow we will sight-see a little...and then go to a buffet.

My parents are doing well, and they are very happy with life on the road. Which makes me happy; not happy enough to stay more than three days with them, but still happy. I'm sure they didn't mind me leaving a day early either, since life in an RV can be a little crowded. Next time I visit, I will have a place of my own to stay. Back at home, I decided to put a little time in the work shop...after shoveling up the driveway, unpacking the bags, and retrieving my 'best friend'.

Earlier last week, during some down time I planned out my separators for the shelf. Originally I had thought that I could just make them rectangular but had my doubts that it would flow with the curved designs on the sides. I had planned to make one rectangular separator and a second more elaborate curved design and then choose the one I liked better, but then inspiration struck. I had seen someone use Google sketchup to make a 3D rendering of a small dove-tailed box. If he can do it on that, why couldn't I use it to design my shelf. So I downloaded Google SketchUp and went to town on it.

After a couple of days of learning how to use the program and building this mock up I decided to go with an angled separator. I will still modify the horizontal shelves but I like how this design came out and will definitely continue to learn SketchUp for future Projects.

Back in the garage/wood shop, I decided to make a template for the separators. I would shorten then base and top 1/4-inch and then angle it near the 2 1/2-inch mark. I would also extend the height 1/8-inch and make some dados in the shelves to receive them. (I will make those by hand this time). So I drew the dimensions on a piece of left over card stock that I had from the lathe table project and cut it out, then I taped it to a thin piece of press board that I saved from a small prefab cabinet I had dismantled.

After that I traced the template onto the 3/16-inch thick press board with graphite.

I then began the cut that would form the top of the template. I cut outside of the line because i wasn't certain of my sawing abilities and figured that I would plane it down to the line after cutting the shape out.

When I went to cut the short vertical area on the front I realized that I would have to have to transfer the template to the other side in order for me to cut it.

With the short vertical cut out and the excess removed, I began to saw the angled section.

I then realized that the crosssut saw I was using would bottom out on the brace of the I had to finish the cut with a Disston 23-inch saw with 6 teeth per inch. A little overkill, but it got the job done.

Having the basic shape cut out, I made traced the lines with a sharp knife to help with the planing (I probably could have done that earlier in the process, before the sawing), and clamped it in my make-shift face vise.

I planed the angled section first, the concentrated on the shorter bits.

I check the smaller areas for square and needed to do a little touching up.

This time I clamped the plane to the table and used it like a jointer. This allowed me to have better control of the cut.

After a few hours of work, this is the template I ended up with. This will now be used as a master template to make the 15 other separators.

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