Molly Bagby

Jul 052013
 

Today’s Follow Friday is woodworker David Picciuto, who was featured in the Show Us Your Woodworking section of our July 2013 Wood News. David has always been into art and design with a photography background, which is actually what got him into woodworking in the first place. He was looking into frames for his photography and was shocked at the price of them, and like many people decided it would be cheaper to just make his own frames. While he didn’t actually make any frames in the beginning , he bought the woodworking tools to make them and quickly got hooked to the craft.

With a modern approach to woodworking, David runs his own website known as Drunken Woodworker, which you can visit HERE. He describes his website as “your repository for woodworking inspiration and resources. With a focus on design and smaller, crafty projects like bandsaw boxes, wine displays, pencil holders, art supplies and everything else made of wood. I have a growing library of bandsaw box plans, patterns,woodworking tutorials and videos including links, feeds and podcasts from some of my favorite woodworking artists and instructors.” Whether you’re looking for ideas or just want to see some creative and interesting pieces of woodworking, you should definitely check it out!

Below are some of his pieces, which you can see more of at his website HERE.

drunkww1

Picture frame made from maple and finished with pure tung oil and wax.

Thick wood cutting board made out of dark walnut and maple. Large 12″ x 12″ cutting surface and nearly 2″ thick. Very heavy, weighing in at 6.1 lbs. Finished with mineral oil and paraffin wax. No other oils or chemicals has touched this board making it food safe

“Omaha” Bandsaw box made from lacewood and baltic birch plywood. Finished with Highland Woodworking’s 3-part finishing system.

Wine bottle and glass holders. Mahogany, purple heart, red oak. Finished with wipe-on poly.

Dog Bed Riser-Made from cherry plywood with red oak edging. Finished with boiled linseed oil and polyurethane.

If you have any questions about his pieces or methods, feel free to email David HERE. You can also follow him on Twitter HERE.

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Fridays on the Highland Woodworking Blog are dedicated to #FollowFriday, where we use this space to further highlight a woodworker or turner who we have featured in our monthly e-publications Wood News or The Highland Woodturner. Would you like for your shop to appear in our publications? We invite you to SEND US PHOTOS of your woodworking shop along with captions and a brief history and description of your woodworking (Email photos at 800×600 resolution.) Receive a $50 store credit redeemable towards merchandise if we show your shop in a future issue.

Jul 032013
 

A few weeks ago we began blogging about Highland Woodworking owner Chris Bagby and his wife Sanne’s progress with the installation of a Little Free Library in their front yard in Atlanta, GA. The Little Free Library is a nationwide community movement project that involves the creation of a birdhouse-sized structure that is placed in your front yard and then filled with books that can be shared with others in your neighborhood. Sanne has been keeping track of their progress through her own blogging and today’s blog features the theme of the library as well as the physical placement of the library in the yard.
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Previous Entry: The Roof Addition

It’s time to execute the theme for our library. Our little black cat, Bo (short for Bodacious) is the love of the neighborhood. This friendly little guy has endeared himself to just about all of the kids and adults for blocks around our home. He even has some feline and canine friends in the mix! Chris came up with the idea of “Bo’s Books” as the name of our library, and that was all I needed to hear. I scoured the internet for cat images and found a delightful little clip-art cartoon, complete with a book.

Bo, the cat

Bo, the cat

I traced an outline onto a piece of luan and Chris cut out the shape using the scroll saw. I proceeded to sand and paint it. A few modifications to the original design to make it look more like Bo, and then it was complete. I gave a title to the book Bo is reading, a tongue-in-cheek impulse: “City Mouse, Country Mouse!” Hope this makes some people laugh! I found a leftover piece of the luan, shaped it using the scroll saw and then painted it black. I bought some colorful foam letters to spell out the title. I glued the letters onto the board using contact cement. These luan boards will be mounted onto the side of the library cabinet.

Bo hovered around constantly while all this activity took place. I think he was aware that he was being “copy-catted,” but it was difficult to tell whether he was annoyed or flattered by it! I think it’s a good likeness, don’t you?!

bo'sbooks

Now that the library is fully constructed and decorated, it is time to set it up in its permanent home. We know exactly where in our front yard that we want to place it, but we experiment with the placement of a bench nearby. We settle on a placement that is sheltered under a crape myrtle tree with the bench situated at an angle next to it and in front of a lovely shrub that spans ours and our neighbors’ yard. Our neighbors are delighted with our LFL plans and give us permission to trim the shrub and even loan us an electric trimmer that gets the job done in a hurry! We remove the many tangled vines that have crept high into the shrubs and trees that circle the area.

The monkey grass that’s growing where we plan our cozy little library spot has gotten tall and crowded. I haul out the garden tools and we begin digging out the various clumps. They are heavy and the roots are well-established and tangled. We manage to fill two large wheelbarrows with massive clumps. It’s hard work but satisfying to see the area, now cleared of the the monkey grass and filled with small stones  instead. We transplant some of the monkey grass to the edges of our driveway and to an area behind the bench and library cabinet. This creates a nicely defined and sheltered nook for users to browse through the books. I used the palm sander to smooth out the wooden slats on the bench – we don’t want anyone to experience any unfortunate splinters!

benchrocks

Chris finds a 6’ length of 4×4 left over from our deck construction 20 years ago. He follows the instructions for building the post and mounting platform. It calls for a 5-foot post sunk into the ground at a depth of 2 feet. We try this, but it looks too high. Younger children will not be able to even reach the bottom of the cabinet and only the tallest adults will be eye-level with the upper shelf. Chris lops 10 inches off and we try again. Still too high, I say. Chris saws off another few inches. The cabinet now sits only about 24 inches off the ground, which seems perfect. While the grown-ups may need to bend a bit to find their books, all but the youngest children (who likely would need supervision anyway) will be able to help themselves to the books – Viva L’Independence!

post

We’re nearing the “finish line” of our project. Time to invite the neighborhood to a Grand Opening – I went around the neighborhood in the final week of working on the LFL, leaving invitations “from our cat, Bo,” on everyone’s mailboxes to come to the “Grand Opening” of the newest neighborhood Little Free Library.

invitation

CLICK HERE to see the final blog post about the project, with the Grand-Opening of Chris and Sanne’s Little Free Library!

Jun 282013
 

calphotoWe’re back in action with our #FollowFriday series. This week we are following Cal Logue, who was the featured wood carver in our June 2013 issue of Wood News. Cal grew up in several different Alabama towns and began carving over 30 years ago. He carves a wide variety of people and scenes, mostly carving pieces that reflect topics from the Southern region.

On the subject of carving, Cal gives the following advice from his website: “To wood carve one needs suitable wood and sharp tools.  Ideally one will use wood that allows the carver to carve in any direction, much like a bar of soap.  With basswood, for example, you can carve a nose or handle of a spoon in any direction.  Whereas with pine, one generally must go in the direction of the grain.  Sharpening tools is more a mystery than a science.  For example, I will sharpen six gouges (carving tools) at the same time and three will be sharp and three dull…It is vital to anticipate where you will need to leave wood to carve each area.”

Cal has an interesting method within his wood carving, where he uses a drill press to put holes in the piece he is working on, in order to make it easier to remove wood with a gouge in later steps.

As you can see in the photos below, Cal has a lot of interesting carving pieces!

cal1

cal3

calmontage

Another bigger project that Cal has accomplished in his woodworking career is the building of a log cabin with two other people. They built the entire cabin from the foundation to the roof!

calcabin

You can view more photos and learn more about Cal’s carving career on his website by clicking HERE.

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Fridays on the Highland Woodworking Blog are dedicated to #FollowFriday, where we use this space to further highlight a woodworker or turner who we have featured in our monthly e-publications Wood News or The Highland Woodturner. Would you like for your shop to appear in our publications? We invite you to SEND US PHOTOS of your woodworking shop along with captions and a brief history and description of your woodworking. (Email photos at 800×600 resolution.) Receive a $50 store credit redeemable towards merchandise if we show your shop in a future issue.

Jun 212013
 

bissonette1Not only is today the first day of Summer, but it is also Follow Friday! Today, we are featuring woodturner, Ray Bissonette, from Snyder, NY, who was featured in our June 2013 issue of The Highland Woodturner. Although he first got  interested in woodturning while in shop class at school, he didn’t really pursue the craft until he got his own lathe and began to experiment with different pieces. From this experimentation, he developed his “don’t try this at home” approach to woodturning, which has been the idea behind many of his off-center and eclectic looking pieces that were made with an “unconventional use of conventional tools.”

Many of Ray’s signature pieces are made using the following process, as described by Ray:

“I turn the shaft round with a slight taper toward the tail stock, shape the exterior of the cup, then remove the tailstock. After hollowing and finishing the cup, I begin the white knuckle part. I loosen the chuck and shift the workpiece somewhere between 1/8 and 3/16th inches (I don’t measure), re-tighten really hard and cut my first offset section. When that is complete, I repeat the process in 90° increments to produce the progressive twist which I prefer to a “crankshaft” pattern. The horizontal and vertical contours I get are not possible to my knowledge with an offset chuck. However, I’m told the process is inherently risky to the workpiece, worker or both”.

To find out more about Ray’s wood turning and to view more images of his work, you can visit his websites HERE and HERE. You can also email him directly HERE.

ffraybissonette

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Fridays on the Highland Woodworking Blog are dedicated to #Follow Friday, where we use this space to further highlight a woodworker or turner who we have featured in our monthly e-publications Wood News or The Highland Woodturner. Would you like your woodworking to appear in our publications? We invite you to SEND US PHOTOS of your woodworking  along with captions and a brief history and description. (Email photos at 800×600 resolution.) Receive a $50 store credit redeemable towards merchandise if we show your woodworking in a future issue.

Jun 202013
 

A few weeks ago we began blogging about Highland Woodworking owner Chris Bagby and his wife Sanne’s progress with the installation of a Little Free Library (LFL) in their front yard in Atlanta, GA. The Little Free Library is a nationwide community movement project that involves the creation of a birdhouse-sized structure that is placed in your front yard and then filled with books that can be shared with others in your neighborhood. Sanne has been keeping track of their progress through her own blogging and we wanted to share an update on the installation of the rooftop as well as a special little addition to the library.
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I scored some spare shingles from a man holding a yard sale in our neighborhood. He was excited to donate to the project. I love the idea of including others in this project – a Little Free Library (LFL) truly can build a sense of community, and it’s not even finished yet! We still have the roof to design and build; the design will be mine and Chris will be doing the building.

monkI have a lovely little statue – a rather comical-looking, robe clad fellow with a book in hand. His mouth is wide open and he has a joyous expression on his face. Some may say that he is singing at the top of his lungs; I’m choosing to believe that he is laughing out loud after reading a particularly funny passage in a book – perhaps, a volume by James Herriott?! My intention is to display this amusing little fellow under the eaves of the roof. He can serve as a jolly little patron saint of our LFL, looking over its users with bemusement! This is so much fun!

With a design in mind, we begin the roof construction. The overhang will be about 4” all around to keep out the rain, per the recommendations provided by the LFL website. Chris finds a spare piece of plywood in our scrap pile, takes careful measurements – twice, of course – and makes the necessary cuts. Getting close-fitting joints and the angles just right takes some figuring, but we are delighted with the results!

fittingroof

We decide that the roof would look better painted in green to match the front door, so we forego using the shingles. A plus is that the LFL will weigh far less without the heavy shingles and still be sufficiently watertight with 3+ coats of paint on the plywood roof and solid wood exterior surfaces. The quarter rounds holding the plexi in place will also be painted green. So, the same procedures follow from earlier construction: sand, prime, paint.

We measure again for another piece of plexi-glass, this time, a triangular shape. At the Ace Hardware store, I learn that they can only cut in quadrangles, so I buy a plastic cutting tool and a remnant of plexi-glass large enough for our needs. Chris makes short work of this cut. After a little trimming with a hand plane, it fits perfectly! We set it in and cut lengths of quarter round to secure the window under the eaves. Our little monk will have a place of honor. We construct a door in the back that will give us access to the “attic” so that we can change out the scene whenever the urge strikes us to do so. I find an old porcelain knob from my collection of “junk-too-precious-to-toss” that will do perfectly for a handle for the back door. (It certainly pays to hang onto something like this for 20+ years!)

monkdoor

knob

 

Click HERE to continue with the next blog entry in the series with the installation of The Little Free Library into the front yard and final decorations!

Jun 142013
 

These days woodturning is probably the fastest growing specialty interest among woodworkers. One reason is how easy it is to get hooked on the instant gratification that woodturning makes possible. For instance you could start a project this afternoon and finish making a beautiful wooden bowl by suppertime.

Inventor Craig Jackson designed Easy Wood Tools to eliminate the need to constantly be stopping to resharpen the tool edge, which is common practice when using ordinary HSS turning tools. He’s also simplified use of the tool so that you can begin getting great results right from the start.

Since Easy Wood Tools are on sale for Father’s Day, we have a great video our buddy Morton made that demonstrates what Easy Wood Tools are all about and how to use the mini-version of the tools. These are especially good for woodturning on one of the many small lathes that have become so popular.


Here’s another video produced by Craig Jackson, the inventor himself, that offers some additional details on getting started using Easy Wood Tools.

easywoodtoolssale

Jun 122013
 
A few weeks ago we began blogging about Highland Woodworking owner Chris Bagby and his wife Sanne’s progress with the installation of  a Little Free Library in their front yard in Atlanta, GA. The Little Free Library is a nationwide community movement project that involves the creation of a birdhouse-sized structure that is placed in your front yard and then filled with books that can be shared with others in your neighborhood. Sanne has been keeping track of their progress through her own blogging and we wanted to share an update on the installation of the drawer and the door.
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We’ve been busy putting our Little Free Library together! Chris used a scroll saw to cut out a window in the door of our cabinet. Using a ball-bearing-guided router bit, he routed a rabbet all around the inside of the opening, then squared the corners with a chisel so that we could imbed a rectangular piece of plexi-glass into it.  Passers-by will be able to see the books inside, an additional way to invite them to explore the contents of the Little Free Library. We used a 3/32-inch thick piece of plexi, cut to size for us by our local ACE Hardware store. I sanded, primed and painted the cut edges inside the opening before installing the plexi, which fit perfectly. We used screws and silicon adhesive to secure the plexi; it’s quite secure and waterproof now!
blog2a blog2b blog2c

I sanded and painted both of the shelves that came with the cabinet. We will only need one shelf in our library, so one of the original shelves will serve as the new “floor” of the cabinet, separating the drawer cavity from the main compartment of the library. Ignoring the old wood brackets that originally held the shelves, we mounted a new set of shelf supports and used the remaining shelf to serve as the cabinet’s only shelf. The books for adults will be in the upper section and the children’s books in the lower section.

lflpaint3 (1)
Click HERE to continue reading the entries in this project series, with The Roof Addition.