31 July 2009

A Little Reconstruction, Part Tres

I ran into a little snag today with my router. I have had it for a long time, but haven't used it very often, but want to get more proficient with it. I know it's bottom-of-the-line, but should work ok for what I want to do with it. I just had to make one of these:

They hold the seat on. First off, I couldn't find the owner's manual for the router. I always like to check them out before I operate any of the machines I have around here because I don't use them all that often. Looked in all the places it should have been. Don't remember seeing it for a long time, so the ex must have put it somewhere. So I went online and found one in 15 minutes. I love the internet! Printed it out for free and figured out how to get the cutter on and off.

I cut up a piece of the right thickness of wood and started trying to set the height of the cutter. Another problem. The thing you're supposed to turn to raise and lower the cutter got jammed up by my weak girly hands and I had to take the stupid thing apart to re-align it. Got that done and then the stupid fences kept moving no matter how tight I turned the thumb-screws. I even hit them with a hammer and they still moved. So the piece I ended up with is not pretty but very functional.

Got them glued and hammered into place. By this time it was 8:00 at night and I wasted all afternoon on it. But hey! I'm unemployed and have nothing else to do. Still haven't checked to see if I have any poly for tomorrow . . .

30 July 2009

A Little Reconstruction, Part Dos

I cleaned up the dried glue around the pegs and dry-fitted some of the pieces together. While I had some pieces clamped I was working by the compost bin on the other side of the garage and heard something happening high over my head. A dead branch broke off (probably a fat squirrel) and fell right where I had been standing a few minutes before. I rushed over to see if my chair was ok and had it cleaned up before I thought to take a picture.

Here is the tree. I put everything away because storm clouds were rolling in.

And here are the pieces of the limb.

Scary how you can get hurt just standing under a tree with no wind blowing. Anyway . . .

I went back outside after I was certain it was not going to rain after all and I got the chair glued together and clamped.

Tomorrow I will clean up the stain some more and put some poly on it if I have some. I have to fabricate a small screwing block for the seat, too. It's amazing the trust we put in a few little pegs and some glue that's all that's between our butts and the floor.

29 July 2009

A Little Reconstruction

Thought I'd tackle one of the many "projects" I have sitting around the house. This is one sad chair I got from my mother. I don't know what happened to it--maybe someone dropped something heavy on it--anyway, some of the pegs were broken off and it fell apart.

I had to really work to get all the broken pieces off the chair and ended up cutting through some of the pegs with a coping saw. The plan is to drill out and replace the pegs and glue it back together and refinish it. I have already used Formby's Refinisher on it and removed a lot of the darkened shellac and finish. It's solid oak and sort of Mission-style and will go nicely with the Mission-style desk my father gave me.

On the left is one of the stringers. Unfortunately, the dowel ends, which were integral with the stringer have broken off. I will have to drill them out and put in pegs. They will not be as strong, but will hopefully stay together. On the right is one of the pieces of the seat frame.

Here are the steps I took to remove the glued-in old pegs.

I clamp the piece to a horse, padding it with a washcloth and get my biggest drill bit and drill through the center of the pegs.

Then I get a skinny wood chisel and a hammer and start tapping and prying out the rest of the glue and dowel. It doesn't look pretty and the edges get a little ragged, but they will be covered up when I'm done.

I can't take a picture of that step because I don't have another hand.

I got these nifty tools the other day. I could really do some damage with these puppies!

I cleaned up the holes with the appropriate size spade bit.

Then I glued in the pegs and glued and clamped some cracks and let it dry overnight.