Cradle Pegs

When I was designing the cradle I went back and forth about what I would use for the though tenons.  I really like the look of through tenons and found quite a few options I responded to, but they were all linear spikes that didn’t feel right with the curves of the cradle.  I decided I needed to come up with a curved, or rounded tenon.  I also wanted to create one that would be easy to take in or out when the time came.

Sketchup was certainly my friend on this project:

Sketchup

My Sketchup helped me realize the head needed to be curved.  My sketchup skills however were not going to allow that!

Once I was happy with the design I needed to approach the one tool in my shop that I had yet to even come close to perfected–the lathe!

I started by glueing up two pieces of walnut.

I started by glueing up two pieces of walnut.

Cradle peg02

Next I headed to the nearly unused lathe to start to rough my stock

Next I headed to the nearly unused lathe to start to rough my stock

Based on the lines I roughed in--the pegs actually began to take shape.

Based on the lines I roughed in–the pegs actually began to take shape.

Cradle peg05

As I got closer, I cut the pieces down in order to create a smooth curved top for each.

As I got closer, I cut the pieces down in order to create a smooth curved top for each.

Dance of the Wooden Soldiers

Dance of the Wooden Soldiers

Next I headed to the band saw in order to cut the pegs  cleanly in half.  I don't use these wooden clamps often  enough, but sometimes they really come in handy!

Next I headed to the band saw in order to cut the pegs cleanly in half. I don’t use these wooden clamps often enough, but sometimes they really come in handy!

and then there were eight...

and then there were eight…

I had the cutest of shop assistants help me sand each of them down.

I had the cutest of shop assistants help me sand each of them down.

I laid each tenon out in order to trace out the mortise.

I laid each tenon out in order to trace out the mortise.

Cradle peg13

This made for a snug fit!

This made for a snug fit!

I must say this was really the 1st project that I had created using the lathe.  I am no turner (yet), but can see how the lathe and what I can create with it will begin to be in integral part of my designs and woodworking experience.

Thanks for stopping by the shop.

20″ & 40BF

Quite a weekend in the Northeast!

We got a little dusting this weekend!

I started the weekend with a private dovetailing lesson (more on that in the next post), when the snow started coming down, and boy did it come down!  By the time we were done we had 20″!!  We live on a mountain that seems to have it’s own climate.  It could be dry in town, and we could be have a blizzard at our house.  But in this case, as you know, the Northeast got hit pretty hard witha pre-Halloween storm.  Our accumulation is just more than yours!

So my kids played in the snow, my wife sat, curled up reading her ipad and I headed to the shop to get going on the twin cradle.  Life is good!

I must admit, this is the most unsupervised milling I’ve done to date.  I’ve got a powermatic 8′ Helvetica jointer and a dewalt 735 planer, which I’ve used for small projects, but this was what I bought the powermatic, a serious project with beautiful stock.  Enough messing around, it was time to put this machine to the test.  I was not disappointed. I was treated to smooth, easy cuts that revealed the beautiful grain and color of the cherry.  Awesome.

Rough Cherry from Berkshire Products

A little back story on the jointer and planer.  As I starting getting serious about woodworking several years back, I realized, as many do, that this was going to require a little more precision, both from the wood and the tools (and of course me!). You see, wood needs to be dry and square and….well, lets assume you know that if your reading this blog!  But seriously, it wasn’t that long ago when things like that were like a light bulb going on in my head.  At this point hand tools were still more intimidating than power tools, so I went the power tool route.  After doing some research and looking at what I could afford, I decided on a Jet JJP-10BT Planer/Jointer combo.  Talk about a deal!  I could get BOTH machines in one for around 400 bucks!!  Awesome!!  It’s a two-fer!  Well you know how this story ends. In fairness, the jointer portion worked ok, but the planer really never worked right and switching the machine between the two operations wasn’t a nightmare, but it was just stupid.  So I have a $400 collecting sawdust in the basement.  Low ball offers are being accepted.

So like all bad relationships I moved on.  I saved up and bought the Dewalt 735 on sale at Lowes and when Amazon had a sale on powermatic tools I jumped on it.  Of course I had to get their awful credit card, but it was 0% financing for 18 months and 20% off.  Such a deal!  I can justify anything.  As the old adage goes “you get what you pay for”.  I saved, I paid for quality and I’m really happy.  Both machines did not let me down.  It almost seemed like I knew what I was doing!

Milled Cherry

Max on the planer

Max

The best part of the day was spending time with my assistant in the shop.

Dust collector is full

*Milling wood creates lots of saw dust.

Note to self:

Empty dust collector before it backs up all over shop.

Done! All square and ready to go.

Sleeping cherry….

Zzzzzzzzzzzz

Remember to cover your milled cherry as it can stain with exposure to light. Goodnight wood……