Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Happy 4th of July - Remaking furniture!

Happy 4th of July!

Hello Everyone!  As you might know, I have recently moved from New York to Arizona.  I have been so busy with the move for months, and now that I am here, I will continue to be busy setting up my new house.  All this business is the reason there have not been many postings on my blog.  

I've also had to rebuild a lot of my furniture, and since it is pretty much the same as my old furniture, I have not gone through the trouble of making new entries for it.  Instead, I will post all the recreations I've made in this entry.

Saw Horses:
Remember those saw horses I built last year?

Well, they were great!  So I needed to build 2 more.  Before all my tools arrived from NY, I had bought the lumber I needed for this first project.

When everything arrived, I set up on the floor of my new garage.

Then I went to work!

Before long I had 2 new saw horses!

With my saw horses built and my tools finally here, my second project was to hang up a flag in front of my new house.  I am patriotic and like having a flag.  Also, all the houses around me look identical, so this helped me find my house when driving home.

Entertainment Center/TV Stand:
For my next project my girlfriend insisted I build a new TV stand.  The one I made was very similar to my old TV stand.

I used my new saw horses to help me make this piece.

I also bought a hand planer to replace the block plane I had been using for so long.  This thing made planing a lot easier!

Building this piece was almost as difficult as building the original.  

This new TV stand had blocks on the edges of all the shelves to keep things from falling off.

But in the end it came out great.

Work Tables:
My next project was to create some more work tables for my garage.  I've made these tables twice before:  once in my old apartment...

...and once at my friend's house.

My saw horses are great, but I need a real surface to work on, so I built two 4-foot long tables.

Once the first table was done, I decided to add some 2x4's to the wall...

...to hang my various clamps on.

This helped clean up my work area a little.

I then used the first table to start making my second table.

A power strip was added to the side of the second table.

And my tables are done!

The work tables would have been easier to make had I had an actual table saw - which I had made once before....

This thing scared the $%^&* out of me, so I opted to buy one instead.

To practice with my new saw, I bought material to make a new Vanity table for my girlfriend.  I had made one for her a long time ago, but it wound up being too big for our small apartment.

So it was time to make a new one for her.

Using my new table saw and my miter saw I cut all the pieces.

Both my saw horses and tables came in handy for this build.

After the table top and frame was complete, I added the legs.

In addition to my new saws, I also got to play with my new router and my compressor for this build.

The first vanity table had a mirror attached.  I did not do that this time.  Instead I made a floating platform.

...and like the first vanity, I added hooks to the sides.

Then came the painting.

My girlfriend picked the colors for the table, and I think it turned out great.

She is very happy with this table.

It was also during this build that my garage/workshop needed another addition:

A fan.  And I am so thankful for it.  Arizona is hot!

Next came the bookshelves for the living room.

The originals that I built last year were great, but I did have some problems with them.  Mostly books not fitting, or falling off the sides.

I'll have to do something a little different with these shelves.

My first bookshelves I made a year ago were constructed differently: I made the frame first and then attached the shelves.  This time I made the shelves first and then attached the frame - much easier!

I initially made 6 shelves - 3 for each bookcase.

but I decided to insert only 2 shelves instead of 3 to give more room for larger books.

Like the TV stand, these shelves also had blocks on the ends to prevent things from falling off.

Like the originals, these bookcases required a lot of planing and sanding.

Then came staining - the same used in the originals and the TV stand above.

And finally I had some more bookshelves that look rustic and are super strong!

Since I originally made 6 shelves, and only used 4 of them on these two bookshelves, I decided to make one more.

9 months later I decided I wanted the bookshelves to look nicers, so I decided to add backs to the bookshelves.

The backs were made of .25" plywood...

...which were glued, staples and then screwed to the back.

Then I did a little sanding and stained the new backs.

The backs are nice, but I think I want the sides to be filled up as well.

So I took measurements...

...bought some .75" pine wood...

...and I cut and attached the sides with pocket holes/screws.

Then I stained the new sides.

And the final product is even nicer than the original.

While making some of my rustic furniture last year, I made this box out of scrap material.

I decided for father's day to make my dad a similar box, also using scrap material.

Unlike my original box, this one had a top.

Then some left over stain.

And I also added some hardware to make it look like there is some kind of latch, but it's mostly to know which side is the front.

I had so much fun making this box that I decided to make another box out of more scrap material.

This second box was much larger than the first.

I decided to put the top on hinges this time.

When done, I made this a toy box for my nephews.  I think they liked what was in the box more than the box itself!

Light sabers!
Years ago I acquired many Master Replicas Force FX Lightsabers.  I mounted them to a wall using 2 wooden thresholds painted black.  These were great, but required a lot of drilling into the walls.  I decided to add to the mounts and make it easier to hang.

I simply added more 2x4's to the sides, plus some wood on the back to support it.  I then painted everything black.

And then added some heavy hanging wires to the back so it easily mounts to the wall.

And I love it!

I also decided to restore my dog's feeding station which took some abuse over the years.

The top was falling apart, paint was chipping and the whole thing needed to be reinforced.

I used my table saw to cut new wood to help reinforce the top shelf.  A lot of filler and sanding was done to fix the top and make it smooth again.  Then some priming and painting.

After a few days, my dog's feeding station was as good as new!

End Tables:
Next, I recreated the end tables that I made last year, only I made two of them instead of just one.

These end tables are more-or-less the same as the one's I made last year, except the table tops are made from thinner boards which were easier to straighten than the 2x6 studs I used last year.


One of my favorite builds for my old apartment was my fake fireplace. 

I had to make a new one!

When I built my first fireplace I didn't have a router, so there were a lot of hard-angled corners.  Now that I do have a router, the corners got a lot of decorative cuts.

I opted not to put the "brick" backing on this one.  I also stained it to match all my other furniture.

And I love it!

Computer Desks:
In the brutal beginning of this year, I spent a few weeks making a computer desk and chair in my friend's barn.

It's time to make some new desks now.

I completed one desk pretty quickly, so I decided to work on a second.

When both were done I painted the tops black.

and applied the 'marble' effects.

Followed by some high gloss finish.

I then used Danish oil to protect the wood frame and bring out the natural color of the wood.

When everything dried I moved the furniture into my office.

Rustic Coffee Table:

When I started making this one again, I dubbed it "The Great Experiment".  This is because I had so much leftover 2x4's and I decided to try and use them to make a coffee table.  The picture below shows how full the bin was at the start.

I took the pieces and make pocket holes to connect them together.

After a while I had enough pieces to start building the frame.

When the frame was done it received a lot of filler.

...and underwent a lot of sanding.  Then I made the table top and attached it.

Followed by the bottom shelf.

Then came more filling and sanding.

Crossbeams and bevels were also added.

After a ton more filling and sanding, the coffee table got stained.

Then sanded yet again to make it look rustic.

Lastly, finishing wax.

And my coffee table - the great experiment - was complete!

I was able to use 38 smaller pieces of 2x4.  If I had used the proper lengths, it should have only needed 12 pieces of 2x4.  Now my bin is almost empty, and I have a coffee table again!

I still have much to make for my new house.  New stuff is in the horizon, and once all my furniture has been completed, I can get back to making cool props and helmets.

Thanks for reading and happy 4th of July!

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