Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Storage Cabinet with Cork Board Door

A while back I converted my dog's old feeding station into a safety drawer for my workshop.

Inside are my protective visor, ear muffs, breathing masks, safety goggles, knee pads and nitrile gloves.

This drawer works well, but I must be honest - sometimes I forget I have some of the safety equipment that I have simply because I do not access that drawer often.  So I sought to make a safety storage cabinet that hangs above my table saw.  Currently I have my cork board hanging there.

I don't have any other good places to hang my cork board, so I decided to design a cabinet that will store my equipment and use the cork board as the cabinet door.

I made some simple designs in Sketchup and printed my plans.  Lately I have been using a lot of my scrap wood for my projects rather than going out and buying new wood.  And for the past 2 months or so, I have practically bought no new wood.  I think I'll continue saving money with this project and simply use what I have on hand - with one exception.  I plan on using peg board for the back of the cabinet.  Unfortunately I have no peg board on hand, but I don't mind spending $5 for a 2'x4' sheet.

The frame for this cabinet will be made out of some scrap 2x4 wood.

I ran all the pieces through my surface planer to make sure they were all the same thickness.  This also knocked off the rounded edges that seem to come standard in 2x4 studs.

I then cut the wood to size on the miter saw.

Next I used clamps and my speed square to hold the pieces together...

...and simply assembled it with some self tapping deck screws.

Then I removed all my plans and reminders from my cork board and took it off the wall.  I placed it on the frame and all is looking good so far.

I clamped the cork board to the frame and drilled holes for hinges and attached them.

I only have small hinges on hand, so I used 3 to hold the door in place.  Since the cork board is so light, these hinges are more than adequate.

Next I attached a small knob to the cork board.

I then attached some magnetic clasps to the door...

...and the frame.

I noticed that the cork board frame and cork were a bit loose, so I applied wood glue along the edges of the inside door frame.  My application was a bit messy, but when it dries it won't be very noticeable. 

Before calling it a night, I dug up some plywood to use as supports...

...and some leftover MDF to use as a decorative top and bottom to the whole unit.

Then next morning I ripped the plywood into smaller pieces...

...and did the same for the MDF.

Next I cut the plywood strips to size at the miter saw.

I drilled pocket holes...

...and attached them to the back of the frame using pocket screws.

Then I attached the MDF to the top and bottom.  The MDF doesn't fully reach to each end of the frame, but it's only short by about half an inch and doesn't look terrible.

Unfortunately the screws that attached the MDF to the frame poked through to the inside of the cabinet.  This can hardly be an effective cabinet for storing safety equipment if there's pointy screws sticking out.

So I used my angle grinder to remove the screws.

And since I'm talking a bunch about safety, I put on a long-sleeve hoodie, gloves and my eye protection while using the angle grinder.  Despite it being about 120 degrees in my workshop, I rather be hot and sweaty wearing a hoodie than have burns on my arms from sparks.

I still have yet to buy the peg board, but I can mount the cabinet to the wall at this point.

And the door opens and closes nicely, plus it all looks good.

Then I put my plans and reminders back on the cork board.

At this point I wanted to see how much room I had for the peg board hooks.

I made my frame too small!!!  Aggravated, I decided to simply attach some screws and see how well some of my safety equipment fits inside.


I was fed up.  I never bothered measuring the peg board hooks, nor my safety equipment.  That's a very amateur thing for me to do.  So I left for a while until I calmed down and came to my senses.  In reality, if I made the sides any wider, the whole cabinet would protrude away from the wall so much that it might look a bit unsightly.  So instead of taking it all down, I simply cut a few more strips of the leftover plywood to make shelves.

I cut the plywood to size at the miter saw...

...and attached the pieces to the existing plywood back supports.

They're not very deep shelves, but I was able to store a good amount of misc stuff on them!

On the top I have some drill bits and my spare garage door opener.  On the wall between the top and middle shelves are 2 of my bench dogs.

The middle shelf holds more driver bits, my safety goggles and some plywood templates.  Below the middle shelf hangs some flashlights, keys and some scrapers.

On the wall between the middle and bottom shelf is a push stick.  The bottom shelves hold my other bench dogs, my box of spare razors, scissors and a box cutter.

I didn't bother with staining the frame or filling any existing holes.  I think it looks fine as is.

And of course when the door is closed, I tack my various plans and lists onto the cork board.

So it's not a safety cabinet now, just a storage cabinet - which is fine.  I love it and it helped me un-clutter other areas of my workshop - and that's a good thing.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, September 19, 2016

Display Box for Dueling Pistols (Rubberband Guns)

My girlfriend is addicted to the soundtrack for the Broadway musical Hamilton.

Every morning she plays the music and I wind up humming it throughout the day after she's gone to work.  One song that seems never to escape my head is "Ten Duel Commandments".

For anyone who is interested in hearing this song, here it is.

So for fun I thought I'd make a nice box for my dueling rubberband guns that I made a while back.

To make this box, I am going to use just scrap material once again, as I haven't much money at the moment to buy new wood.

I have a lot of unused 1/2" thick plywood pieces, so that is what I'm going to use for the sides and bottom of this box.

First I cut some pieces to the same width on the table saw.

Then I cut them to length at the miter saw.

These pieces make up the sides.

I simply glued and nailed the 4 pieces together.

Next I glued 2 larger pieces of 1/2" plywood to make up the bottom.  I decided to just place some weights onto the boards until dry.

While I waited for that to dry I dug up some 1x2 pieces of wood and used a roundover bit on the router table to give one edge a rounded corner.

Then I changed the bit to a rounded cove bit.

I set up the fence with a feather board to make sure my wood stays close to the table surface while routing.

I then routed the cove into the wood, slightly lower than the curve I previously added.

All these pieces will be the base trim for the box.  I then sanded everything to be smooth.

I used my mouse sander for most of the trim, but used sandpaper by hand for those small coves.

Once the wood was dry on the box I trimmed the bottom with my table saw...

...and used my trim router to make the edges of the bottom flush with each side.

Next came more sanding.  Now it was time to add the trim.

I measured and cut the trim at 45 degree angles.

The trim was then glued and nailed to the box.

Looking okay so far.

Next I wanted some trim for the top edge of each side.  I gathered some more scrap pine and cut it to fit above the base trim, and level with the top of each side.

I then glued and nailed these pieces to the box.

I then attached a roman ogee bit to the router table...

...and made a nice decorative edge along the top.

Next I installed a V groove bit into my router...

...and adjusted the router table fence so the bottom part of the new trim will get shaped.

It took a few passes to get it right, but it did work well.

Next it was time to sand all the new trim.

After taking a break for a while, I then went back and dug up almost all my leftover pine pieces so I can make a lid for this box.

I found 5 pieces that should work.  These 5 pieces will be glued to a 1/4" thick piece of plywood.

The plywood was cut to size on the table saw.

This piece fits perfectly on the top.

Next I added glue to those 5 pieces of pine...

...and glued and clamped them onto the plywood.

Once the top was dry, I trimmed the edges on the table saw.

It's beginning to look like a top, but all the pieces aren't level.

So I ran it through several passes in the surface planer.

Then I sanded it...

...and ran the edges through the router with the Roman Ogee bit.

And it looks pretty good on the box.

While routing, some of the pine pieces on the lid broke away from the plywood.  So I reglued and clamped.

Also, a chunk broke off while routing.  I filled the space with glue and a small craft stick.

Then I let the lid dry again.  I haven't done much to the inside yet, and it's looking a bit rough.  Especially since there are a few nails popping through the sides.

This was easily taken care of by my grinding wheel.

Ohhhhh sparks.

For the few nails that couldn't be reached with the angle grinder, I simply pushed them in with my hammer and punch.

When the glue dried on the lid I cut off the excess material with a hand saw and planed the edge to remove any dried glue.

Then I added wood filler to spots on the box that needed it... well as the lid.

When the filler dried I sanded all the flat edges with my orbital sander and hand sanded all the coves and curves.

And the box is nearing completion!

Next I wanted to add some hinges, but the curves on the back made that difficult.  So I began chiseling out a space for the hinges.

I don't chisel out wood often, so I made sure my chisel was very sharp.  This made the process easier.

Once the areas were chiseled out I attached the hinges.

Next I cleaned up the box and applied stain.

While the stain dried I found a piece of furniture foam I had in my closet.  This is what I'll use to rest the pistols on inside the box.

I measured the foam and cut it using a very sharp razor.

The foam fits well, but the edges are exposed.

But its the perfect height.

I then traced the shape of the spaces between the 2 guns on the scrap foam...

 ...and cut it out.

These pieces will help keep the guns in place.

Using some spray mount, I attached the pieces of foam to each other.

Then I found some green-velvet fabric I had.  I'll use this to cover the foam.

I sprayed my foam insert with more spray mount...

...then I covered it with the fabric.

Using the sharp razor again, I trimmed the fabric and wrapped it around the sides and bottom edges.

Not too bad!

Now it's time to work on those gaps.

I decided to simply use a leftover wooden threshold I had - which I had previously cut in half length-wise.  I trimmed the pieces on the miter saw to fit my box.

Then I glued and clamped them in place.

When the glue dried I sprayed the whole box with some polycrylic spray.

When dry I poured a bunch of glue on the inside...

...and put the foam insert in place.

And I'm done!!!

Another fun project that took me about 2 days to make.  And I spent ZERO extra dollars on it!  Everything was made with leftovers!

The next time the TEN DUEL COMMANDMENTS comes on, I'll be ready!

Thanks for reading!