Yesterday, we completed a physics demonstration: The adjustable see-saw. This seesaw has holes drilled into the balancing beam, allowing students/users to experiment with the capabilities of numerous levers. You just shift its position along the beam and viola! Instantly, a foolish grin hits your face as you try to balance anew.
More pictures after the jump…
When installing finishing brads and nails, I usually chuck the nail into the bit and punch a hole through the lumber. This results in a minimal hole (the length of the nail minus the depth of my drill’s chuck jaws) which prevents most splitting.
I recently “discovered” a secret – the deeper the pilot hole for my seven-year olds (2nd grade) the more successful the hammering. Look at that kid go! One handed, 7 oz claw hammer.
He hammered those nails flush. He could feel the excellence in his small act, see the effect in the larger project, and you can sense his excitement getting to use the hammer.
I only wish had a Archimedes drill in the shop somewhere. Then I wouldn’t be in the picture.
UPDATE: You can pick up PDF plans for this project at www.woodshopcowboy.com. More plans coming soon!
A little over five weeks ago, a plumbing issue at my residence caused a rather large flood. Since then, my family and I have been staying with relatives. The workshop has been closed for personal projects until further notice.
This weekend, though, I collected enough tools to make this bed frame for my relatives as a I’ve-been-here-five-weeks-and-will-be-for-another-two gift.
The rails are 1x6s with a 1x4s used as the rails on which the bed/box spring sits against. I mounted the legs, from IKEA, using wood screws. All in all, this bed frame cost about $150 in materials versus the $170 for an IKEA boxspring & legs. Not enough savings to make it worthwhile, especially as I’m “factory-fit” challenged.
The bed frame does make a great argument for the use of power tools. I used a miter saw, air nailer & power drill to get this beast together. It took one and a half hours, start to finish (I know, I was racing the sunset). My eldest son watched me from a child-container. The power tools gave me the confidence & ability to finish the project quickly. Just wish they were a guarantee for tight joints.
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Make it safe & keep the rubberside down this week.
I missed Monday and Tuesday this week – my wife was in the hospital with a parasite. Luckily, the parasite left on his own and we’ve named him Jack. Jack is our second son, born on Sun 13 at 5:30am. A whopping 8 lbs. A beautiful boy.
But this blog is about woodshop & teaching. Looking over the 3 and a half days this week, the students accomplished many things.
First, they braved the cold – it’s 40 deg here in Houston and while it didn’t put me out much, my student’s had a difficult time with the weather. Especially because the refuse and/or cannot plan for the weather. We pulled through.
We finished these:
An in progress shot:
These benches are made of majority recycled materials – my program paid for fasteners & the acrylic paints (orange, black, yellow).
My colleague rescued these from the hard freeze on Tues -
Which are hanging structures for two monarch chrysalises. The butterflies will emerge and climb onto the triangle stand, dry off and fly away. Right now, they make incredibly pretty office decorations. One stays in the science room and I am sure will become a month-long science observation. This little guy was also rescued, and he’s ready to metamorphasize.
Heck of a time!