Sunday, September 19, 2010

New Twist to a couple of Projects

I was asked to make a couple of trucks for a friend of my mother's.  They were going to be for her two grand boys and they were going to be the exact same.  I changed them up a little and made the accent woods different.  One was walnut and the other was a red looking wood from my grandfathers scrap pile I inherited.  They turned out really nice and but I wanted them to be a little more different.  I asked the lady I was making these for if I could try to paint their names on them.  Anyone that knows me knows that I could not write these names free hand.  I do have an air brush and I knew if I did it free hand I would have to sand a lot of mistakes out.  So I opted to do it like etching glass.  My mother is a major scrap book person and a while back she purchased a die cut stencil set.  I cut my letters from that and put them backwards on a sheet of contact paper.  Then I put the contact paper on the truck beds and cut out the letters leaving behind the sheet of contact paper. The reason I did this rather than just tracing the letters  on the contact paper was because the paper stencil leaves a lip that is easy to trace with a blade.  I then painted the names on to the beds of the trucks.  They turned out really nice.  It looks a lot better than my free hand.  Here are the pictures of the steps.

Just a note:  Push down the contact paper after cutting out the letters.  The lip that helps you cut out the letters will let the paint bleed if not pushed down.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My Band Saw

I did a mail order band saw from a company called Grizzly Tools.  It came with a high recommendation from our sample shop manager at work.  They only do mail order and they are the manufacturers of their equipment so I am not paying a middle man.  I have been looking on their website for a while and the the plan was to earn the money from selling my projects (I am about half way there).  They introduced a new series called the Polar Bear series.  The only difference was this series was all white.  They were doing and introductory offer on them.  With the promo price I was able to upgrade for free.  I couldn't let that deal go by.  I don't know what the extra 1/4 horse power gets me but I got it for free.
It came via FedEx freight and because a semi truck might have trouble on my parents street and there would be no one there to sign for it; I opted to pick it up at the terminal.  Set up was not as bad as I thought it would be.  It went together very well, even thought the directions were a little weird.  I had to know the bolt classifications and everything was in metric.
When I first turned it on nothing happened.  The motor hummed but the blade did not move.  Customer was very helpful and quickly identified the problem as the start up capacitor.  I think they had a bad patch of motors because they were really quick to state the problem.  They sent me a replacement which was smaller than the original.  Now it runs great. I just did re sawed some lumber.  I am very happy with the purchase.
Now this means I do not have to use the work band saw that is extremely dull and burns the wood .  I am also in control on how the equipment is treated.  There is a definite advantage of owning your own tools.