Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Front End Loader

This is the next piece of equipment that is in the Wood Magazine construction series.  I think that I am getting better at these.  They are not as hard as they use to be but they still provide a challenge.  It is all made out of walnut and maple.  Wood magazine is getting more into the different thickness board.  It is getting more tedious gluing up several pieces for a small piece.  There tends to be a lot of waste so that the part can be handled safely.  They still look great and love the design.

 The hardest part of the entire project was sticking this nut on a threaded rod.  I should have welded together when I had the chance.  It is going to come off the first time it is played with.
The other big issue I had with this piece is the wheels.  I just ordered a bunch of 2" wheels because I was running out and these are 2 3/4".  This is not a standard size I purchase so I had to go to Rockler to pick up these wheels.  I guess it was better than paying huge shipping rates for eight wheels but they were still expensive.
I did make a couple of modifications to the plans.  I have a problem with the skip loader breaking where the arms meet the shovel.  This is because the holes, thin board and the grain make this joint very weak.  This is joint is used a lot and has a lot of stress put on it. So I put a cross member and drilled through the length of the cross member for the threaded rod.  This took out the weak grain and the thin board issue.  I also did it on the back side of the arm for the same reason.  I would probably put in an axle peg instead of the threaded rod in area that was just to tight to screw on the acorn nut.
Looking at the pictures I realized that I forgot to put on the roof to the cab.  Something to do this weekend.
Just as a tidbit of worthless information.  This construction set does not go outside; I have worked too hard on it and it is too nice.  I felt bad because even though the set gets played with, carpet and wood flooring just is not the same as dirt.  About a month ago I was planing a bunch of cherry and accumulated a pretty big pile of shavings.  The kids scooped and plowed that pile throughout the garage and had a blast.  I now have a decent size container of shavings so that they can continue to play in when I dump it out.  A couple words of caution: It will get into the house and the shop will be a mess.  It is well worth the trouble.

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