Thursday, May 12, 2016

New Scroll Saw Stand

A couple of weeks ago I had my first taste at the craft fair market.  It really was not a craft fair, we were at a lumber yard to promote the woodworking club.  We were allowed to display some of the things we have made and if people wanted to they could purchase our things.  I did not sell anything but that was not expected.  While I was there I used the club saw and stand.  The stand was simply made and low to the ground so that people could see what was being cut.  It was actually pretty comfortable to work on. 

I had brought a large table which was heavy and awkward.  I figured if I was going to do more of these craft shows and demonstrations, I should probably prepare for them a little better.  I liked the idea of the simpleness of the club's stand but it was too big for me to haul around and store. I got to work and started to design.  My constraint was I wanted to be able to haul everything around in a compact car (Corolla).  That is not very much space.  My largest dimension was going to be the base in which the saw was going to be bolted to so that is what I started with.  Then I moved to a folding table designed that would fit inside the top portion.  The handle came in at this stage of the design.  This made it an "easy" carrying table.  I was going to have square wings then I laid out the cut pattern and realized this was going to be just under a full sheet of 3/4" which would weigh about 70 lbs.  This was a previously unknown design constraint that I had.  So the next objective was to take weight out.

That is where all the holes come from.  I took out a lot of the excess that was not needed in the center sections.  Reduced the wings so that they were not acting as a table to put stuff on.  After the weight had been addressed, I had yet to figure out how to attach the top box to the table section.  I wanted to make sure it was secure and not move during operation.  The first ideas were to add a block to the front and screw it in or to screw it in underneath the wings.  I wanted to make it easy to disassemble and getting under the table to screw it in did not make much sense.  I really did not want to add a block to the front because I wanted my logo and contact information there.  I compromised on moving the attachment blocks to the sides and adding threaded inserts.  I did the same for attaching the saw to the top. 

In the end it collapses down in to a box that is 12" wide 19" tall and 30" long.  After being concerned about the weight, I never weighed it.  I can pick it up without much strain.  It is made from one sheet of 3/4" plywood, four 12" piano hinges, eleven threaded inserts and lots of wood screws.

I don't need to defend my use of tools but I am going to anyway.  This thing is screwed together.  It is shop furniture designed to serve a single purpose.  I am not ashamed to screw things together.  I am not trying to prove my woodworking skills, I am proving my design skills and this is an awesome design. 

I did use a CNC to cut out all the parts.  Could I have done it by hand? Yes, but I did not want to.  What took me 2 hours to cut blanks, program and run these parts would have taken me 6-8 hours in the shop in set up and marking.  I wanted to do more things with those 4 hours.  With that being said, it would have looked better if I had done it by hand.  When cutting out the holes on the CNC, I left about 1/16" of material so the cutout doesn't fall out and damage the machine.  I could then cut the thin material and flush it up with a hand router.  The force and speed of the bit pushed the back material and separated the veneer from the ply.  It cleaned up all right with the round over but some of the damage was a little extensive.
I have tried it out a couple of times.  My kids need a few more inches for them to comfortably use it standing up.  I need a more comfortable chair than a foot stool.  I really like it and it is comfortable to work on.  I am not sure what I am going to do with the plans.  I am not going to do an excessive detailed procedure.  I might just offer them up for free.  It is shop furniture. 
Next is the table saw cart.

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