Thursday, December 21, 2017

How to make a wooden toy castle

I made this DIY castle out of birch plywood. I used the papier-mâché technique to give it a nice stone wall texture. I also used dry brushing to give it a more interesting paint job.

First of all I designed the template of my castle. I then printed the template out and joined all the template pieces together.

I then glued the templates on 9mm plywood, using spray adhesive. I made the circles on the template with 35 degree radius. This is perfect form my 35mm forstner bit. I first marked with an owl and then removed the material with the drill.

I then cut the rest of the pieces on the bandsaw.

The towers of my castle are mirror images of each other. So I glued two pieces of plywood with double sided tape and cut both templates together.

I then sanded the pieces lightly on my belt sander.

I glued all the pieces together with wood glue. I used my nail gun to add brad nails to keep everything in place before the glue sets.

To give the castle a more stone wall texture I used the paper mache technique. I thinned  down wood glue using water. I then cut pieces of kitchen paper. Using a bush I glued the paper on the plywood. The inner area I just coated with wood glue. When the glue dries you get a really hard paintable surface.

I panted the castle with latex paint. 

I then cut the ladder and door pieces on the bandsaw. I glued them together. For these pieces I also used bamboo sticks to act as mini dowels!

To give everything a more aged surface I used the dry brushing technique. You take a brush and dip it in paint. Then you remove the excess paint of the brush with a piece of paper of cloth. Then you apply really fast light strokes on the item you want to dry brush. This highlights the high spots and gives a really interesting texture to the project.

I finished the piece with two coats of clear, satin, water based varnish!

My castle came out epic! I hope you like it!

Thursday, December 14, 2017

How to make a DIY ballerina lamp, with LED strip

I made this wall lamp out of 9mm birch plywood. It is actually a backlight lamp with LEDs.

First of all I cut a piece of birch plywood to size. I used my circular saw with a guide rail for this job.

I then printed out a template. I Joined the pieces of the template together. I added masking tape on the plywood and then I glued the template on the tape with spray adhesive. This way there won’t be any left over glue on the wood, once I remove the template.

I then cut the template out on the bandsaw. I sanded the piece using my belt sander and my rotary tool with a sanding drum bit.

To support the LED strip, I cut several square plywood blocks on the bandsaw. I glued them on the back of the lamp. I used my nail gun to add one nail to each block, until the glue dried.

I also glued and nailed a couple of spacers. Those spacers prevent the lamp from touching the wall. This way the light comes out much nicer.

I secured the LED strip with my hot glue gun. To force the hot glue to freeze faster I provided air with my air gun.

I then soldered and connected the power supply and the on/off switch of the lamp. I also used heat shrinking tubing to a couple of exposed solders. I glued the wires on the back of the lamp with my hot glue gun again. 

I also drilled a hole to act as the hanging mechanism.

I painted the lamp pink. After the first coat was dry I lightly sanded with 220 grit sandpaper. I applied another coat of paint and then finished the piece with two coats of clear water based varnish.

My cute ballerina lamp was now ready, I hope you like it!

Thursday, December 7, 2017

How to make a maraca on the lathe

This is a percussion musical instrument. It is similar to a baby rattle. I made it out of lime tree on the lathe.

First of all I cut a piece of lime tree to size using my circular saw.

I then used my jointer to flatten one side of the board. I cut it in half on the bandsaw. I glued the two flat sides together. 

I then cut two cylindrical pieces on the bandsaw. I did that so that the hollowed egg of the maraca would be hollowed mostly on side grain. This makes the hollowing process much easier.

Using my 1/2 inch bowl gouge I turned the cylinders true. With the parting tool and the skew chisel I created the tenons that would fit the jaws of my chuck.

I shaped the outer sides of the eggs with the spindle gouge. I then hollowed the interior with the bowl gouge.

The halfs are jointed together with a mortise and tenon. After I have roughly turned the two halfs, I glued them together on the lathe. I cleaned one end of the egg with a bowl gouge.

I then used the a forstner bit on the tailstock’s chuck and drilled a hole on one end of the egg.

Using a spindle gouge, I turned the spindle for the handle. I measured the forester bit I used before with a caliper and made a tenon on the end of the spindle with the parting tool.

I filled the egg with rice and glued the egg and the handle together.

I then finished turning everything. I used a straight chisel as a scraper to smooth out as much surface as I could.

I used my steady rest and a bowl gouge to finish the top of the egg. The steady rest helps reduce vibrations and also I avoided the piece from braking off the spindle.

I then sanded everything with 100 and 220 grit.

I used water based powder dyes to color the wood. First I applied the light color with a piece of cloth. Then I added the two darker ones. With the cloth I tried to blend the colors and create a gradient effect. 

I then lightly sanded with 220 and repeated the process. I then used a wet rag to better blend the colors.

I finished the piece with shellac. Shellac is alcohol based and does not dissolve the dyes. I applied six coats of shellac with light sanding between coats.

Using the skew chisel I parted the piece of the chuck. I sanded the bottom on the belt sander and finished it with shellac.

My maraca was now ready, it was a really cool and interesting project!