Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Ahh... sh*t

I had a couple of those moments in the shop last night. That moment when you realize that the stupidity that lays before you came from your own hand.

The first one I can chalk up to a learning experience. I don't know where you live, but chances are if you live eastern part of the US you've experienced prolonged, high humidity over the past couple of weeks. I know that humidity + metal tools = rust and I watch the weather forecasts. I knew the humidity was coming. I prepared the tools that are too big to move out of my garage with a fresh coating of wax.

Tonight, I moved some work pieces that I placed my table saw shortly after the waxing and found this.

Rust on my table saw
My table saw had never experienced rust before this.


Mother father! Those pieces of wood may have just as well been wet rags. If I hadn't needed to use the saw tonight, who knows when I would have found this or how bad the rust would have been when I did? Now, in the grand scheme of things this is an easy fix. A bit of WD40, a scour pad and five minutes of scrubbing and the rust was gone. But the evidence, the stains, remain. So do the emotional scars.

The second moment is pure carelessness.

I started work on fitting a seat to the one chair I have been working on. I want the back of the seat to fit between the rear legs and the plan was to notch out the corners using the band saw. I lined up the seat on the chair and marked the area I wanted to remove. A few cuts on the band saw and this was the result.

Not a bad cut. Very little to clean up.
You dope.

What I didn't take a picture of were the X's I marked in the area I cut out. I marked the waste wrong. That bares repeating, even if only to serve as a reminder to myself. I MARKED THE WASTE WRONG. I knew I wanted the corners notched and I still cut out space between them.

My wife and I sing a song to each other when either of us makes a dumb mistake. It goes "Daddy's a dope, Daddy's a dope... ohhh Daddy's a dope, Daddy's a dope" sung to the chorus of Parliament's "We want the funk." I don't get to sing the "Mommy's a dope" version as much as my wife gets to sing to me.

The real suck part of this mistake is that I might have to make a whole new seat. I may have cut too much off for the seat to be long enough to reach the front of the chair if I cut those corners off. I was too mad to find out. I grabbed another seat and started again. There will be four chairs, so I had three more seats to mess up.

That's a little better.

With faith in my cognitive abilities restored, I continued shaping the seat. I rounded the front corners and tapered the sides to meet the outside edges of the rear legs.

So close to being done

I'll have to let the seat sit for a bit to allow me to think about the proportions. Right now I think the front of the seat hangs a bit too far over the front and corners (the shadow in this pic makes that hard too see). Should it be tighter to front legs? Maybe I'll have my kids sit on it and see how fits.

Hopefully I won't forget to put the seat on the chair before having them sit.

I've got a bunch more pictures that I am saving for another post about constructing the chair. Until then, thanks for reading.

Jim