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Projects

Make a king-single wooden bed

I have used a lot of beech for furniture over the years but sadly the quality of what I can now obtain has deteriorated. I now need to spend considerable time selecting the timber at the supplier’s yard. The staff are always accommodating and let me pick through the racks as I gradually load my trailer. The cost of the beech plus the pine for the bottom slats was around $450.

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Build the best smoker

Some time back I built the excellent pizza oven featured in this fine magazine and it provided weeks of building pleasure. We have had many evenings of entertainment where we cook everything in it we can think of (in the learning stages, I use the term “cooking” very loosely).
It was almost a shame to finish it and I I have pined ever since for something like it. There are just so many pizza ovens you can fit in a backyard. As keen try-hard fisherman and someone who lives for spicy food, I wanted to get into smoking fish and salamis as well as cheese, sausages and hams, with taste and preserving the product being the main goals.

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Build an outdoor fireplace

An outside fire can be larger than the usual indoor version, though that consumes more wood. But it should have visual appeal and a certain “wow!” factor. I opted to make the opening 700 mm x 700 mm, so I can put on a reasonably chunky piece of ti tree without constant refuelling but also leave a few trees standing on the property. I made the hearth about 600 mm above ground level, as most people will be standing in front of it.

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How I decided to refurbish an old drill press

I regretted losing the Dyco as it was quite clear the newly acquired, imported machine I had purchased was nowhere near the quality. I bought the Tanner because I had an idea to build a small vertical slotting machine to cut small keyways and splines inside gears for my old motorcycles. I had made up a rather ugly prototype for a slotter as a proof-of-concept test which seemed to work OK.
But a very good friend of mine had recently built such a unit using an old unwanted drill press so this was the main motivation for this purchase.

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Make your own book

As a passion, my bookmaking is certainly the creative challenge for which I feel I’ve been preparing myself for many years. I still see myself as serving an apprenticeship at my Book Art Studios as there are so many areas of this fascinating art yet to be explored but I will continue to have many more hours following my bliss whilst I’m doing it.

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The Shed 82, Jan/Feb 2019 issue on sale now

In The Shed 82, the Jan/Feb 2019 issue, its time to join the low & slow cooking revolution – to do that we need to build our own offset smoker barbeque.
In our cover story this issue we showcase three sheddies from around the country as they have their own way of making a smoker just the way they like it. Two out of steel and one out of a wine barrel, yes, a wine barrel. We have all you need to know about low & slow cooking with rubs, woods, cuts – the lot. Get building, get smoking and get stuck in.

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Bend it

This design-and-make plan will enable you to make a small pan sheet metal folder that folds mild sheet metal from 18 to 26 gauge. With it, you’ll be able to fold “U” or “Z” sections or a lip on a sheet of metal. The way we’ve constructed the metal folder will also allow you to bend metal to more than 90 degrees—try that with two pieces of angle iron mounted in the vice.

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Make a simple outrigger canoe

To build it, I concentrated on the advice of most waka ama advocates: that the canoe should be made of locally available materials, quick to assemble on the launching area and very cheap to make.
This waka cost me less than $200 by using recycled material and left-over house paint for the finish. I did not work from plans but used a cardboard model that I made as a guide. The waka takes less than two minutes to assemble after we take it off its trolley.

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Make a handy saw bench jig

I regularly need to cut a multiple number of short pieces on my saw bench for small box components, kids’ building blocks, small pieces for furniture etc. In the past I have clamped in place various contraptions to ensure each piece is the same length. It is difficult to hold small pieces to cut them accurately but this jig solves the problem. It attaches to the saw bench in seconds and probably takes longer to get out of the cupboard than to fit.

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Electronic, mini wooden Christmas trees

That original version of this project used 3 mm light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and no printed circuit board. Because of its size, it was tricky to wire and not so easy for a novice to construct. But the version of the project being followed here has been updated and adapted for easy construction.

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Forging ahead

When I came to select an old gas bottle for this project, the most likely candidate proved to be full of gas. Far too much gas to vent so having committed to making the forge I opted for the second-best option and bought a new bottle. At only $45 it wasn’t a huge outlay although I know that many of you will be shaking your heads at my frivolous wastefulness.
Buying a new bottle has one very handy up side: there is no volatile gas in the bottle. If there was then certain precautions are absolutely essential.

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Recycled rimu outdoor chair

I have almost always used recycled rimu for my chairs as it is easy to obtain and relatively cheap to buy. It seems to last for ever and once the finish has weathered a little it has that rustic look.
Buying recycled rimu from second-hand building supply dealers has the advantage that you can get it when you want it, you can pick and choose the actual sticks you buy and it comes de-nailed.

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Build a basic trailer- part two

The frame is braced by angle-iron cross members and has a sturdy, ply wooden deck. It’s best to use not less than 5-ply 12 mm minimum — in this case we have used 7-ply 17 mm. With minor variations, I have built a standard 1200 mm x 1800 mm (6ft by 4ft ) domestic trailer with a solid frame of rectangular hollow section (RHS) mild steel.

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