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Here's a train set that will inspire many young and perhaps even a few older imaginations. At first glance the train set may seem like a lot of work. But don't be fooled. You'll discover that the train is designed around a simplified common chassis system, where all the cars except the locomotive share identical undercarriages. Once you've set up your table saw you can easily knock off as many undercarriage parts as required by the number of cars you plan to build.
A fairly easy lathe project will make use of your scrap wood, this weather station is made from pine and maple, but almost any other wood will do. A lathing project that takes your scrap wood and turns it into an attractive decoration piece for any room.
If you like scroll saw work and enjoy giving gifts, this Nativity Scene - often called a crche - is one project that's sure to satisfy. All the pieces pack neatly into the stable, making the scene easy to store once the holiday season has passed.
You won't need your chisels and dovetail saws for this picnic table, but it's sure to be a big hit with the family. And given prices we've seen for similar picnic tables, you may start a burgeoning business building these backyard classics for friends and neighbors.
This shelf makes a great gift, and only requires minimal stock. The scroll brackets look complex, but they are easily cut, either by hand with a coping saw or with a scroll saw. All three scroll brackets are identical, and they're simple to duplicate using the full-size pattern that's provided.
Incredibly, the bench shown is made from just two 4x8 sheets of 1/2-inch thick MDF. The two sheets are cut to yield parts for three torsion boxes - or T-boxes for short. One T-box is the workbench top and the remaining two T-boxes serve as pedestals. If you've never tried T-box construction before, it's really quite easy. To help you, we've detailed the process in a series of step-by-step illustrations. Our $30 materials estimate covers only the sheet stock and the hardware, and does not include the vise.
Generations of craftsmen have used these handy helpers to hold the other end of the board. They're especially useful for hand planing or jointing boards too long for a vise to support. Once you make this shop project, you'll wonder how you got along without it.
If you're like most woodworkers, you look longingly at the through-dovetail jigs in woodworking catalogs, but blanch at the price tag - usually upwards of $300. This low-cost, high quality through-dovetail jig can be clamped securely to just about any work surface and has built-in height adjustability to accept boards of any length.
This handy Router Storage Cabinet solves the problem of not only storing routers, but also of organizing all your bits and accessories. The interior dimensions will store both a full-size plunge router and a standard-size router. Bits and accessories fit in the two drawers. The door back is a good place to hang the edge guide. The storage cabinet can either sit on a flat surface or be wall-mounted.
Here's a nifty way to organize and protect your shop handsaws. Ours is designed to hold eight saws but, by changing the width of the project, you can make it to accept almost any number. There's no fancy hardware holding each saw - just set the handle on the dowel, place the blade in the slot, and let it lean back.
The first criterion for this project was "They have to surpass the kind you can buy ready-made at the home-supply center." To do that, we specified better stock, requested a cleaner, trimmer look, designed a more positive means of opening the louvers than the center-mounted, staple-connected adjusting rod, and demanded construction procedures that didn't require unusual tools or complex jigs and fixtures. We improve on the basic stapled design and simplify the building process.
These sanding blocks are a low-cost alternative to the store-bought variety. The step-by-step technique shown yields three separate blocks - one each for coarse, medium and fine sandpaper. The blocks are designed to use either the cloth-backed paper from 3 inch wide belt sanders or 3 inch wide roll sandpaper, which is more flexible and longer lasting than standard sandpaper.
This router table serves several purposes. Yes, it's a good all-around basic router table, but in making this table, you coincidentally learn most of the basics employed in case/face-frame/panel door construction. Finally, even if you now have one of the inexpensive commercial bench-top router tables, making this table will give you a serious shop tool, capable of turning out work every bit as fine as in professional shops.
We've often been told that the best shop ideas are also the easiest to build, and this simple cut off table for the band saw surely fits that description. The table was originally built to cut turnings to length, but it also serves a host of other purposes, from cutting just about anything to length, to establishing tenon shoulders or making multiples.