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Kinnor: Day 2

Posted by Yopparai on Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I spent a second evening with the kinnor project and found out that Santa isn't the only one with an elf problem.

 Click to Enlarge The first task of the day was to finish making the template for the sides of my kinnor.  I roughed it out on the band saw and then sanded it down to the line on the belt sander and a sanding drum on my drill press. I drilled holes to mark the corners of the mortises and finished it off with a hole for hanging and a label for easy identification later.
 Click to Enlarge I will be using oak for the skeleton of this instrument. Why oak? Because it was there. This was a board that I had purchased several years ago for a lamp project that just never took off. I traced the template onto the board and then rough cut it on the band saw. Then I attached the template to the piece with double sided tape and moved to the router to clean it up. Lessons learned? I need a router table. Since I don't have one, I set my router on the workbench, bit end up. I clamped one handle in my vice and then used a bar clamp to secure the other handle to the bench top. After convincing myself that everything was secure I went to work. The good news is that it was in fact well secured and another power tool was denied the sweet delicacy of my tender flesh. However, the router base makes for a very small and inadequate table. It gave me some trouble on the skinny end where it was difficult to keep the work piece square whilst also keeping my fingers out of harms way. 
 Click to Enlarge I have tried for a while to get my kids interested in music and playing instruments. Occasionally one of them will seem to take an interest, but then it quickly fades. But let me go out to the garage and try to spend some quality time with the tools and I can't get rid of them!  Everyone wanted to get into the act. Just as I had my sander set up and switched it on, one of them would walk up waving a piece of wood they had excavated from the cutoff bins while attempting to shout over the sound of the sander to ask me if I was planning on using it for anything. I would switch off the sander so I could hear them and fight back the urge to say "Well, I saved it, didn't I? SOMEDAY I might REALLY need that odd shaped gnawed up piece of plywood..." I have issues when it comes to tossing out cutoffs. So instead I decided to work on letting go and for the most part allowed them to keep the treasure which they had pilfered from my hoard. After inquiring as to the nature of their plans for the chunk of wood, I offered my suggestions and encouraged them to sketch out their plan on the wood before starting to hack on it. Then I would turn the sander back on and count to 5, waiting for the next shouts of "Father, FATHER DO YOU NEED THIS...."
 Click to Enlarge Oh man! Just look at that lovely bit of laminated project board! That would have been just perfect for that bagpipe... *sigh* Yep, I have issues. The girlie decided that she wanted a big wooden number "1"  and you can see her cut lines there in the photo. I had encouraged her to go with simple, straight lines and in true Yopp form, she found a scrap of rose wood long enough to function as a straight edge. I helped start the cuts and she did the rest using the big handsaw - not that little keyhole saw pictured on the bench there.
 Click to Enlarge YIKES! That piece is even bigger and nicer than the one the girlie had! My middle child, inspired by the efforts of his older brother, is working on a wooden sword. You can see that his design was a little on the thin side and I suggested he widen it out a bit. His sister had already laid claim on the big saw, so he has my coping saw, the least aggressive and most difficult saw in the shop. I moved him out to the picnic table and provided him a clamp to help hold the board. In the end, I think the cross pieces of his hand guard were still too thin and ended up breaking off. Now its a machete.
 Click to Enlarge Here is my eldest putting the finishing touches on a sword that he cut from 3/4 plywood using my coping saw. I was actually impressed because that saw always gives me fits. I can never keep it perpendicular to the board on all axis at the same time. The side I can see follows the cut lines just fine, but the blade wanders all over the place on the back. He did a pretty good job. After he got it in roughly the shape of a sword, I had him draw in the blade and use the belt sander to finish forming it. Once he was happy with it, I rounded off the edges to make it more hand and sibling friendly.
  Click to Enlarge While we are here, I will give you the shop tour. Here's my Delta drill press. The cabinet on the wall behind it has screws, nails drill bits, and other miscellaneous goodies. The cabinet in the foreground is home to my router, palm sander, books, plans, user's manuals and assorted brik-a-brak.
Click to Enlarge My bench. 2' X 8', a double thickness of 3/4 plywood laminated together with a hard board work surface. It is hinged and the legs can swing up flat against the wall to let the top fold down, however, it is rarely cleared off enough for me to use this feature. Home to the messy Wall o'Stuff, the vice, and the belt/disk sander. My wee compressor and my shopvac are huddled underneath.
 Click to Enlarge And finally my band saw and sorry table saw. The table saw was my first big tool purchase and I chickened out of buying a really good one. ALWAYS BUY THE BEST TOOLS YOU CAN AFFORD! Between the saws is my collection of scrap wood. I don't consider my self a pack rat, but I find it nearly impossible to throw away even the smallest, most useless bits of wood. That pile in front of the wood isn't trash! Its wine boxes for future banjos, parts of the as yet unfinished Weber Kettle Bass, and other vitally important parts.
 Click to Enlarge Before calling it a night, and after everyone had gone to bed, I made the other side of the kinnor. It is definitely starting to look lyre-like. Soon I will have to cut the mortises for the cross bits. I don't really like mortising, it puts the 'work' in woodworking. I probably need to practice it more. Hmm.. Maybe I could just used the biscuit joiner... hmmmmm.

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