Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Covid 19 week 6.1 - More Console Console

I only got an hour or so in the workshop yesterday but I figured I'd give an update on what I got done.

I started my evening by cutting the top rails. I'd been careful when cutting the bottom shelf and the divider out of the 3/4 inch cherry plywood to leave an off cut that could be used for this. I cut it roughly to the right length then carefully trimmed it with light cuts until it fit tightly between the sides. Then I ripped it down into two 3 inch wide pieces.

I then cut notches in the top of the middle panel for the top rails to go between. Here is where I made my first mistake on this project. Every project - at least pretty much everyone of my projects - has at least one mistake in it. Some are horrible and require remaking one or more parts, some just require small adjustments to the plans.

This mistake was more of the latter kind. When I cut the notch in the front I cut it back 3 inches for the plywood rail and then another 3/4 inches for the hardwood trim. The problem with this is that the middle divider is also getting the same trim so I didn't need to account for it. No worries, I'd just have a weird gap up at the top of my divider that no one will ever see.

If you look closely you can see that the notch in the front - the right side of the picture - is just a little wider than the one on the left. Also, I chose this side so you can see the shelf pin holes. Looking at the photo it looks like I missed a hole. <sigh> I'll try to remember to fix that tomorrow.

I then went looking for a piece of plywood I could use for the back. I keep a stock of 1/4" luan so I was pretty sure I'd find something. But, lo and behold I found a piece of 1/4" cherry plywood leftover from the same project the 3/4" plywood came from. If I didn't care that the grain was running horizontally it would be plenty big enough. If I wanted to run the grain vertically it was going to be just a little too narrow.

Yes, there is a very dusty chair in my workshop. It is a friend's chair and it was falling apart and they asked me if I could fix it. It's in my queue. I don't want to take it apart so I am going to try drilling holes into the joints and injecting epoxy. But that is a project for another day.

I just couldn't do it...  I could make the case narrower by taking a little off the bottom shelf. Taking from the drawer side would ruin it since the drawers have to be wide enough to hold dvd and bluray cases. So I very carefully - double checking my cut - took a 1/4 inch off the shelf side. I then carefully refit the top rails.

I decided it was time to cut the rabbet in the back of the side panels to accept the plywood back so I could get a better idea of how it would all fit. I set up my router table with a rabbeting bit to take off about 1/4" x 3/8". On the left panel I carefully plunged the side into the bit. For the right hand side I just stopped cutting when I heard that the bit had made it to the dado for the bottom shelf.

Time for more dry fitting except this time I could see how the back fit. This was probably the fifth or sixth time I'd put the case together to see how things were fitting.

I decided the back was still not a good fit so I carefully - double checking everything - took another 1/4 inch off the bottom shelf. Voila, perfect fit!

I decided the next best step was to drill the pocket holes in the top rails so I pulled out my Kreig pocket hole jig and drilled a pair of holes in each rail. It was as I was finishing the second set of holes in the second rail that I realized I hadn't trimmed the second 1/4 inch of the rails. I could trim it off now but then the pocket holes would be too close to the edge.


After some sitting and pondering I looked through my scrap plywood pile and found a nice piece of Baltic birch 3/4 inch plywood that was just long enough and just wide enough to work. On the plus side I cut the front rail to 3-3/4 inch so it wouldn't leave a gap behind it. I did not drill the pocket holes in the new rails.

You can see in this next picture how the cherry rails are just a wee bit - 1/4 inch - too long.

Some time during my evening in the workshop I decided I wasn't happy with how the bottom shelf and the middle divider were leaving for the back. I trimmed them down by about 1/8 inch. Very carefully, double checking that I was taking the correct side of the middle divider.

A summary of the evening would include many dry-fittings, cutting the top rails (twice), trimming the bottom shelf so the plywood I chose for the back would fit width-wise, and trimmed the bottom shelf and middle divider depth so the back would not protrude. Mostly fitting rather than cutting and construction; however, making sure everything is going to fit is an important step in the process. It is much easier to fix things when there isn't glue drying in all the joints.

I grabbed a couple of extra pictures while I was in the shop. Here's a picture of the story stick I used to drill the shelf pin holes.

Here's a picture of the boards I used for routing the dados in the sides that are now assisting with fitting and dry assembly.

That's it for tonight.

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Covid 19 week 6 - Restarting the Gaming Console Console

I figured I've procrastinated enough on the gaming console console. After all, since starting it I've made plaques for mounting faux weapons on my walls, I've made a paper towel dispenser, and I got my workshop pretty well tidied up. I even gave myself the excuse that since there is a pandemic that even though I've never seriously hurt myself in the workshop now would be a really bad time to have to go to the hospital. I also made a much better drawing and parts list.

Yeah, I know...  all the "real" makers on YouTube and what-not use Google Sketchup. I haven't bothered to learn it yet and I like being able to doodle on a sketch pad and not need a computer. It works for me.

I think part of why I've been putting off finishing this project is that the next step is to cut some stopped dados in the sides accepting the bottom. I've done this operation before a handful of times but not enough to be casually comfortable with it. One of the things I've learned is that staring at something has almost never gotten it done. At some point you've just got to move forward and do the best you can. After all, it's just a day or two's worth of work and maybe fifty dollars worth of wood.

So yesterday I started moving forward again.

Yesterday - Saturday - I dug through my plywood stash to find something that was appropriate. I keep a variety of beech, maple, Baltic birch, and whitewood plywood in my stores. They are a staple of much of my workshop projects and quick projects like the storage unit I built for my wife's painting supplies. However, in digging though my stash I found a nice sheet of cherry plywood. Nice in that it was surprisingly flat and didn't have dinged edges or faces.

It's not nice because it is cherry and it's been browning for at least the last fifteen years. I bought a larger sheet to make a counter top wine rack for my parents as a surprise but before I could surprise them with it they bought one. I gave it to a friend and it is now in New Jersey. In any case this piece of plywood has been kicking around the workshop for over decade and hasn't been used because it is "too good" for most of my projects. It won't be the same color as the Sapele that I am using in the Gaming Console Console but I'm hoping the darker color blends better than a more blonde wood like maple or beech.

I put the end panels for the case together a few weeks ago.

I'd resawed and glued up the inner panels. I sanded them to 180 grit then pre-finished them before putting them inside the rails and stiles. I did a decent job on the joints on sides so I was able to get away with just a little sanding with 80, 120, 180 grit sandpaper on my random orbit sander. And then they sat for weeks getting moved from one side of my shop to the other while I worked on other little interstitial projects.

The first step today was to re-measure everything. It's been a few weeks and it is possible that I diverged from my plans and the construction doesn't match. Fortunately everything was right on the money.

The second step was to look over the sides and select which faces would be on the inside and which would be on the outside. My joints on the side panels came out pretty good but some were better than others. I put the nicest face on the outside of the right side and the second nicest face on the outside of the left side.

One of the things I did while futzing around for a few weeks was build a story stick for the case. It wasn't necessarily necessary but I also used it to create a shelf pin jig. The inside of the left side gets shelf pins as does the middle divider. At this point I didn't have the middle divider cut yet but the left side was ready for shelf pins so I did those first.

The shelf pin jig registers off the top as well as the font and back for the corresponding set of holes. With the jig already built I just needed to line it up, clamped it down and drilled each of the shelf pin holes. I used a piece of blue painter tape on the drill bit to make sure I didn't drill all the way through the side.

To cut the dados for the bottom panel I used a router with a 1/2" pattern bit. I don't have pictures of my setup but I used a pretty common technique. The pattern bit runs between two parallel boards that are clamped to the work piece the distance between them being the thickness of the plywood. Then with a router and a pattern bit you can just clean out the waste. To make lining up patterns I cut both boards to 4 1/2" which is the distance from the floor to the bottom of the dado. This allowed me to reference one side off the bottom of the feet, then use a spacer block to locate the second board.

On the first side I just eyeballed where the stopped dado needed to go to but this made me very nervous. On the second side I figured out where the router would need to stop and screwed another piece of wood across my pattern boards to make sure I didn't over cut the dado.

The dado in both sides came out very nice. The above picture is actually a close up of the divider panel in the bottom but the sides came out similarly well. The dado in the shelf is a through dado but the sides have a stopped dado. Since I cut them with a router I had to square up the ends with a chisel. I was prepared for some difficult chopping but I was able to do the cleanup with just a little muscle and putting my weight on the chisel. I've just been working with so much oak lately that I've forgotten what it is like to work with a wood that is more friendly to hand tools.

When it came time to dry fit the bottom in the sides I realized there was another side benefit to cutting my routing guides to match the height of the dado from the floor. It allowed me to use them as braces to support the bottom shelf.

This is pretty much where I left it for the afternoon. The bottom fits in both sides. The middle panel fits in its dado in the bottom and all my shelf pin holes have been drilled and line up. I would have liked to have gotten a little more progress made today but I got the really scary stuff done.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Covid 19 week 5.1 - Futzing in the shop

It's Sunday... I spent most of yesterday foraging for supplies, dropping off a N95 dust mask at my friend's house, cleaning, and cooking. Yes, I gave a friend an N95 mask rather than giving it to the local hospital. First, it was already used and my local hospital only wants new-in-box masks. Second, while you are saying "ewww,  used mask", it had already been used by that friend so it already had his cooties in it.

I have to admit that foraging for supplies included picking up chocolate; however, in my defense this particular chocolate is pretty good. Also, they were taking phone orders and would fling it out their door as you drove past at a high rate of speed. I'm kidding of course. My wife walked up to the door, gave her name and the bag of chocolate was handed through.

Today is Sunday and I'd hoped to have all kinds of energy for going into the workshop. I didn't find the wellspring of energy I was hoping for; however, I did have enough energy to go futz around the shop.

I believe I lamented some weeks ago about having too many projects in flight at a single time. That's always a bad thing for me because while I have a good sized shop I've also got enough tools that when I am working on multiple projects they tend to all get pulled out and left around the shop. Once that happens it gets progressively difficult to keep the dust swept and becomes exponentially harder to get things done.

Today I put hand tools back in their spot on the peg board and in the cabinets, I put the large power tools back in their parking spot, and put the hand power tools back in their cases and then the tool cases into their storage drawer.

While cleaning up my box of hardwood scraps - which mostly consists of picking up the pieces that I'd flung in that direction but missed - I found a large enough piece of white oak scrap that I could make a handle for the top of the paper towel dispenser. Since in my cleaning I'd just come across my handle template I traced out a few, cut them on the band saw then cleaned them up on my oscillating spindle sander and stationary belt sander. The white oak was a leftover from cutting out the weapon mounts and was probably at least a full inch thick. This was much thicker than I wanted the handle so I ran the handles through my table saw. I didn't really measure but they are probably about 3/4" thick now.

To knock down the sharp edges on the handles I briefly thought about throwing a round-over bit in the router table but then decided this was a low use handle and I didn't care enough to take that much effort. In the end I just free-handed the sanding using the oscillating spindle sander and belt sander to get the corners slightly rounded. I left the handle in the shop and didn't attach it to the paper towel dispenser so if I change my mind later I can come back and round over the handle. The weather here in upstate New York has been horrible and all my projects are still sitting in the garage waiting for finishing. The forecast is more weeks of horrible weather so I have time to think about it.

The other thing I did while futzing around the shop was replace the dust collector connection on my router table. The one I had was 3d printed by a friend but he had used his standard infill that was somewhat less than 100% to save filament. Unfortunately that made the piece fragile and when I abused it it shattered. Fortunately he'd printed me two: a prototype and the real one. I removed the real one, gave it to my wife who in the past has been paid to glue things together and asked her to fix it for me. I put the prototype on the router table so at least I have dust collection again.

And that was about it for today. Spent a few quality hours in the shop, got it ready for real work again and made a handle for my paper towel dispenser.

Covid 19 week 5 - No, they aren't single cup brassieres

I didn't get into the shop this week. Here in New York State our governor Andrew Cuomo issued an Executive Order requiring anyone in a public place where they cannot maintain a 6 ft distance from others to wear a face covering that covers your nose and mouth. I am skeptical as to the usefulness of a cloth covering for personal protection; however, I can believe that something that will cover my coughs or sneezes would help protect other people in case I am an asymptomatic carrier. So instead of time in my shop I spent time in my sewing room.

I'd been doing research over the last few weeks looking for sewing patterns. Three weeks ago I fund one I liked that was a surgical face mask pattern - i.e. it had pleats - however I couldn't find it again. I did however find this pattern at Craft Passion that looked like it would work and perhaps even be easier to make.

I decided to teach myself how to sew this week and making face masks seemed like a reasonable place to start.

My wife helped me dig up some leftover fabric and showed me her sewing kit then left me to set up the sewing machine. Not having instructions I ran thread everywhere it looked like it should go. Oddly enough it didn't work. I ended up with about a mile of thread jamming up the bobbin - the thingy under the needle holding the bottom thread. Seeing me take a screwdriver to her 50 year old Kenmore sewing machine my wife took pity on me and showed me how to properly run the thread.

Then I was off the the races. I'd watched a number of videos to see how to sew these masks and the one by Amanda Todaro was the most helpful to me. I cut out the paper pattern, used it to trace out the requisite pieces of cloth. I ran then through the machine and voila! I had a prototype mask. I don't have elastic but I do have yards and yards of paracord so I thought I'd use that for ties. I used a dowel to feed two lengths of paracord through the loops in the ends left for that purpose.

It worked bu 1/4" paracord really wasn't very comfortable to wear. The other thing I didn't like was the fabric was pretty but I felt it was too thin.

This weekend my wife asked me to make masks for my in laws. I switched in some thicker cloth for the inner liner. It isn't as pretty as the outer fabric but it is a bit heavier so it will hopefully do a better job of filtering droplets.

The cords are the same material as the inner liner just folded over four times (three times?) with a stitch run down the approximate middle. Much more comfortable than the paracord.

I want to try  incorporating a nose wire in my next set. These did okay but I was noticing that when I exhaled I had a breeze going into my eyes that I couldn't get rid of by adjusting the mask. Except when I pinched it to my nose the breeze went away. I have some 16-3 romex that I can strip down for some 6" lengths of wire.

I'm very happy with my face coverings...  Are they good? Most certainly not on the scale of anyone who does any quantity of sewing. Are they done and functional? Yes. Did they survive their first run through the washing machine? Yes.

One of the cool things about sewing is the similarities to wood working. No, there aren't mortise and tenon joints in sewing. You don't have to worry about wood stretching as your are gluing it together. However, The need for precision cutting and fastening is there. Knowing how to make a good joint between two pieces is important too. The need for hand eye coordination is much the same even if the actual motions are different.

If you're reading this and want a mask, let me know. I'll make you one.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Covid 19 week 4 - Finished Paper Towel Dispenser

The paper towel dispenser is done. It still needs finish but with my wife and I working from home we're using the finishing room as an office (technically, it's always been our office, I just do my finishing in there because we don't allow the cats in there. Because my finishing room isn't available I'm going to do the finishing in the garage. However, temperatures here this last week and predicted for the next ten days are dropping into the 30's overnight and are only reaching the 50's (Fahrenheit) during the day. And rain...  oh, the rain.

Last week I'd built my box joint jig and made a couple of 1/4" thick quarter sawn white oak panels. This week I wanted to finish building the box.

I started by making a test joint in some 1/4" plywood. My previous experience with setting up box joints is they are very fiddly and require a lot of set up. In this case, to my surprise my first joint just worked. I thought about cutting more test joints but since the first one worked and the entire box is just a learning experiment I figured I should just dive in.

I started on the front right corner of the dispenser. Unfortunately I made two errors. The first error was not making sure I had enough room to cut the entire joint. I got most of the way through the first joint when my router table fence which I'd swung to the side got in the way of the front panel. Simple enough I thought. I'll just move the fence. And here is where I made my second mistake.

Since the panel was doing a pretty good job of staying in place I let go of it. The panel then promptly fell into the still running router bit. I didn't try to grab it. I learned that lesson years ago. However, the router bit did a great job of boring a hole into the panel. Needless to say I was disappointed. Fortunately the hole was near the end of the panel so I decided to just make the dispenser a little shorter.

After I finished the first half that corner I moved onto the side panel for the same corner. There was much less drama with the side panel. Test fitting the joint it came together a little snug but otherwise perfect.

At this point I was getting a little bored. I decided to pair up the sides and cut two halves at the same time. There's some risk from the extra complexity of managing two boards at the same time but on the other hand it cuts the time in half as you have half the number of cuts. This seemed to go okay but made me nervous since it was more challenging to keep the boards aligned properly. I cut the rest of the boards one at a time. Maybe I'll move onto the more advanced techniques once I get a little more practice.

Anyway, I worked my way around the box doing the rest of the joints. Unfortunately after the first corner my joints kept getting worse. I played around with how I was putting pressure on the jig and the boards in the jig. Frankly I'm not sure if it was that or that I was using oak which would occasionally splinter leaving me an odd sized finger in the joint. Since the spacing of all the joints down the line depend on the size of the previous finger one poorly cut finger messes everything up.

I think I'll come back and try again with a more forgiving wood like poplar or cherry.

Anyway, I used a chisel to trim fingers to get everything to fit. It doesn't look good but it worked. I could use wood filler of some sort if I cared but this is a workshop project. Also, I like keeping my early bad attempts around because when I end up mastering something I can see how far I've come. I'm not embarrassed by not being good at everything on the first try. It's part of living, learning, and growing.

I had an idea of how I wanted the opening in the bottom of the box to work so I traced it out on a piece of 1/4" plywood and cut it out with a jigsaw. I liked the look and it seemed to work for dispensing the towels so I used the better looking half to trace out the shape on a couple pieces of scrap (one being the off cut from my mistake on the front panel). After gluing up the box I just glued these directly to the bottom with no joinery.

I'd intentionally cut the fingers a little long so they were proud of the sides. I used  my stationary belt sander to bring them flush, then used my random orbit sander to remove the scratch marks left by the belt sander.

Looking at my glued up box with one short side I decided that instead of cutting the other sides down to the same height as the front I could instead cut the sides at an angle and have a slopped top. My thought was that maybe it would also help keep it from accumulating dust in the shop. I used a straight edge to mark the cut then eyeballed the angle on my table saw. It took two passed (front and back) to cut all the way through but it came out fine.

I looked for a single piece of scrap wood that I could make the top out of but all my scraps were either too thin or were too small in one of the other dimensions. Instead I took some of my 1/4" scrap and laminated them together with the top piece being larger than the box and the inner being a tight press fit. The lid has no mechanical fasteners, it gets held in place with gravity.

Along the process of construction I'd briefly thought about using a french cleat to hold it to the wall but I wanted this to be a quick build. I haven't mounted it to a wall yet; however, I am most likely just going to drive a couple screws through the back. Now that the back is taller than the front I wont even have to angle the screw holes.

It's too cold here in upstate New York to do finishing outdoors and since my family is sheltering in the home I'm deferring all my finishing for a few weeks. I've got a backlog of quarter sawn white oak projects. They're all probably going to get Watco Dark Walnut Danish Oil and a few coats of wipe on polyurethane. I'll post pictures when they are all done.

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Covid 19 Week 3.1 - Box Joint Jig

I worked on two projects today. The first thing I did today was decide how I wanted to "lock" the weapons onto the mounts. I came up with a simple restraining arm that will screw into the end of one of the pegs and will be able to be swung across the front to keep the weapon from falling off the pegs. I cut the restraining arms, sanded and fit them today. I didn't get pictures so I'll make sure to get those into the final pictures when the project is done. Now I just need to wait for a few days where the weather will permit me to apply some danish oil and polyurethane.

My big project for today was building a new box joint jig that I'll use for building my paper towel dispenser. I mentioned in a previous post that during the early days of the covid crisis people were buying every paper product and hoarding it. I happened to be out of or low on pretty much every paper product you can think of so when I found some tri-fold towels at BJsI bought some. Now that the stores are restocked we can get most things so I'm going to use the tri-fold towels in my shop. They'll probably actually be better than "normal" paper towel rolls as far as convenience goes.

The box joint jig starts with a base that keys into the miter slot and is locked into place with a couple of clamps. I'm using some cheap C-clamps that I probably bought from Big Lots. I just thought I'd use them because they were low profile and I haven't really ever used them much yet. I used my router table to cut two slots the length of the base that will accept runners from the movable part of the jig.

The larger of the two holes is for the router bit. The smaller of the two holes is for access to the router lift mechanism so I can adjust the height of the cut without removing the jig. I drew the line across the jig to show when the sliding part has cross the middle of the bit so I know when I've completed my cut.

The sliding part of the jig is made up of a 1/4" plywood base that slides on two runners captured in the slots in the jig base. The fence is two pieces of 1/2" plywood. The front fence is held to the back fence with a couple of t-bolts and t-slots. The sliding fence will allow me to make micro-adjustments to fine tune the fit of the joints.

I finished up my workshop hours to glue the key in place so  I didn't actually try it out yet. I'll try to get some better pictures of the jig in use when I cut the joints on the towel dispenser.

Speaking of the towel dispenser, I'd resawn and glued up some quarter-sawn white oak panels earlier this week. While I was waiting for the glue to dry on the jig I worked on cleaning up the panels. I briefly thought about sending them through the planer to get them level; however, I'd done a pretty good job getting the boards lined up when I clamped them. I was able to scrape the glue then use my random orbit sander with 60 grit paper to get them flat quickly, then 80, 120, 180, and finally 220 grit to smooth them out.

That was today's progress. Hopefully I'll be able to get into the basement tomorrow and make more progress.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Covid 19 - week #3 of Extreme Social Distancing and Too many projects

So, it isn't actually week #3 of Covid 19 but it's my third week of physical distancing. As I think I said last week I am one of the fortunate few who can work from home so my days aren't much different from pre-Covid days. I get up, work for 8 or 9 hours, walk the dog for an hour or so, make dinner then if I have any energy left go do some woodworking.

This brings me to "too many woodworking projects. I've actually got at least three projects in progress right now. I've got my super secret winter project that is a bit late - more on that later, I'm making half a dozen plaques to hang medieval weapons on a wall - more on that later. I'm also building a paper towel dispenser. More on that right now.

Like many places in this country during that first week of Covid scare there were no paper products to be found anywhere. There's still very little toilet paper. I don't really understand people. Anyway, we were out of paper towels and the only thing left at the warehouse store we were shopping at were trifold towels, so we bought a box of them. Since then we've gotten a couple rolls of paper towels so I want to build a tri-fold paper towel dispenser for my workshop.

I decided to make it out of quarter sawn white oak because I have a lot of it left over from building my dresser. Feels strange using a relatively expensive wood for knock-together projects; however, I disliked working with it enough trying to make something all match I don't think I'm going to be building another piece of furniture out of it any time soon. Anyhoo...  It's basically going to be a box jointed box with a slot on the bottom. I'll probably put a hinged lid on top to keep sawdust out of it.

I've built at least one or two box joint jigs for my table saw but I decided that since I have a nice new router table I'd build a box joint jig for that instead. I don't have any pictures of any of this project yet because all I have is a brick of paper towels, a couple of oak panels glued up, and some parts to my future router table jig.

I'll hopefully have time to work on it this weekend and get some pictures.

I'm sure the suspense has been killing you...  what is with all these medieval weapons? Well, back when my spouse and I were in our 20's we both thought they were kinda cool. So I bought a few as gifts over the years. Not having a good way to display them they just piled up in a closet. Last weekend I decided it was time to resolve this by building some wall mounts for them.

This is a project I more want more done than done well. Mostly I want the closet space back.

So I looked around for what wood I had that would make a decent wall mount and settled on some quartersawn white oak left over from building my dresser. Yes, the same white oak that I am using for my paper towel dispenser. Anyway, I printed out a shield pattern I  found on the internet and used it to cut out a quarter inch thick template. I used the template to trace out a handful of white oak blanks and a single 3/4" plywood blank. I cut them pretty close to the line on my band saw because I wanted to minimize cleanup time and then used my stationary belt sander to sand them down to the line.

I used my random orbit sander to sand all the surfaces from 80 grit up to 220 grit. It didn't feel like it should have taken too long but I believe it was actually a matter of hours.

I mounted a 1/4" shank 1/2" round over bit in my router table then used the 3/4" plywood blank to test my setup. Then when I was happy I routed the round over a little bit at a time on each of the oak shields. I kept raising the bit until I'd cut a little bit of a shoulder.

Then I considered how I wanted to mount them to the wall. Yeah, maybe it would have been better to think of that first but hey...  It all worked out in the end. I decided I'd mount them to the wall with a single anchor in the wall and a keyhole slot in the back of the shield. Making a jig to guide the router would have been easier if I'd made it before cutting the shields out. I thought I'd make a jig that I could clamp the shield in place that would guide my router. Then I realized I was putting the slot on the back. I could just cut out another "shield" out of 1/2" MDF and cut a slot to guide the router with a collar.

Since the template matched the shape of the oak shields I just lined it up, screwed it down then routed my slots. I used a 1/4" spiral straight bit to hog out most of the waste, then replaced the straight bit with a keyhole bit and finished the cuts. With the mounting slots cut in the back I measured the width of the handles on my weapons and drilled holed for 1/2" dowel supports.

This is pretty much the current state of the wall mounts. I've got to figure out how to secure the weapons on the dowels so that if they get bumped they don't fall and hurt someone or something. I'm not exactly sure how I'm going to do it but I have a couple of ideas. I'm thinking I'm just going to drill some holes and secure the weapons with a piece of paracord knotted in the back.

Then there's just finish and installation.

The super secret project? Well, I probably mentioned it already in another post. I'm building my Gaming Console Console. That will probably be a few posts by itself so I'll just mention that I glued up the side panels to the case a couple of weeks ago and otherwise they've just been sitting while I've been distracted by other things.

Stay safe out there. Physical distancing isn't necessarily about keeping you safe. Since covid can be asymptomatic and still be contagious everyone should treat themselves as infected and take steps to protect other people from themselves.

Also, note that I switched from Social Distancing to Physical Distancing. The point is that we all should not just hide from other people in our bunkers. We should be hiding in our bunkers but we shouldn't be hiding from other people. Keep your physical distance but keep your social circles close. Reach out via phone, text, email, google hangout, or whatever it takes to stay in touch with your friends and family.

If you know me and want to talk, just give me a call. If you don't know me but have my phone number please don't call. That'd just be creepy.