Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Future Ukelele Project.

Last year, my son and I had produced a couple of instruments- an electric bass guitar and a ukelele. The bass was built from scratch with a jaguaresque body and the ukelele from a Stew-Mac kit. I'll post both when I get a chance.

Over the weekend,  we received the remnants of my Aunts' instrument after the uke vs. SUV incident. I'll bet you can't guess who won.

The body is trashed, but the neck is in good condition with a  little damage to the heal. My son likes to customize that part anyway, so this will be our next experiment. He wants to do a cutaway because it looks cool. I think a cigar box uke may in order, but we'll wait and see.

Marble Race Chair

I first saw this chair at Jeff Miller's studio here in Chicago at his yearly Lie Nielsen tool show. Luckily it was featured in his book Children's Furniture Projects.

Marble race chair.
Chair was made from walnut I had sitting around and some scrap liberated from my friends' woodworking school. It is finished in Tru-oil since I had a big bottle of it from my bass guitar project. As usual it look longer than I thought. This one will probably end up in Colorado for my grand nephew. I am hoping to make another one for the church fundraiser in the fall. Of course I will wait until the week of the fundraiser to build it.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Knife Grinder

The grinder is now complete. Except for a nut with a plastic insert and a graphite pad for the platen, it is ready to go.

Specs are as follows.

2 HP motor with a VFD speed control. Make sure you use a TEFC motor as the metal dust/swarf will foul the motor. I found a stainless steel one on Ebay cheaper than a normal one. The VFD is in a NEMA 4 enclosure. In order to make the motor variable speed you need a three phase motor hooked up to a VFD. The VFD takes single phase 220v to 3 phase 220v.

The motor is 56c frame with feet.

I have two grinding setups. A flat one that tilts and a dedicated 8" wheel. I also have a 2" wheel for the handle.

A tool rest. The grinder is set up to tale the standard 1 1/2" tool post found on a KMG grinder.

The metal frame kit was found on the Bladeforum.com forum in the classified.

Now all I have to do is make a couple knives.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Knife Making

Last year, I decided I needed to make a couple marking knives. As usual I searched the web and stumbled on a new hobby of knife making. As you know the guys motto on hobbies, is "Every project needs a new tool. " Or every hobby needs a lot of tools.

I have made about a half dozen knives, but was using a small grinder. A kit was offered on the Bladeforum.com classifed and it was off the races. So without any further adieu, here is the Eerf knifegrinder.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Matt's Turn

My 12 year old is also a tinkerer. I think he has more artisitic ability than I'll ever have. This year while on our family vacation, we went west to Yellowstone and Mount Rushmore. After we visited the Crazy Horse Memorial, Matt decided he wanted to learn to carve.

I started him on the first project I ever did, a dove. He spent a weekend carving about 6 of these, so he would have "An army of doves." He has also carved a polar bear and is starting on a bird.

One of his school projects was to make 3 gifts for the nuns' bingo night at the convent. As the original dove pattern was to be on a cross, he decided that this would be his gift. I'm sure the sisters will really enjoy his handywork.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Meet Mr CMOY

Last winter, I finally joined in the crowd and bought an Ipod. I was disappointed with the earphones, so I upgraded to a set of Shure earphones. This led me to the Headwize forum. Since I have this DIY thing, I began building compact headphone amps. The guy who started this was Chu Moy, who published a simple opamp headphone amp and started many a hobbiest on their merry way. There are many versions and upgrades to this amp in both the elctronics end and also the cases. The standard case is the venerable Altoids box. I've built about a half dozen of these amps from both point to point methods and also commercially made pcbs. I also constructed the patch cord from silver coated cables with TFE insulation, but that is another post.

Cmoy under the hood

I've showcased my 3 favorite Cmoy amps. The first point to point Altoid amp was my first attempt. I spent an entire Sunday afternoon getting this together including troubleshooting. the larger one is also a Cmoy amp with an 18 volt power supply and a crossfeed circuit-hence the two additonal switches. The last Altoids amp was built form a PC board I bought from a guy on Ebay. It also includes a rail splitter power supply and a bass boost circuit. I don't need the boost for my regular headphones, but the Shure earphones could use the help.

I also have completed a SOHA tube headphone amp, but you will have to tune in next time to see this one. Also on deck is a class A Tube headphone amp and a Dynaco 70 upgrade.