As I mentioned in my first entry for the Spring Pole Lathe, I will be making regular updates on my progress for this project. We had company this weekend and I had the pleasure to share some shop time with my new friend who’s name is also Aaron. We had a blast and I hope he had as much fun as I did. After our guests continued on their vacation, I decided to go to my favorite lumber store, Capital City Lumber, and purchase the southern yellow pine, or “SYP,” for this project. Much to my dismay, they do not carry dimensional SYP. I could not believe it, then I remembered I bought some SYP at my local Home Depot for our raised bed garden last year. Armed with this information I headed straight for the nearest Home Depot.
If you have never purchased or worked with SYP, then let me tell you, it is heavy stuff! I remember the 2x10x12s I bought last year were really heavy. This time I was buying 2x12x12s and they are almost too heavy for me. I had a lot of difficulty choosing boards because they were so heavy and the selection was less than desirable. I settled on two boards and used the cut list I had prepared to have them cut the boards to a more manageable size. I loaded up the boards and headed home.
Once home, I had some additional cutting to do on the table saw. I know, I know what you are saying: “You used a power tool?” But 24+ feet of ripping 2x stock is not what I consider fun. Please remember even the olde timers had access to sawmills and were able to buy pre-dressed stock. This is just a modern sawmill.
After I had rough cut all my stock to length and width, I created a lettered parts list and a cut diagram from the drawings. Next it was time to surface plane. When I said that this lumber was less than desirable I mean, among other things this lumber was dirty. I do not have a thickness planer so I hand-surfaced the stock with a non-valuable junk plane so as to protect the sharp blades of my good planes. As you can imagine, we are taking about 10s of linear feet here so this will take me a while to finish. This is just as well as this stock is a little wet. Once planed, the stock looks really nice, see the before and after pics below.
One other thing, I purchased two “Gramercy Hold Fasts” from “Tools For Working Wood” on Friday and they were delivered on Monday. A hold fast is a clamping device used on a bench in predrilled holes and is very convenient for holding stock while chieseling, sawing, and chopping mortises to name a few. I added small pieces of leather to the flat ends to help keep from marring my work pieces. Here is a picture of the hold fast in and out of the bench hole.
One interesting factoid about these is they work better in thicker benches (The manufacturer suggests a minimum of 2″) and not so much in thinner benches. My bench is very thin, it is 3/4″ and only have one hole bored that is about 5″ deep. I had figured that the 5″ inch hole would work best and the thinner ones would be useless. As it turned out the thinner ones work best. I think the 5″ hole may actually be too deep. I do not want to use them too much on the thinner holes as the hold fasts will probably damage them. I will add a piece of leftover oak flooring to the back of my bench to give the holes more thickness, making them stronger and less likely to be damaged.
When I complete the workbench class this spring, I will finally have a bench made for traditional woodworking and the hold fasts will have a nice place to play.
Stay tuned for more, later, on the SYP and spring pole lathe.