Wooden Lightsaber Mk II

This is my second attempt at a wooden lightsaber. This is the first one I have assembled out of a batch of 4. I will put the other 3 up for sale at $125 each. You can reach me at shogun@12ftguru.com if you are interested.


More adventures in turning wood into weird shapes…


A Simple Blanket Chest

I finally finished up a six board chest for the end of the bed. The top is from a project I made when I was about 19. It consists of a key collection, laid on a plywood back and sealed in acrylic resin. Throughout it’s life the top has been part of a coffee table, a box for books and now it becomes a chest for the end of the bed. it has some bumps and scrapes, much like it’s builder, but it seems to have held up okay.

The bottom of the new chest is cedar, so it smells nice inside. The rest of the chest is stained plywood. Traditionally, these are made out of pine or a common hard wood, but I had the plywood on hand, so I went with that.

The fun part was trying to match the original stain from the old top. After trying about 4 different types, I actually found one already on my supply shelf that was pretty close.

I think I may add a chain to keep the lid from flopping back too far, and possibly some handles (This thing is heavy). However, I will have to wait for the cat inspection to be completed.

Next I think I am going to add one more set of shelves to the closet… but first the celebratory Scotch.

Baby Stuff (Not mine – Don’t panic mom)

A baby rattle and the first of a set of blocks, for Elizabeth and Aaron Karp (or more specifically, for their baby girl). The handle gives it a bit of a royal septer look. However, since I am sort of assuming Aaron’s first child will be named “Stormageddon, Dark Lord of All” that should work out just fine.

The head of the rattle was my first chance to work with a hollowing tool. I need some more practice, but it was fun to fiddle with.

The cherry wood blocks will be part of a set of 10 counting blocks with a number stamped on 4 sides and a corresponding number of paw prints on the other two sides.


A Valentines day project

I am generally of the opinion that we should be good to people all the time rather than only on certain celebrated days. However, this was one of those late night ideas that rattled around in my brain until I let it out last weekend. I am very pleased with the results.

These can be made with colorful scrap wood or leftover pen blanks (cedar is nice because of the smell). For those of you interested in how stuff gets made, a full project description is available over on lumberjocks.

Christmas Wood 2013

Some of the Santa output for 2013. Cheese boards, a small platter and a Ball jar full of balls (Hows that for meta?). I am curious to see how many people recognize the design in the middle of the smaller walnut platter.

Playing around with a sphere turning jig from the folks at ChefWare Kits. I like it a lot so far. There is a bit more play in it than I expected, but I think once I get used to the setup, I will be able to cut down on some of that.

The spheres are much more consistent. It’s not really quicker, but all things considered, I like it. I even tried my first spherical box. I have discovered that a friction fit lid on a spherical box is not really the best idea… it has to be pried loose.

Live and learn.

Next up, I need to try a saturn shaped box. 🙂

Sonic Screwdriver Prototype

Yes I am just a huge nerd… deal with it.

AAW Symposium

For those of you buried in soft peat for the last few days, I have been at the American Association of Woodturners symposium for the last few days. To call this experience eye opening would be a huge understatement. Lots of amazing work by talented people. I have a ton of new toys and new ideas. Very satisfying. Take a look at the gallery to see some of what I saw.

My two favorites where Michael Mode’s class on building a bowl from a single flat board and Keith Holt’s singing Spheres (they just look so dang happy)

Long Leaf Pine Bowl

This one is still a work in progress. I like the rim, but I am not thrilled with the bottom of it. I think I will live with it for a few days and see what I think about it.

Shelves finished!

After about 3 months of trying to figure out exactly what I wanted, I finally got the shelves up above the entertainment cabinet. I went with a sort of floating shelf design to try and limit the amount of dark wood in the corner (trying to avoid creating a black hole in that corner). Each shelf is a torsion box, bolted into the wall studs with 4 inch bolts and a walnut front.

Bench Project

Almost done with the work bench. Still need to get the legs level, install a leg vise, do a bit of final planing and get some finish on it. It’s been a long time coming, but I am very pleased. I finally get to do work on it, even if it’s not completely finished. It will be so nice to have a bench that does not assume I am 6′ 7″ tall.

Built In Cabinet in Walnut

Walnut frame and top attached. Need to add the kick plate at the bottom and then the shelves above. Almost there.

What are you doing with your evening?

I am drying angel wings on the kitchen counter top… What are you doing with your evening?

Pre Christmas

Pre-Christmas at my house. I have my tree up and about 80 hand turned ornaments. Now… if I can just keep my collection of furry little hellions from viewing the ornaments as a challenge to their authority.

Bowl and Balls

A natural edge bowl with some cedar balls I will be using as Christmas ornaments this year.

Walnut Frame

Finally finished a Walnut picture frame. The painting is by my friend Alex. I have had it for years but never had a frame, so I finally made one.


A new platter made out of camphor wood (I think)


Starting prototypes for Christmas ornaments.

Teak Folding Table

A teak folding table with Greene and Greene style accents. I have a second one I still need to finish.

Christmas Wood

Now that all the presents have been delivered, Santa can take this opportunity to share with the rest of the world all of the toys that came out of the workshop.

This year jewelry seemed to be the order of the day. I had started out several months ago turning large spheres and I gradually moved smaller and smaller. At some point I started making beads and then Bryan asked me if I had ever used magnetic beads. That’s when Christmas really started to come together.

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Long Leaf Pine Bowl

It all started with a very nice gift to me and ended up as a very nice gift for my mother…

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Oh this is my doom….

My first hand plane, built from scratch.