Olly Writes

Woodwork, writing, walks, DIY and more!

Category Archives: Projects

Washer/Dryer on Wheels

Living in a home that’s still holding on to more than an average share of hand tools, it’s hard to resist that urge to pick them up and to make something. This one will feature as a YouTube video at some point but I’d like to share some photos with you now.

You may remember that I purchased a portable TecTake washer/dryer back in March and one of my goals since has been to make this compact unit fully portable. So, what I’ve gone and done is I’ve mounted it on wheels!

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Book Box Balls-Up

In my last update, I believe the pair of book boxes I was making were edging close to completion (or, at least, the finishing stage). That was over two-months ago and, even though I’ve since effectively closed the door on that workshop for the time being, I can tell you that I worked on three separate (and a-little-bit-secret) items during the closing weeks.

Today’s update concludes the book box project for the time being.

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Woodworking Update 13/01/2014

I haven’t written much about woodworking for a while. As you’re probably aware, I moved home not long ago and, for an indefinite amount of time, I still have access to the place where my tools are currently stored… I just don’t seem to have enough of the time, money or weather at the moment! But I am still keeping two projects on-the-go and, to be fair, they’ve been in said state for a while. This is what I wanted to share with you this evening.

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Book Box Beginnings

Whenever I’m working on something, I always seem to have two other projects running at the same time. You might already be aware that I’m making a folding meditation stool and you’ve probably seen in recent weeks that I’m slowly making progress on a pair of chess boards. But what you won’t have seen much of is this third project, which I’ve only really started this week.

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Wanting Walnut

On Saturday, I began machining strips of walnut and maple to make a pair of chess boards. I was asked about making these a few months ago by someone with a preference for true ebony over walnut but, with winter soon to fall, I’ve decided to press on and attempt to get these done by November(!).

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Cutting Board Construction

It’s already the middle of September! About a month ago, I was finishing off a pair of end-grain cutting boards… Not my first of the year but I wanted one of these to go to a friend for her birthday (she previously expressed an admiration for the ones I made earlier this year). Instead of doing another video on the making of these, I decided to instead document it here on my blog. It’s been a while since I’ve written about a project like this.

My sketch. Because I don’t smoke and fag packets probably are too small.

These really don’t take very long to make, especially as I’ve had two previous attempts at ‘practising’ in the last couple of years. This post may end up quite a long one though, as I did happen to capture very many images along the way.

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Guitar in the Making

I can’t remember exactly when I last blogged about making a guitar but I do recall (probably last year, when I purchased two sets of plans – or was that 2011?!) stating my intention here on at least one prior occasion. it’s been an ambition for the last, say, three-years and it’s only really in the last year that I’ve been able to build my confidence up to a level at where I feel fairly competent in having a go.

I would like to reiterate that I do not currently play a guitar; I have never played a guitar and I really don’t know much about them… From the three sets of plans I’ve now purchased (from JAGuitars), I’ve chosen to go with the Gibson SG style (my latest buy) simply because, to my eye, it has the most attractive and appealing aesthetics! Plus, while Googling for user-made replicas a while back, I came across some walnut SGs that looked quite stunning… And I still have more than enough walnut left over from a near-£300 purchase back in April. 😎

This is my first video in what is going to end up a series of indefinite length. There are questions over whether or not I’ll be able to finish this before November comes – I mean, it’s taken me about two months to complete the templates, to upload this video and now, I still haven’t ordered the necessary hardware or figured out exactly what I need to buy!

My current plan is to get the ‘workshop stuff’ (machining and hand tool work) complete before the inevitable cold snap arrives; regardless of where I’m living and where my tools are likely to end up at that time. I can imagine myself French polishing on a kitchen table if I have to (I dislike ‘plastic’ lacquers and, well… I made that table!!)… If it comes to it. To my mind; strings, straps and even scratchboards [if that’s what they’re called] can be fitted afterwards. I could even do that sat on a living room sofa with 8in of snow underfoot outside!

I’m hoping mine ends up something like this. [Photo taken from: dawsons.co.uk]

Anyway, I hope you like my ‘introductory’ video to this project. I have unnecessary trouble in uploading this one because my editing software decided to shuffle the order of scenes as I as working through my final cut! But, on Saturday night (Sunday morning), it did reach YouTube just after 1am and it’s been very, very well received since. Thanks largely in part to this video (along with your own efforts and contributions), I’ve now surpassed the 700 marks for subscribers to my channels. I feel as though I’m well on course to reach 1,000 before December! 🙂

Thank you all.

Cutting Board Chasm

This post is mainly for the benefit of those who do not currently follow my Facebook page, where a few of us have already begun a discussion on this. Of course, I’d encourage you to head over there now and to click the Like button if you haven’t done so already!

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When disaster strikes!

I received an e-mail from one of my recent cutting board recipients last night that. When I saw the heading, I knew it wasn’t good news and could only assume that something had gone wrong with at least one of the boards I’d made for them. In my mind; at least one board had begun delaminating along at least one glue line. But, as you can see in the photo above; what actually happened was far more devastating!

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