Sunday, September 16, 2012

A Little Attraction

About a week ago the gang over at were discussing how many of us woodworkers seem to have multiple projects going on at the same time.  There were several reasons mentioned from short attention spans (“was that a squirrel?”) to stocking up on products to sell, or the mounting pressure to start attacking the long list of Christmas presents that are expected from family and friends. 

At first I thought, “Well I’ve only got two things going right now…oh no wait, three…unless I count those Padauk boxes, so that would be four…and then there’s the…”   I finally landed on a count of eight different projects in various stages of completion in the works right now so I had to take a step back and ponder why it’s so easy for us (me) to start a new project before a current one is complete. 

Some aspects may remain an unsolved mystery (“Oh look, another squirrel!”) however, for me a lot of it is timing.  There are times when I only have a short time to work in the shop, so I’ll look to smaller projects to get my fix in.  Then there are times when I’ve got a day or two to spend down in the shop so the fervor to start something more substantial sets in.  Time of day also plays into the story.  With a napping baby or an 8:00 bedtime for Danger Boy, running the jointer or table saw is sometimes frowned upon.  Don’t mess with Mom and the serenity that comes with sleeping boys.  Just pull out the sandpaper or Danish Oil and keep it down!

With this deeply philosophical question rattling around my brain I’ve challenged myself to start working through my list of open projects to bring them to a close.  First up…the Oak candle holders.

I had decided to construct one of these candle holders with a break-down configuration.  After cutting the small cup shape in the candle platforms I flipped one set over and cut some shallow 1/4 inch wide holes on center.

These little pockets are sized to receive some small rare-earth magnets.  A little dab of Super Glue gel and they are locked in for good.
I then drilled a small counter-sink and pilot hole into the tops of the shorter base pieces.

Another few drops of the Super Glue and a couple taps with a tack hammer and these small carpet tacks are seated nice and flush.
Even though these magnets are small they really pack a lot of attractive strength.  Once they connect with the head of the carpet tacks these small platforms lock down onto the base quite nicely.  You really have to jolt the platforms pretty hard to break the magnetic bond, so these should do a great job in keeping the holder together and ensuring that the candles don’t tip over or spill when moved or bumped.

I’ll be applying a hand-rubbed, Danish Oil finish to this breakdown set.  Once that’s cured and buffed out I’ll send this one on its way to its new home.

The remaining four candle holders will be permanently joined.  Two will have this same clean-lined, simple symmetrical configuration, while the other two will receive a bit of experimental shaping to change the form up a little.

Stay tuned…the Danish Oil that I’ve applied to a couple scrap, test pieces revealed some great color and tone to both woods in this design.


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