Lumber Storage Rack

Just purchased and installed the Lee Valley lumber storage rack this past weekend. In the past, I have used comparable lumber racks that were L-braces anchored into concrete walls. They were sturdy enough for my demanding needs as a wood hoarder.

This time around, though, I needed a good solution… and I needed it fast as my wood was beginning to take over my carport. Then I spotted the Lee Valley rack on a local buy and sell. The item was second-hand so it was discounted at about 66% the retail cost. Perfect.

Now that it is up and holding, I can tell you it is an excellent rack and will serve me for several years to come. Currently, it is sporting a small selection of American ash, cherry, mahogany, oak, and walnut.

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Cherry Speaker Stands

Here are a couple of speaker stands I whipped up in cherry. Black Cherry is one of my favourite timbers. I love the colour, texture, and grain pattern. Over the years, I have heard a lot of woodworkers complain about it because the finish is too often blotchy.

I learned the trick to achieving consistency is to first apply an alcohol-based finish and then you are good to go with an oil-based finish. For the alcohol-based finish use shellac flakes in denatured alcohol.

One thing I would change if I were to make them again is to make the base 3-point rather than 4-point. If there is any unevenness in the floor, a 4-point base wobbles whereas a 3-point will not.

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Shooting Board and Planes

If there is one thing I have learned in all my years of woodworking is the value and importance of the 90-degree angle. It seems as if almost everything I do is related to or working off of this angle. I have also found the best way to accomplish 90-degrees is to cut as close I can on a table saw and then bring my piece over to my shooting board. With my shooting board I can consistently produce accurate angles.

Pictured here, are my two shooting board planes. The one on the left is my Stanley #51. I have been using it for several years. The one on the right is my Lie Nielsen #9 Mitre plane. I bought the Stanley from an online auction and the LN was purchased when they finally did a limited run on the plane about 4 years ago. (You have to be on their mailing list for limited runs to be able to purchase.) Both the Stanley #51 and LN #9 are a bit of collectors plane as they are no longer made. The #51 does the job but it is a little light in heft and the frog and blade are not up to the requirements of fine end-grain shavings in my opinion. I prefer the Lie Nielsen because of the comfort of the “Hot Dog” handle and the heft of the plane. As well the LN has a much more durable frog and a superior blade, producing the finest end-grain shavings possible.

Stanley #51 and Lie Nielsen #9.

And below, we have end-grain shavings cut with the Lie Nielsen #9 Mitre plane. If that doesn’t convert you, I don’t know what will.

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Music in the Shop

A great cover of King Sunny Ade’s, Mo Ti Mo by the jazz-funk band Medeski Martin, and Wood.

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