2013 – The Lost Year

It is pretty easy to say that 2013 was a bit of a lost year. I only blogged twice last year and that was somewhat indicative of the amount of progress I made in the shop. The one “big” project I completed (Greene & Greene Inspired Towel Rack) I did blog about.

Despite the lack of posts there were a few other woodworking projects, fine and otherwise, that made varying levels of progress this year:

  • Flower Bed – In our back yard we had a pretty boring wall space beneath our breakfast nook. I happen to have some 4×6 beams that we dug out of the ground in the backyard (they had been used to line a swing-set area) that I could repurpose here. There wasn’t a ton of woodworking here – mostly cross-cutting to length and a handful of pocket screws to hold everything together.

FlowerBed

  • Raised Bed Gardens – The flower bed above isn’t the only dirt-filled box I built in the spring. My family did a ton of vegetable gardening this year and I put together the raised beds to make that happen. We built four beds that measured 4′ by 12′. Those beds were put together from construction 2x12s, held together with corner stakes and deck screws. In addition, there are two 4′ by 4′ beds (on the right) that took a little more effort. I used the same reclaimed 4x6s mentioned above to build these. Those boards were resawn on the band saw, then edge glued to give me the desired height.

RaisedBedGardens

  • Happy Knife, Happy Wife – The other “fine” woodworking project I actually completed this year was an anniversary gift for Michelle. She really threw herself into the gardens this summer and wanted a knife to use for pruning and harvesting the vegetables. I bought a Damascus steel blade and added wooden scales to the handle. I used a cocobolo turning blank for the scales and an O1 steel rod for the pins.

HappyKnifeHappyWife

  • Roubo Bench – I made some more progress on my bench build since I posted about my first leg tenon last March. I’ve since cut the top tenons on all four legs and hogged out all four mortises for them. There is still some fitting to be done (remember, these are the first four M&T joints I’ve ever cut for a project) before moving on to the stretchers. As can be partially seen in the photo, the bottom of the bench works fairly well as a bench itself as I’m working on bench parts or other projects.

BenchProgress

  • WFC Easel – The walnut you see in the picture above was purchased to participate in the Woodworkers Fighting Cancer charity build. I didn’t complete the project in time to benefit the charity, but at this point I’m almost finished. There should be a blog post (I promise to post more in 2014 than I did in 2013) in the near future covering this build.

That was pretty much it for shop-related work this year. I hope to finish the last two bullets “soon” with the easel completion being imminent and the bench being a labor of love that will be finished when it is finished.