A fellow DangerClubber invited me to a murder mystery evening. My character was listed as a Gun Runner. This inspired me to make some rubber band guns.
I started out by making some rough shapes from plywood.
I went through three rapid prototypes in scrap plywood before I got a good shape.
Once I had a shape I liked I traced it onto some scraps of MDF
I used all of the scrap MDF I had laying around and came up with 21 pistols
With every project I try to develop a new skill. This time round it was bandsaw work. I have been meaning to pick up a bandsaw for ages. I used the bandsaw to cut out the blanks. I considered using a template router setup but it was going to be a pain in the ass.
rough blanks before sanding and routing.
Once I had all the blanks cut out I used a 1″ spade bit on the drill press to bore out the “trigger” holes.
blanks after routing on the left and before routing on the right
Next step was to round off all the edges. I used a 1/4″ roundover bit on the palm router and zipped through the roundings quickly.
all pistols rounded. ready for the next step
To fire rubber bands I needed to notch the front end of each barrel so its back to the bandsaw.
small V notch at the end of the barrel.
Final step was to glue a clothes pin to the top of each gun and clamp them together to set.
21 guns. glue drying.
The next morning I decided to take it a step further and try to make a couple other style of guns
I made a sawed off shotgun
And a Tommy gun
The rubber band guns were a big hit at the party.
Some friends of mine host a regular board game night at our office. They store their games in the basement and they have quite a lot of games so they’ve been borrowing a rough crate from me for a while. I’ve been meaning to put something together for them thats a little more civilized.
I planned the build to make maximum use of two sheets of MDF with the least waste possible
my rough plan board
Once I had all the panels cut down it was time to round the edges.
i used a roundover bit on a palm router to make the edges more user friendly.
On each project I do I try to learn a new skill or process. This time I decided to try pocket hole joining to pull the panels together.
I used my Kreg pocket jig to set holes in the panels
I added pocket holes every 6 inches along each joined edge with an extra one 2 inches from the end of each edge.
The pocket hole joints worked great, once all the holes were prepped it all came together pretty well.
assembling the end panel, base panel and central spine panel.
cabinet awaiting shelves.
Once everything was put together it was time to add wheels.
plenty of room for games
Years ago I decided that our 3ft square table wasn’t big enough to play board games on. I went through a couple of iterations of a removable topper before settling on using surface recessed sewing maching hinges.
this was a test of freehand routing to set the hinges.
These hinges allow the tabletop to fold up on itself for storage.
The table worked great for years but I never got round to finishing it. Raw plywood, even when sanded, gets dirty
left side is before sanding, right side is after sanding.
So when some friends expressed an interest in having me help them in making a similar table for themselves I decided that I would take the opportunity to finally finish mine. I also d cided to make a 6ft by 4ft topper for bigger games.
original topper, sanded and about to be stained
Max applying the first coat of polyurethane
in place, ready for games!
starting to set hinges on the 6ft by 4ft table
I put 4 hinges on the 6ft long version to help offset buckling
6 footer after stain
6ft tabletop all finished up and ready to use.
after 2 coats of poly
for my friends’ tabletop I sanded between the first and second coat of poly. I also added a third coat of poly for extra protection.
Every year at BoardMeeting we have a snowball launching contest. This year I built a catapult.
I put together an intial mockup of the catapult in about half an hour. I never actually got round to producing the actual catapult, so the prototype was pressed into service on the trip.
A couple of test fires got decent results, but the third test fire was catastrophic. the arm split lengthwise and required some significant repairs with a bag full of zip ties. This worked well enough to get 2 or 3 actual shots off. Unfortunately more structural failure was imminent as the screws holding the frame together proved to be too weak for the impacts. They sheared and let down the whole team.
The Catapult may work if re-engineered, but I haven’t yet decided if I’m going to bring this design back for 2013.
Christina sometimes traces inspiration artwork for her paintings. I decided to build a light box for her.
I used a spare 10″ round fluorescent ceiling fixture and a translucent box top I had salvaged.
I built the box from 1×6 board scrap. the box works reasonably well, but I think a 2×2 fluorescent ceiling fixture would give better illumination throughout.
I needed a workbench that was mobile so I could move around the building and still have all my tools and a worksurface handy. This bench was built from a sheet of 1/2 ply (plus an offcut) some 2×2 and some 2×3. I used castors that were big enough not to stick on elevator entries.
I was tasked with building a giant switch for the Cruzio fiber night ceremony
I decided I needed a new piece of furniture to hold the various AV pieces in our entertainment setup. all of the available units were expensive and set in the wrong dimension for a wall mounted TV. The only solution was to build my own.
I built the unit from 3/4 MDF with no frame. The MDF is edge routed and fitted with T-Molding for finish.
For My Friends’ wedding My Wife and I made some carnival games;
Fauxto Wall: Plywood on 2×3 frame. We built a wall and used 3 frames around holes cut through the plywood for posing. The piece de résistance was the addition of family photographs from the bride and groom.
Hat Toss: Plywood on 2×3 frame. A deer, a Jackalope and a hat stand made for a fun hat toss game.
Ring Toss: MDF, coca cola bottles. Beautiful painting made this piece really pop.
Bean Bag Toss: We had the Bride and Groom visit the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and have some caricatures drawn. My wife copied the caricatures onto a white painted backdrop and finished the piece with some excellent framing scrollwork.