In converting a desk into a clockmaker’s bench, I wound up buying a router and router table to make the drawers. The router table has been taking up space on my workbench ever since.
I decided to make a rolling cabinet to mount the router table to, using scrap plywood and some drawers left over from a bathroom remodel.
Continue reading Building a Quick Router Table Cabinet →
The project is a good example of a thrown-together wood project, and a few lessons in “measure twice; cut once”.
I’m repairing a cuckoo clock that has a commonly-seen problem: one of the screws mounting the movement to the case has stripped its hole. Normally, I’d try filling the hole with a wood filler, but this time I tried something different: “Bushing” the hole with a plug of new wood.
Continue reading Repairing a Clock Case’s Stripped Wood Screw Hole →
The family cuckoo clock I’m working on is being capricious about when it decides to play the music, so I’ve built a test stand that will let me see what’s going wrong.
After looking through the wide variety of weight-driven clock test stands on NAWCC.org. I decided to build a floor-standing U-frame.
Continue reading Building a Cuckoo Clock Test Stand →
An older clock has usually spent years in the company of a smoker or near a smokey fireplace, accumulating layers of tar, ash, and who knows what else. A simple dusting or cleaning with a wood polish won’t necessarily remove these layers of smoke, so when it’s time to clean a vintage clock, it doesn’t hurt to clean the case as well.
Continue reading Cleaning the Cuckoo Clock Case and Figures →
As I said in my previous post about the Ansonia Derby clock, it seems that long ago part of the upper gingerbread broke and the owner sawed off the rest, reducing the upper gingerbread to a simple arch. I’d like to create new gingerbread for this clock. To do that I need to unglue the original, cut remnant and glue my to-be-designed gingerbread in its place.
Continue reading Loosening Antique Glue Using Heat →
(first published on Needhamia.com in 2007)
I find the rose windows of Gothic cathedrals awe-inspiring. From the rigid formalism of Chartres to the flamboyant explosion of Tours, their marriage of geometry, philosophy, and aesthetics with stone and glass is awesome. Built at a time when science and spirit weren’t as divided as today, each window is a statement of the beauty, order, and harmony in the world. Using only a pair of compasses (dividers) and a straight-edge (an unmarked ruler), the Gothic architects created myriad lace-like designs, making stone hang in the air and glass sing.
Geometry was my favorite math class in Jr. high school, and the Euclidean constructions that I drew with my compass and ruler I later applied in shop class and drafting class. Geometry was mathematics made beautiful, and I loved it.
Continue reading Geometry, Gothic Architecture, Rose Windows, and Christmas Ornaments →
In my previous post, I started working on the scale. In this post, I finish the woodworking, and painfully re-learn the woodworker’s adage: “Measure twice; cut once”.
I was so excited about the progress I’d made, and so eager to finish the drilling that I carefully measured, drilled the holes for one half of the Load Cell, then counterbored the hole for the first Load Cell nut… then discovered in my haste I’d counterbored the wrong side, and ruined the bottom plate of the scale.
Continue reading Dog Water Bowl Scale, Part 2: Measure Twice, Cut Once →
In my previous post, I designed and printed a Centering Guide to line up the top and bottom pieces of the scale. In this post, I finish assembling the scale.
Now that I have the Load Sensor Holders that I designed and printed, I drilled mounting holes in the blocks that will hold the Load Sensors.
Continue reading Dog Weight Scale Part 13: Load Sensor Mounting and Final Assembly →
In my previous post, I 3D printed parts to hold down the Load Sensors. In this post, I fix the counterbored holes to keep the nuts from protruding below the bottom of the bottom piece of plywood.
In the woodworking post, I used a router to cut counterbore holes on the bottom side of the bottom piece of plywood. These holes hold the nuts that hold the circuit boards.
Continue reading Dog Weight Scale Part 11: Routing Counterbore Holes →
In my previous post I described how to calibrate a load sensor. This post shows how to measure center of gravity, and shows a failed attempt to mount the load sensors to the scale.
Now that I’m using 4 load cell amplifiers rather than 1, I can calibrate each load sensor separately. This in turn will let the Arduino calculate Pippa’s real weight accurately regardless of what part of her bed/scale she’s lying on.
Continue reading Dog Weight Scale Part 5: Center of Gravity and a Mounting Fail →