Having access to such a facility? Or timber?
The first project out of the workshop is proving to be fun (aren’t they all?) being a tip truck that I am making (and designing as I go). It is meant to be for a magazine article, but with the combination of trying to get the shed functional, demands of work, and family, I might have missed the deadline. Never-the-less, it was good to be ‘forced’ to get back to what the workshop is really about. Murdering electrons while making sawdust.
It has been a great little project to commission the SawStop on, and that has been fun in itself (as my previous post eluded to).
Making something out of your head is always an interesting evolution – lots of contemplation working out what is needed next, some false starts, but all in all, successful
Given (from the title), it is a tip truck, I needed wheels, and although you can make a round wheel on a tablesaw, I don’t see it being a good practice. SawStop or no, I’m not sticking my hand that close to any spinning blade. Instead, I went to my old trusted solution – wheel cutting bits from Carb-i-tool. I initially made them all the same size, but the front just looked wrong, so they were made with a larger diameter cutter. The rear wheels were made thick (about 30mm thick), so after the drill press, I headed over to the bandsaw to roughly cut the wheels free, then to the Comet lathe and the pen mandrel as it happens, to finish the job. As a system it worked well, and the tip of a skew chisel was used to cut grooves around the circumference as tread.
The truck is still “rough and ready” – it’d take about the same amount of time to finish it (which is normal for a project, I find).
I stuck with my standard principle (that I try to apply as often as is practicable) that it is only wood and glue (axles and all).
It will be pretty durable too, but as the weakest component are the axles (both on the wheels and also the tray), and they are simply dowel, easily repaired. I think it is always good to consider damage and repairability when making kids toys – you want something that will last the distance, even if there are a few repairs required along the way.
The first cuts on the SawStop
The first item made on the SawStop
The first item made in the new shed
I’m sure there a heap more I could come up with, but I think you get the point! The drought is broken, there is sawdust in the air. Actually, quite literally seeing as I have still to sort out the dust extraction. Oh well, that will come soon enough.
More on what I was making later, but first, the SawStop.
I definitely have to do some checks to ensure it is set up correctly, but was in a bit of a rush, so had to assume it was right. It seemed close enough, but in the long term I want to be positive rather than rely on assumption. That actually goes for every other machine in the workshop. Every one needs to be set up again, recalibrated, and in a number of cases, cleaned, lubricated, rust removed etc. They have lasted reasonably, but storage is unkind to all tools. If I had known how long it was going to be, I would (presumably) have been more diligent with oiling and wrapping.
Back to the saw. It is pretty awesome to be honest. Setting blade height and blade angle – you get a real feel for how solid the mechanism is.
So to “THE” mechanism. Does it make a difference? Yes – it really does. I have absolutely no intention of ever accidentally setting off the SawStop. I have no intention of wrecking a blade, replacing a brake, or finding out how much it’d hurt, even if the brake does save me from serious damage. But that piece of mind is so much more significant than I ever considered. I have always been particularly careful around the tablesaw, and that won’t change. The stress levels have dropped to more reasonable levels, and as such, it is so much more enjoyable.
I don’t recall ever having used the TS10L at any blade angle other than 90 degrees, despite being a left-tilt blade (I’m sure I did on occasion, just very rarely). In the current project, I happily flicked from 90 to 80, 70 and back again for different cuts. Was I doing something risky? Not at all – using the saw as it was designed. Just now I’ve discovered an extra layer of confidence, and used the saw as it was intended, rather than finding another way.
Each time I buy a good tool (such as some Stihl gardening tools a couple of years ago, or Festool hand power tools), I am reminded (in a good way) of the decision to choose the quality brand, even if it does hurt the pocket a lot more at the time. The SawStop adds a whole new dimension to that. Not only the quality aspect, but the sense of real relief that I have chosen a safer option. I may never use the SawStop brake (in a real save that is – not talking about a few sausages being sacrificed!), and I better not – I would be extremely disappointed in myself if that happens. But if it happens, that sense of absolute relief and confirmation of the decision to buy it would be incredible.
In hindsight, is the extra cost of the SawStop worth it? Abso-frikin’-lutely.
Think I have been a bit slack – things have been such a whirlwind getting everything done, and moved and finished (etc), that I don’t think I’ve actually published any photos of the shed?!
It is a pretty cool thing to have I can tell you.
Amazing how strong the little buggers are!
After lifting a number of items up to the mezzanine over the weekend with the chain hoist (and it was every bit as slow as I expected), I was excited to get the delivery today of the electric winch that David had mentioned in the comments recently.
Price was a very reasonable $105, and it can lift 125kg (or 250kg if you double the line up with the pulley and hook supplied).
The dimensions of the crane arm (red, then black portions) were too large for the supplied clamps, so I took a piece of steel I had to hand, and after removing some welded brackets from either end, it slipped perfectly into the inside of the crane arm. It is long – about 1200mm, and only about 350mm sticks out the front. I am well aware that this means any load is now further forward than the furthest load point that was originally designed for the crane, but it is a simple calculation to work out the new maximum loading.
Given I had already scaled back the maximum load I would expect the setup to carry, I am well within the safety margins of the crane. And as the winch with a single wire is only rated for 125kg, that further prevents ‘a situation’. Only? for a little over $100, I am very happy with the 125kg/250kg load capacity of the winch – more than enough for my requirements. Of course, when calculating the new maximum loading on the crane, I have had to factor in the weight of the beam I added, and the weight of the winch. See – my engineering degree is finally useful for something!!
This is a pretty sweet setup! The other benefit of the beam I added, is it can still be removed and the whole setup used elsewhere if I need an electric lifting winch. Either that, or at that price I might just get a second one if I need to.
When I was talking about the possibilities earlier and mentioned the 4×4 winch I have, and that it wasn’t suitable for lifting, this winch aptly demonstrates why. There is a mechanism on the cable/drum that actively locks as soon as you release the power button. A winch used to pull vehicles out of the mud, or whatever other use you have one for (I have it bolted to the trailer to help pull heavy loads in) does not have this feature, so when you stop winching if you were lifting something, the load would remain on the motor, gearbox and bearings.
I still want to work out a bit of a platform of some description, so it is a quick task to load and unload rather than having to rig each item up that is to be lifted.
So there you have it – now I’ll be able to easily store items away, or get access to them, without having to try to manhandle them up a steep ladder, or spend forever yanking on a chain hoist chain!
One of the family friends does woodcarving on the side, and had a job dropped onto him at the last minute.
So we decided to get the CNC Shark to do some of the heavy lifting.
6 shields, by tomorrow! Not a problem.
2 hours later and they were done.
I suggested that he follow Dennis’ lead, and use a resin filler – makes the designs really pop.
Anyway, it was a bit of a distraction, but at least sawdust was being made (and even the Festool ETS 150/5 made an appearance). Slowly a sense of normalcy is returning to the shed space.