Custom Curvy Frame

Triple Oval Frame

This project was a custom frame for three prints that my wife wanted to put together.  We tried a bunch of different arrangements and considered doing them separately, but eventually decided on the side-by-side layout above.  I designed a few different shapes so it wouldn’t just be a big rectangle and built the one my wife liked best.  I haven’t painted or stained it yet because we’re still deciding what would look best.  I’d like to paint the frame a distressed white and paint the wainscoting a light blue, but who knows what we will settle on.  Below are some pictures capturing the process.

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Air Force Retirement Gift

Cyber Retirement Gift

I recently had a good friend who was retiring from the Air Force and I wanted to make him something special as a gift.  He had a successful career in both the Intelligence career field and then as a Cyber operator, and his new journey in life is going to build upon both of those.  Often times, military retirees get shadow boxes created, but they can be rather large so I thought I’d make him something small and conversation provoking that he can simply have in his office or on a desk.  This small shadow box contained the two badges that show the mastery of his craft.

Built as a simple oak frame with a little acrylic blue inlay, and the badges floating around some silver vinyl lettering.

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Rustic Fix to Broken Glass Plate

Repaired Plate

During the time I was working on the final assembly of the lamp shade I posted last night, we got the idea to solder an ornamental glass plate we’ve been lugging around for years.  It used to sit above our entertainment center when we were newly married, but once we added pets and kids to the mix, it took a tumble and broke.  Luckily, it cleanly broke into a small number of pieces so we’ve kept it for probably 15 years thinking we would fix it someday.  It’s quite the rustic looking fix, and my soldering skills could use a lot of work, but it’s nice to have the plate back out in the light again.

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Stained Glass Lampshade

Stained Glass Lamp Shade

Greetings Internet Peoples!  It’s been far too long since I’ve taken time to post, and while I’ve been quite busy, I still had time for a few projects along the way.  I’ll try to get all caught up over the next week or so.

The lamp shade at the top of this post is one I made in the last stained glass class I took.  We picked those colors to connect with a small collection of sea glass we’ve been gathering over the years when we lived near the coasts.  The idea is eventually to find or build a base that we will fill with the glass, but for now, this one looks nice too.  This was a complicated build because I had to cut six of everything and I had little margin for size deviations or the panes would not line up.  It was definitely challenging but a fun project.

Cut Stained Glass

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Oak Chest

Finished Chest

I’ve been working on this oak chest on and off for the last month or two and finally got it completely put together.  It’s a simple design I based primarily on the few large items that need to fit inside.  I just need to decide if it’s getting Tung oil or stain.

It should be a large improvement over my first prototype and is for our oldest son’s childhood mementos.  I also haven’t decided if I want to build a tray for it.  Next chest will probably use box joints on the corners.

Chest Closed

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Building a bird nest

Building a bird nest

My youngest son’s marching band is doing a program this year featuring songs that all have some reference to birds (a good excuse to use “Free Bird” as the show closer, and yes, it’s awesome!).  The band director had asked the build crew to make some props for the percussion pit at the front of the field to represent the students playing in nests.  The head of the build committee is an awesome guy with years of experience in theater designing and building props.  This year he got stuck with me as his assistant.  The image above was the first idea that we pitched to the band director for the nests, a sort of Peanut’s Woodstock styled flat image that would incorporate all the colors of the other props on the field (large vinyl tarps with brightly colored bird houses printed on them).

Proposed nest detail upgrade

At a certain point I drew up another idea that would be more detailed, but some of the steps in fabrication would have taken much longer so we abandoned it.  The director liked the original idea, so once we got the approval for the cost of materials we went shopping and got to work.

Continue reading

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Stained Glass – Finished Shield

Glass Shield Finished

I finished my second stained glass class a few weeks ago, but it’s been too hectic to post the results.  Overall, I like how my little Captain America Shield came out (though the outer edge still needs a little work to be consistently smooth).  I like being able to do both the lead came and the copper foil method, as they each have applications where they are better suited.

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New Print Frames

New Poster Frames

I recently got a few new additions to my poster wall that I needed to build frames for.  I wanted the style to match the larger frames I had purchased for my other posters, so they ended up being pretty easy to make.  The one new thing I did was follow a suggestion a good friend gave me some time back for wood filler.  I’d never been happy with the various brands I tried so he recommended just mixing glue and sawdust from the wood I was using to the consistency I wanted.  I gotta say, I really like how easy it was to get just what I was looking for and the end results.

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Stained Glass – Copper Foil Class

copper foil window

I enjoyed the last stained glass class I took so much, I decided to take the next one which teaches the copper foil technique instead of lead came.  We are making small fans that can be put infront of a nightlight, but I didn’t like any of the patterns that were offered so I figured out my own.  It was between Captain America’s shield or Captain Marvel’s crest.  I told the teacher that I was cheating in the last class because almost all my cuts were straight lines, so I am paying my penance this time.  This first image was from cutting during the first night and the one below was the aftermath.  (I normally try to produce much less waste, but it was important that the grain of the glass all radiates from the center, so I had to lose a little bit more.)

copper foil aftermath

The last two images are from the foiling process, which I did mostly at home.  Next step is to spot solder the joints and then solder over all the copper tape.

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Privacy Window Finished

privacy window finished

This is what my second window looks like all puttied and polished.  We are going to hang it in the very window, but up 12-14 inches so the cats can still peer out underneath it.  I just need to go get the hooks and some chain before I can install it.

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