My profile? Oh hell. As it pertains to woodworking, I have none. Most of our children are grown with only one left in school and she will be a high school freshman this fall. I swear I was just pushing her on the swing last week because her feet couldn't touch the ground. She is the last of four, yes four, daughters. Life has not been easy.

Before I stray too far down that path...I got into woodworking not because I needed a hobby, I have several. I love hunting, fishing, working in my garden, raising my chickens and enjoying life outside. No, I got into woodworking because my wife asked me to. I'll give her anything she wants; unfortunately, she knows it. I could have gone my entire life without a wood shop and not felt I was missing anything.

I have built her many thing over the years. I fix everything that breaks and generally do whatever I can to make her happy. I've built her a gazebo, cedar yard swing, raised flower beds, chicken coops, whatever she asks for. But recently, she's been asking for finer things, like sewing boxes and blanket chests, and cabinets. In other words, things I can't build with a circular saw and a framing nailer. So, I bought some equipment and started learning how to use it.

It's funny really. I never thought about having a wood shop, but now that I have one, I can't seem to stay out of it. I really love it in there, cuts, bruises and all. Maybe someday I'll be able to actually build something nice. For me, this is strictly a hobby. I have no intentions of trying to sell anything or quit my day job. As I said earlier, I have four daughters (not to mention two grand daughters and two grandsons) that I can build things for. Although I do think this venture is going to put a serious hurt on my fishing time.

-- Where are the band-aids?---Pro Libertate!

Gazebo build #4: The finer details and finishing up

MontyJ — I searched and searched, but I can’t find any pictures of the rest of the process. As I said in the previous blog, the wife wasn’t exactly up for taking too many pictures. The rest of the gazebo was finished in the spring of 2009. I was never so...

Gazebo build #3: Roofing

MontyJ — I don’t know how exciting this will be. What can I say, it’s sheathing and shingles. The following two pictures show the upper and lower frieze, including the hurricane ties used on the center rafters: Staining the upper section would be...

Gazebo build #2: Roof framing

MontyJ — To have a double roof, you need a double header. The math is the same as before, but you have to decide how big you want the upper roof to be. This is the header for the upper roof support: I used rafter hangers on the corners. On the sides,...

Gazebo build #1: Laying it out...

MontyJ — In my very first build blog, I included a shot of a gazebo I built for the wife. Is it woodworking? Is it carpentry? Is there a difference? I like to think there is. Carpentry doesn’t normally require tolerances measured down to the thousandth of...

Sewing box phase two #2: Dovetails and a bow front drawer

MontyJ — My company vehicle decided to take a couple of days off by crapping a front wheel bearing so I had some extra time to spend in the shop today. Picking up where I left off when I went to Florida, I finished the drawer box. I was determined to have...

My first hand plane restoral #2: Cleaning

MontyJ — I’m using the electrolysis process for most of the cleaning. I chose this method because I already had everything I needed from other non-woodworking projects. Everything is coming out pretty well. I used Brasso on the brass (of course)....

My first hand plane restoral #1: Dis-assembly

MontyJ — On a recent business trip to Sarasota, FL I bought a rusty hand plane that I found on CL. The markings indicate it is a Bailey No. 4 Type 15. If anyone can confirm my identification, I would appreciate it. Here are some pics of the entire plane:...

Sewing box phase two #1: Getting started

MontyJ — The sewing box I made for the wife is very heavy. It was never made to be carried around, but rather to sit near her sewing table and give her extra storage. I’m now building a table for it to sit on. Here is where I’m at so far: After cutting...

First project, a sewing box #5: FInally finished

MontyJ — I made a lot of mistakes along the way, and it’s not perfect, but for a first project, I’m happy with it. I learned a lot along the way, so next time I’ll do better.

First project, a sewing box #4: Coming together, and cantilevers

MontyJ — I put one coat of Minwax Natural stain on the boxes and lid frames. It highlighted the grain perfectly so I’m stopping there. I really like the way it made the dovetail keys stand out. I also have the frames finished and have the foam and...

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