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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Christmas is just around the corner and I wanted to do some woodworking projects as gifts. I am looking for ideas/inspiration. Mostly of smaller projects to give to friends at work. If a project takes you a couple of hours to build, it will probably take me a weekend! :blink:
 

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Andrew Close
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i'm planning the same thing. at the moment i'm thinking i'm going to make cuttingboards/butcherblocks for my mom, mom-in-law, and sis-in-law. walnut and maple.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I was kind of leaning towards some sort of boxes. Maybe a small box with a lid that has glass in the wood frame on top. What the hell you would use is for, I'm not really sure. I spend most of my time making "shadow boxes"... some call them flag display cases. Most of my woodworking is geared towards military displays boxes. I'm really thrifty, my wife calls me cheap, and want the most bang for my buck. I could buy gifts, but the older I get the more I really appreciate the stuff the kids made me. Granted, some of the art looks nothing like my kids claim it to be, but I treasure those works of art the most. One looks like a elephant... it is supposed to be a picture of me,,,, got to go look in the mirror again. Yeah it kind of looks like me too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
aclose, what will you seal your cuttingboards/butcherblocks with? I heard vegetable oil isn't the way to go. I can't remember what the solutions was. What type of wood were you going to use? I would love to make a butcherblock for my mother-in-law...with hear head on it... just kidding... just a little bit anyway. Happy vets day to all who have served and those serving. semper fi!
 

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I made a bunch of serving boards the other day for presents. I took a serving plate, traced the outline onto posterboard, glued that to scrap 1/4" ply and cut out and made a template. Then I rough cut scrap cherry, maple and walnut to the shape on the bandsaw, pinned the template to the piece and went around it on a router table with a pattern bit. I cut a bunch of Euro beech scraps into 1/2" by 5" strips with beveled ends and glued and pinned 2 on as feet. Then I used lightweight mineral oil rubbed on by hand. I made about thirty of the things in about 4 or so hours.

I actually didn't make that template that day, it's one I use from time to time to make boards we retail and give to cabinet customers.

We make a lot of serving and cutting boards from scraps. Generally I use the butcher block oil, which is just lightweight mineral oil. But on walnut, I prefer walnut oil.

Vegetable oils are said to go rancid, but I've heard that canola oil works. Personally, the light mineral oil and walnut oil does so well I can't see any reason to use anything else.
 

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Andrew Close
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harddog,

i was planning on initially treating it with plain mineral oil. a couple sites i've looked at say that you should oil it once a day for a week, once a week for a month, and then every month for the rest of its life.
there are several products you can use. butcher block oil is typically mineral oil with some other additives. some places sell a mixture of mineral oil, beeswax and lemon or citrus. don't use veggie oil.
i learned all i currently know in an afternoon searching for wood types and finishes for cutting boards/butcher blocks online. :) there are quite a few places that sell them and sell conditioning products as well. good luck!
 

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I can build a cedar chest in about 4 hours, not counting set time for the glue, and this includes sanding and sealing. Now this is basic.....but worth it...nothing says love better then a gift made with your own hands.
 

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I saw something the other day at a kitchen store. It was a knife holder that used bamboo stickers. All there is to it is an open ended box filled with bamboo stickers. The thing was butt-jointed and sold for forty bucks. My wife's after me to make some of these for Christmas presents. I think I could do twenty of them in a couple of hours and only have to buy the stickers.
 

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So I'm making the pencil holders. I'm making a single right now as a prototype to see how much work it really is (you experienced dudes always make stuff look easy) but so far.... This project is VERY easy.

I'm using maple and bubinga. I still need to get a router bit to fancy up the edges of the bubinga, but everything else was simple cuts on the table saw.

I guess this would be my first "real" wood working project. Yay me!
 

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Andrew Close
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Progress Report...

not to hijack Harddog's thread; but since i mentioned Butcher Blocks, i figured i'd show mine...

my shop :smile: the kitchen table. it's too cold out to glue up wood in the garage right now.
Butcher Block1.jpg
Butcher Block2.jpg
an approximation of what the finished product 'may' look like
Butcher Block3.jpg

i've one more set of blocks to glue up before i can re-rip the blocks into new strips to flip and re-glue. i'm not sure if i'll be able to get to this this weekend as my table saw can't handle the thick walnut and maple and i don't have any clamps large enough to glue to the final size. i'm currently borrowing clamps from my dad. i guess i'll have to ask for clamps for Christmas. :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
aclose, I like the idea and look. My wife would kill me if she came home to find those on our kitchen table. She hates it when I cut wood in my garage, thats where she parks her car, dust everywhere.

I looked at the wood whisperer pencil holder. Simple and pretty neat. Probably a great gift for the kids teachers. I will try to build one by christmas...next year of course. Seems the more older I get, the more busy I am.
 

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Andrew Close
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aclose, I like the idea and look. My wife would kill me if she came home to find those on our kitchen table. She hates it when I cut wood in my garage, thats where she parks her car, dust everywhere.
heh, my wife was none too pleased. :smile: and lately she can't park in the garage because i have my table saw in her spot. :laughing: just wait til i get a real table saw!

i'm going to a friends tomorrow to re-saw the blocks i've glued up. then i'll re-glue them in some other pattern. these first few will probably just be some sorta checker board pattern. i'm going to make my wife one that i'm hoping to make a bit fancier.
 

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Andrew Close
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Joasis, nice ponies. you'll have to post picts of your herd once you're finished :smile:

ok, so last weekend i went to a friends and recut the blocks that are in the picture above. then during the week i glued everything back up into butcher block size pieces. today i went to my father's and planed the butcher blocks smooth on top and bottom and cut off the rough edges on his table saw. here's the rough product so far:

Butcher Block4.jpg

Butcher Block5.jpg

Butcher Block6.jpg

Butcher Block7.jpg

Butcher Block8.jpg

i still have finishing work to do. i'm planning on routing the edges with a simple round-over and was thinking about routing a cove or some sort of groove across the front and back edge to make it easier to pick them up. then i have to sand and oil them.

so far i'm pretty happy with the way they're turning out. next time though, i will thickness my woods all to the same size. i thought using 4/4's maple and 6/4's walnut would give it a unique look, and it did. but i think i'd personally like a more symmetrical block, all the little squares... well, square. :smile:

i'll post picts of the finished products...
 

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O.K. I'm biased but how 'bout a folding guitar stand like Taylor makes for the musician in yer life???

This one doesn't fold but you can re-design it to very easily.

 
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