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  • Pete

Home bar, beer box, wine coaster and an actual pub!

This week at UCC seems to have been very heavily drink focussed!

In between the showers I managed to roll the table saw and planer out of the garage again and make a bit more progress cleaning and regularlarising (is that really a word?) timber. So I spent some time putting together the pieces for the home wall bar, some left over ply from the mega shed to make the main box. A few lengths of oak batten from the lockup to make a frame, a few other offcuts will make shelves and the front but I'll keep the design a secret for next week.

Held together with a bit of tape for mock up purposes only!

Test fitting with a few bigger sized bottles and glasses, there should also be space for another shelf above the bottles, for small glasses/cans.

Next up on the beer cooler project, the pine box got a couple of coats of outdoor paint and a set of legs. These again were leftover from the mega-shed build and were already perfectly sized so just needed attaching to the box. I'm waiting on a set of castors and handles from Screwfix and will knock up a tray to go underneath which will hold a recycling box. I'm also still searching for a suitably sized box to use as the icebox inside.

Whilst doing some work on the CNC I also cut these letters which will go on the front to break up the grey a little. They are currently getting a coat of varnish.

Next up I had a last-minute request from another friend, and returning customer, for a wine bottle coaster as a birthday gift for her dad. The brief was "Could I make a coaster with a message engraved on it and have it ready for Sunday?" Ordinarily not a problem although a 4-day turnaround with a few other things in the diary would be tight particularly with a couple of glue-up steps required. Design-wise I knew more or less what I wanted to do, I had a section of mahogany bar top leftover from the uke builds, and since they live at "The Walnuts" I wanted to use some walnut too. I don't have a lot of walnut but had a beam that I had just thicknessed, so I cut a section off this, split it in half and glued it up to make a large enough flat blank.

So the plan was to create a base circle with a bit of a cup in the centre out of the mahogany and then cut a matching circle out of the walnut glueing the walnut to the mahogany base. The easy option here would be to glue the two bits together and cut them as one, and it would probably make sense to do it on a lathe rather than a CNC but I don't have one (yet!). However, since I love making life difficult, if I cut the circles separately then I could use the centre of the walnut as a glass coaster to match.

The design software I used for the CNC is fairly simple and one thing that it really struggles with is arranging text in a circle. I made some Christmas bauble gifts and clearly forgot what a faff this was. The letters all had to be moved, spaced and rotated by hand in order to get them to look right since the auto function in the software just doesn't seem to work.

The cutting of the mahogany base went well, with the bowl bit leaving a nice edge to cup the bottle. The cutting of the walnut however didn't go so well, and this was user error! I mixed up inside and outside cuts which left the ring a bit undersize, which when combined with the poor letter alignment just didn't look right and wouldn't allow for any rounding over of the edges without hitting the text.

So with a day lost I glued up another bit of walnut, fixed my design issues in the software and attempted number two.

Much better this time, the ring is wider, text better centred and rounded over edges.

This one was then glued to the mahogany base, using a tight-fitting plug to centre the two rings and a good number of spool clamps.

A bit of sanding, some danish oil, cloth buffing wheel and some renaissance wax and we have the finished product.

And finally, to end the booze themed week, I went to the pub for the first time this year and to Twickenham for the first time in 6 years. Tigers lost by 1 point but it was still a good day.

That's all for this week, stay safe folks.

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