Woodworking Mainly

Monday. Time to get back to work, even though I don’t have a job. I just have tasks that generally turn in to challenges, sometimes ending with a victory. I thought I was on track for a victory with my challenging task of replacing pieces of baseboard where electric baseboard heaters were originally installed when the house was built.

Things were going along fine, for one room, then a crises emerged when it was revealed to me that no one sells what I need. You see, the previous owner, and builder, owned the local lumber yard so had access to whatever he wanted or needed. As I’ve mentioned previously, he used copious amounts of mahogany for moulding around doors and for almost all of the baseboards. Nice, sturdy and very pretty wood. But, as the saying goes, “they don’t make ’em like that anymore!” I’m talking about when cars were made from some pretty sturdy metal, like my old truck. Same is true for the old baseboards. “They don’t make ’em like that any more!”

Yes, I can buy mahogany  baseboard material at Home Depot, and Lowe’s, but it is not the same dimensions. It’s all thinner, and not as tall. This becomes a problem when trying to fill gaps in existing trim … they do not match up, and outside mitres are particularly ugly. Knowing this was true, I didn’t even try. Diane and I searched all the Restore Stores in the area, numerous times, looking for matching baseboards. We did find two boards, 50 cents apiece, that totaled about 16 feet, and I used them in our bedroom during that ‘refresh’ effort. They were difficult because they were painted white at one point in their lives and all that woodwork in the house is stained and varnished. Getting the paint off was a major project.

While exploring alternatives, I discovered another method that turned out to be eerily similar to how the Federal Reserve, and our elected officials, are handling our national debt. I was going to borrow from one room to finish another. For obvious reasons, we all know that won’t work. One aspect of my plan was, however, to replace the trim in the back rooms with cheap stuff, with the same profile, that I could stain to look like mahogany. So, that’s the direction I went. I suspect the government will try something like that soon. Like right after they vote themselves another pay raise, maybe.

The hall to the bedrooms is done with ‘fake’ mahogany which I stained with DOHG-OCDIA (Dark Oak High Gloss – One Coat Does It All) from ACE. Good stuff. It’s really shiny if you let it try long enough before making a lot of sawdust in the same room.

Unfortunately, the pieces removed from the hallway were not enough to fill all the gaps remaining to be filled. So, today, I robbed Lydia’s room of all it’s baseboard and shoe moulding in order to ensure the living room gets the full treatment. They have been sanded and covered with DOHG and look really pretty but they’re not shiny enough so I’ll add another coat tomorrow. One of the boards is 12′ 7″ long.

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All of you professional wood working type of folks will really enjoy this next one. Despite all the clutter, It’s where all the ‘magic’ happens. Underneath it all is my table saw which I, thankfully, don’t need for this project. Yet.

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Next is a simulation of what my new work bench area will look like if I ever nail the braces to the upright panels. At the moment, the only thing keeping it vertical are a selection of clamps. There will be five areas on the top into which drawers of various size will be installed. I get to build them, if I can find my dovetail jig. If I can’t, I was thinking about getting a minnie dovetail jig for some other projects anyway so it will work out.

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“The Batchelor” just ended so I need to stop this and look busy. Diane will be here any second to check her email.

Bye!

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