It’s good to be back

Now that service has been restored, it’s time to catch up.

Not a whole bunch has been done in the shop, if I’m honest. I did, since the last time I post, pretty much finish the drawers on the miter cabinet, save one. I do need to make some adjustments to them before I add the fronts and add pulls, but they are holding things. Nice things. Pretty things. Things that have plugs.

Anyway, that’s been the extend of the shop work done. Until today, that is.

I’ve always had plans to add a lathe to the shop if at all possible. Part of the latest redesign was in part to accomplish that. When I was looking at what a mini/midi lathe could do, though, I started wondering if I could possibly make room for a more full-size model. I want to make bowls, in addition to pens, pepper grinders and the assorted small turning, if I could get any good. At the price that the Harbor Freight 34706 sells for, it seemed a no-brainer to at least see if I could squeeze it in the shop somehow. So for a couple of weeks I tinkered with Sketchup to see what could be done.

 

The result is a work in progress. I won’t be showing the layout concept until I know it’s viable, because I change my mind too much as it is. However, one thing was crystal clear – something had to be done about the router table. In it’s current form, it was doing an okay job at being an outfeed table, but it was a short outfeed table. With the vacuum cleaner relocating under the miter saw cabinet, I now had a nice unused space under the extension table of the saw. I thought it might be a worthwhile effort to eliminate the wasted space and put the router table there.

This isn’t the first time I had considered this, but it was the first time I had incentive to try it out. I attempted to go the easy way out and simply trim the top of the table to fit between the rails. Didn’t work – the carcass hit on the rail connectors and was a bit too short anyway. So, I built a new router table today. It’s quite a bit lighter, which isn’t necessarily a great thing. It does fit the space, though, and that is what matters right now. This weekend I will also make an insert to bridge the gap between the router table and the main part of the saw, as I’ve moved the included router section over to the left side. I plan to have both routers be able to be mounted for easier setups. Disassembly of the old router table will take place as well, along with possibly moving one main thing to see if the lathe will fit. If it does, I may pick it up this weekend.

I will post details of the router table once the shop recovers. It’s been a mess for a couple of days, getting this plan put into effect.

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