Lathe drawer #1

Friday and Saturday I got a bit of time in the shop, and used that to start on the lathe drawers. My nice(r) set of lathe tools have been in their box or otherwise strewn about since I got them a Christmas ago. Actually, they had mostly been in the box under the lathe, so they were relatively cared for. With the new stand, I had nowhere for them to go, except for the planned storage.

I cut up some plywood in a 4″ width, and sized it appropriately to fit the stand. Then I unscrewed it and sized it a bit more appropriately. Then I did it again. I’m awful at making drawers, I can never get them right. When I finally got it working fine, I started looking at how the tools would sit in the drawer. This is an open design, for chips to fall right through, so I had to make strips of wood that spanned front to back in the drawer that the tools would sit on securely.

I had quite a bit of 1.5″ cedar left over, so I cut that at 2″ strips and went on a bit of an adventure. I had a general idea of what I wanted to do, so I just set out to try and capture it. I cut 1″ holes with a forstner bit at the drill press and attempted to cut directly in half. I failed at that, cutting to one side. This meant shallow holders on one half, deeper on the other. These would be the part that holds the handle portion of the tool, and it turns out that 1″ holes are spot on perfect. The deeper portion actually works better, so when I eventually revamp it I will take that into consideration. I cut two more regular strips to hold the business end of the tools. Because I knew as a first effort I would be disappointed, I simply screwed the holders into the front and back of the drawer with two screws on each side. I know I’ll be redoing these with the knowledge I took away from this effort. Right now, it can hold eight tools, but may modify that in some way going forward. I could move them over to one side or something. Just spitballing. The tool-end supports will get embedded magnets when I revise it as well.

The second drawer is yet to be built, but I think I have the parts laid out ready to cut. Some of that is due to wanting to finally try out the lathe on the new stand. I had to hunt around for the wrenches to remove the chuck, and find the drive center. It had been that long since I had it on, and yet another reason to make the storage drawer.  I chose another bit of 4×4 cedar, which is absolutely awful to turn. I did it anyway, and thus got a nice indication of how the stand works. It does pretty dang well. I’m interested in getting a bit better turn-friendly material on there and having another go.

I had made an unholy mess at this point, and needed to clean up. The second drawer would have to wait.


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