The flip-top cart – part five

The day of reckoning. Time to see if my hard work resulted in anything useful. With all the important stuff trimmed, it was time to get to the task of putting the important bits on. I hit up the store and got the hardware I needed to mount the planer, sander, and casters. I also picked up another length of threaded rod for insurance, since the other one was about an inch and a half too short. I cut the rod to length and popped it in. One problem I did notice is that the hollow rod keeps coming out of the bushing like it should be sitting. I’m not sure what I can do about that at this point. I added some PVC washers to help keep the top from walking too much.

After that I got the planer mounted and eventually, the sander. Like others before me I noticed that the little rubber screw on the top of the spindle was too tall for it to clear the shelf. Some of the problem is that the spindle drops down when the sander is upside down, giving even less clearance. I attempted to rout a clearance channel, but issues ensued and I made a hash out of it. I will probably just remove the belt attachment and store it in the drawer, which means I never should have routed the channel in the first place. Perhaps a 1/4″ piece of plywood will hide the mistake. All of the inserts for the spindle and such will have to go in the drawer as well. The sanding drums will probably be fine. I also have to make sure the planer is down to a lower height before flipping as the height knob will hit the shelf. That knob also sticks out a bit more than I wanted in the back. I need to head back to the store and pick up some latches to secure the machines in their operating positions, and it will basically be done minus the drawer.

The project is basically done, and…well, I’m a bit disappointed if I’m honest. The whole unit ended up bigger than I anticipated, and as you can see I can’t open the drawers right there in front of it. Not an issue long-term as that miter station is going to be rebuilt, but it could cause issues later. It’s also taller than I anticipated, which might make it uncomfortable to use the sander. The rod not being firmly ensconced in the bushing on one side also concerns me, but not to the point where I am concerned about the tools. I will have to watch for deflection on the sides over time though. Hopefully the way it is built I will avoid that.

I don’t honestly know how long-term of a solution this will be. Thinking about it, I would almost rather have a fixed shelf on top and just have the sander sit on the lower shelf and raised up for working height. It is something I could do in the future by removing the flip top and bushings, and putting in a fixed upper shelf. Easily doable, and something I will consider especially if my sander continues to only see light use. I will probably at some point redo the hardwood trim if I can get a better technique for the resawing.

With the planer on the new cart, I had a decision to make about the old one. I started thinking about it a couple of weeks ago, as until I get permanent storage for my hardware it would be handy to keep around. So I used the TS55 to cut right at the interior divider/support to keep the hardware container section intact. For now it is sitting on the base of my drill press. The other half I will probably just toss, but I’m keeping it until I need the room.

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