For the second week’s homework I wanted to make something that I can actually use and not just put aside to the blue box.

I love tea. My personal brand has “tea” in it (even though not with the literal meaning), so I decided to make tea coasters. From wood, of course.

First I head to Home Depot again to buy some wood. I got 6FT of common board.

2015-11-02 12.07.49

I measured how much of it I need. I decided to make 6 pieces plus few more for testing. I also marked the wood for cutting.

Width: 8.8cm (3.46″)

Length: 9cm (3.54″)

2015-11-02 12.17.55

Then I prepared to cut the wood.

2015-11-02 12.21.15

Lesson! Camping! I clamped directly onto the wood and it left a mark.

2015-11-02 12.26.21

Lesson learnt: I took some scrap wood and it didn’t happen again.

2015-11-02 12.31.59

Then it was time to sand the wood (sanding machine is officially my favorite one in the shop even though I left all dusty).

I sanded the test piece first to see what I can do.

2015-11-02 13.03.24

2015-11-02 12.46.57

2015-11-02 12.46.39

The piece appeared a bit too thick, so I decided to cut it in half with the saw.

2015-11-02 13.13.13

After I had all the pieces I needed, I sanded all the other pieces. It was a bit complicated to sand the body as I didn’t want to have my fingers close to the machine, but then I took some extra wood to help hold the piece I was sanding.

2015-11-02 14.21.34

2015-11-02 14.21.43

Here’s what I finally got:

2015-11-02 14.54.59

2015-11-02 14.56.37

I really like working with the wood, because even if you are making multiple objects, each of them is completely different and has its own take (either ornament, or clamp on top, or a bit different sanding and so on).

Next: this is only half-way through; after the next class I will laser cut “my cup of tea” on each of the pieces and then wood stain it or put some wood varnish on it.

My questions:

  1. Can I laser cut on such small pieces?
  2. What’s exactly the difference between wood stain and wood varnish and which better to be used?
  3. Can I use router on such a small piece? We tried it in class last week but on the bigger piece and I’m not sure it would work on the coaster (I’m asking as part of the laser cutter could be exchanged by that).

2 thoughts on “[fabrication] week2: multiples (part1)”

  1. Good work. Yes, always use some scrap wood when clamping. You were using pine, which is a soft wood and can easily be marred by clamps.

    Did you use the bandsaw to cut the coasters in half along the thickness? Not the easiest thing to do, good work.

    The power sander can remove a lot of material very quickly. But it looks like you were in control of it.

    Yes, you can laser pieces this small. And we’ll go over that in next class.
    There are a lot of different wood finishes you can use on these, but since they will be laser etched and be used with hot mugs, you may want to test a few to find the right one. We can discuss further.
    Yes, you can use the router on small pieces, but it makes it trickier. We can discuss particular setups if you’d like.

    1. Thanks for commenting, Ben!
      Yes, using scrap wood was a big lesson for me. Indeed, I used bandsaw to cut the coasters in half: first pieces didn’t come out that well because I didn’t pressure enough but then I took some scrap wood again to hold the piece tight to the bandsaw, so it would go even.

      I would appreciate a lot if we could discuss further both the wood finishes and using the router on small pieces. I will have my questions ready for the class and/or schedule office hours.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *