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Author Topic: Useless Projects  (Read 1558 times)
Polysorbate80
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on: December 01, 2017, 07:16:28 PM

Do we have a thread for home improvements or other such bullshit?  I cannot remember.

Anyway, over a year ago I decided it was time to get around to building a bar in the basement.

Step #1: Figure out what I want to build.  I wanted a Tiki bar, and  I got a great deal on a slab of Koa wood



Looks like shit as a raw flitch, but at $1800 the price was right.  Fortunately it arrived - the weather warmed up, my driveway got slushy, and the driver of the delivery semi didn't have the balls to gun it up the slope.  He managed to get himself unstuck eventually...

Here it is partially planed and sanded, rubbed with denatured alcohol to show the color and texture.





Polysorbate80
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Reply #1 on: December 01, 2017, 07:16:49 PM

Step 2:  PROCRASTINATE!!!
Polysorbate80
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Reply #2 on: December 01, 2017, 07:24:00 PM

Step 3:  Finally get off my dead ass and decide to start again.

So, next thing to do is build a big ugly box in the basement



That thing is entirely 2x10s and 2x8s.  Why?  Because the goddamn bar top is oddly shaped and forces me to have a small base.  There's barely room for anything other than the kegerator in there, so no point in making shelves or cabinets.

And Koa is super-dense.  The slab is 250 pounds, easy. 

It is also not anchored to the floor.  The slab under that laminate is concrete, and I hate putting anchors into that shit.  So the box needs to be heavy to counter an off-centered, very heavy slab.

There's also a hundred-pound sandbag inside that thing, just because it was left over from another project.  I figured, why not?
Polysorbate80
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Reply #3 on: December 01, 2017, 07:26:27 PM

Step #4: Make box less ugly.

The bamboo to wrap it just arrived this afternoon, but I haven't had a chance to get to it yet.  So here it is cleaned up a little with some trim, from the other side where the kegerator is visible.

Polysorbate80
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Reply #4 on: December 01, 2017, 07:30:38 PM

I said the slab was heavy?  I had to load it into the tractor's bucket to move it from the shop to the basement, and wrassle it in.

I'm waiting on victims to help lift the goddamn thing onto the base



The painter's tape is covering a bark pocket I want to preserve.  Unfortunately my epoxy won't arrive until next week at the earliest, so I need to hold it in place until I can pour.

I'll also be filling most of that void visible on the lower end, but leaving room to run beer tubing up through.  It's not a defect, it's a feature...
Polysorbate80
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Reply #5 on: December 01, 2017, 07:34:03 PM

The end that sticks out will need to be supported, for stability and to reduce the risk of breakage.  I purchased a tiki to put under it



but I dunno, I think this one might be too tall.  Might need to remove a head...

Seriously, it's like half an inch too tall.  It was that or buy one way too short and have to build a base.  So, surgery is in the works for the tiki gods.

rattran
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Reply #6 on: December 01, 2017, 08:26:00 PM

I built a 8x10 winter shelter for the ducks today, 4' of it covered, the rest will be 1/2" square hardware cloth. I'll get some pictures tomorrow. Stick-frame construction is hard work, but it goes fast and at the end of the day you have a building, so it's satisfying.
MahrinSkel
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Reply #7 on: December 01, 2017, 09:37:02 PM

I'm planning on building some furniture, with my only tools being a 12 inch double compound sliding miter saw, a 20V impact driver, and an orbital sander. Starting comparatively simple (3 level 46 inch wide entertainment shelves) and working up to monstrous (king sized platform bed with headboard and footboard).  All red cedar, stainless steel deck screws (except for a few honking big truss screws on the bed), and black iron flanges and pipes.

Have the tools, waiting until I feel like renting a truck to pick up the lumber (I don't think 4x6 rough-cut red cedar timbers will do well in a VW Jetta). I'll post pictures of the disaster progress when the time comes.

--Dave

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veredus
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Reply #8 on: December 03, 2017, 01:08:26 AM

I built my wife a headboard and nightstands out of pallets a few years ago. It was my first project and decided to tackle it when I realized it would be a shit load cheaper to buy the tools/hardware needed and build it myself. Actually thinking about making a new set since I know so much more now and feel I could do quite a bit better job. But here it is.






And one of the nightstands pre stained.



Polysorbate80
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Reply #9 on: December 03, 2017, 02:07:57 AM

I know a couple of people whose entire houses are furnished in a style not unlike that; the "distressed wood" look is popular around here.

Step #5: Tiki Trephining

I got a couple of friends semi-loaded on wine and they foolishly agreed to help me lift the bar top up into place.  One of them also gave me a good idea--get a couple of small 8" tikis, mount tap handle threads in them, and use them on the tap.

Before attaching the slab to the base, I wanted to get the tiki in place for a leg.  It was only slightly too tall, and all I planned to do was strip the finish off the top, bore a couple holes for pegs (and corresponding holes in the bar top), and then trim a tiny bit off the base of Mr. Tiki.

Holding a 6" diameter tiki in place on a saw turns out to be tricky, the damn thing slipped and I trimmed off too much, leaving it slightly too *short*

All I had on hand to build the base back up with was 2x10 stock.  I wound up making a boot for it by marking out a 7" circle (the diameter of the tiki base) on a chunk of 2x10, routing it out 3/4" of an inch deep.  Then I marked an 8" circle on the same center, rough cut the circle with the saw, and smoothed it into a pretty decent circle on the belt sander.  The tiki is hand carved anyway, so being slightly off-round actually fits with the rest of the piece.

I had to (very carefully) trim slightly more of the tiki base to get the combined tiki/base to the right height, but it works.  I stained it, put it in place, glued it up and then in a moment of paranoia decided someone will eventually get drunk and kick the damn thing, so I added some metal brackets to stiffen it up.

That done, I put in the lag screws from the cabinet up into the top to fix it in place.  Whole thing is probably 600 pounds by now.

After that, staining the bar base, and then enjoying the fumes while applying bamboo.  One piece down, 80-ish to go:



I need get a different blade for my scrollsaw; the ones I have are for rough cutting.  Not the best thing for thin-walled bamboo.  It tends to bind.

This is as far as I got before the smell drove me upstairs for the night



RhyssaFireheart
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Reply #10 on: December 03, 2017, 09:57:57 AM

I hope you plan to never move, because that bar is going nowhere.  why so serious?

Looks cool though.  I like the rough shape of the bar top and the tiki support looks like it turned out great.

Samwise
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Reply #11 on: December 03, 2017, 11:46:36 AM

I am very envious of that tiki bar.  More than once I've fantasized about setting up my den (which currently functions mainly as storage/staging for garden projects) as a tiki-themed entertaining area.

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
Polysorbate80
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Reply #12 on: December 03, 2017, 02:00:40 PM

Do eet!

Don't get me wrong, I love gardening, but you can use a shed for that (and they're super easy to build, as long as you don't have weird building codes or something)

The nifty thing about the tiki decor is that by it's very nature it's ok to be a bit rough around the edges, so one needn't spend tons of time fretting about small imperfections, as long as it's put together soundly and safely
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Reply #13 on: December 03, 2017, 03:18:37 PM

The main obstacle to doing anything useful with my den is that it's five doorways all opening onto one small room.  It's basically Sigil, the City of Doors.  One item on my stack of possible projects is to round up five artist friends and ply them with food and drink and get them each to paint one of the doors in a different style.



So maaaybe a bar could fit along that right hand wall?  But then there's noplace to sit (I have a couch in that space now, and as you can see pretty much every other piece of floor needs to be open to foot traffic or it gets super awkward).  Unless... bar stools?  Might work.

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
Polysorbate80
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Reply #14 on: December 03, 2017, 03:49:44 PM

Tricky space...might depend on what could be done about the doors, and how large you need

Could the bedroom door on the top side be rehung to open into the bedroom?

Do you need a door into the stairwell, or could it be removed?  No way to reverse that one.

Is that an exterior door in the upper right? Looks like it, and would make sense if you're storing gardening stuff there.  You'd have to get a custom one or do some modification to get one that swings out, they pretty much all swing in.

It's still not a huge space but then a small group of people could sit there wihout being targets for doors, and you could move the stools behind the bar when it's not in use.  No cabinets behind, but underbar storage might be enough unless you need a sink or some such.
Merusk
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Reply #15 on: December 04, 2017, 07:38:32 AM

That's not a den.. that's an entry hallway that's just large enough for furniture. Yeow.

I'd share pics of my latest project, but y'all might just be too weirded out by it. It's come to light that I was in deep denial about a lot of things in my marriage, the least of which was how much utter CRAP had been sitting around. Trying to de-clutter has revealed some pretty "wtf" things and my place looks that much worse for it.

The past cannot be changed. The future is yet within your power.
RhyssaFireheart
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Reply #16 on: December 04, 2017, 09:51:16 AM

That's not a den.. that's an entry hallway that's just large enough for furniture. Yeow.

I'd share pics of my latest project, but y'all might just be too weirded out by it. It's come to light that I was in deep denial about a lot of things in my marriage, the least of which was how much utter CRAP had been sitting around. Trying to de-clutter has revealed some pretty "wtf" things and my place looks that much worse for it.

Okay, now you're pretty much obligated to show us some of this stuff. You can't just drop a teaser description like this and leave us hanging!  Oh ho ho ho. Reallllly?

Strazos
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Reply #17 on: December 04, 2017, 08:03:37 PM

It's fine as long as you don't go full nerf.  why so serious?

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Polysorbate80
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Reply #18 on: December 06, 2017, 10:20:01 AM

I honestly don't know why I thought applying 80+ pieces of trim would go quickly.



Still waiting on those photos, Merusk  Oh ho ho ho. Reallllly?  If it makes you feel better, I can post one of my "junk room".  Somehow one of the basement bedrooms got turned into junk storage.  It's buried three feet deep in a complete disaster of random stuff, almost all of which likely be best disposed of through fire.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 10:22:53 AM by Polysorbate80 »
Viin
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Reply #19 on: December 06, 2017, 10:36:28 AM

Awesome woodwork. We had a dining room table built by a woodworker/carpenter and it turned out really great, I envy the skills and tools to pull those projects off!

I finished my long term project this summer (pic spoilered), and now I'm searching for something else to start. Might build a canoe, but haven't decided yet. This aquascape was my mini-project this summer, which is still a work in progress but not very involved at this point.


- Viin
Merusk
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Reply #20 on: December 06, 2017, 10:37:52 AM


Still waiting on those photos, Merusk  Oh ho ho ho. Reallllly?  If it makes you feel better, I can post one of my "junk room".
Been trying to build a shareable folder because Dropbox doesn't let you share anymore and I don't want to download them just to reupload to something like imgur.  New workflow development is a bitch when you just don't have time to play around like you used to.

I think I've got it, but I can't test again until after lunch. Just taking a quick "mental break" before diving back into work.

The past cannot be changed. The future is yet within your power.
Polysorbate80
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Reply #21 on: December 06, 2017, 10:54:03 AM

Cool plane, Viin!  Slap some WWII nekkid lady nose art on that thing
Merusk
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Reply #22 on: December 06, 2017, 12:39:33 PM

Apple could make this harder to share but they’ve done a good job making it a pain in the ass already.  Here’s some photos of the basement

https://www.icloud.com/sharedalbum/#B0J5qXGF1fMAg6

All those boxes got moved when we moved 4 years ago.  They are all being donated or thrown away. I did this exercise last year for half a day and the Ex did it with the boxes you see here. At the time she said all these were necessary things for us to keep. I didn't question at the time, I was tired of arguing. Yeah...

The Glasses/ kitchen pantry I did last weekend.  I had  5.. 5!! sets of plates for 6-8 people. I now have one set for 6 people. The plastic cups were more evidence of this, and some were old cups dating back to a 1998 Disney World trip.

The shirts have been 'air drying' at the laundry spot for about 18 months. I've since thrown them into the donation pile.

The baby books? My youngest is 14 at the end of the month. No, I have zero idea why those are still in my house.

Missing:
* The moldy wallet I found.  I recall throwing my old wallet away quite well. It was tattered, torn, and worn-through. Daughter told me the Ex picked it out of the garbage.
* The 2011 phone books from KY I found when throwing stuff away 2 weeks ago. Wtf.. we moved old phone books 60 miles for zero reason.
* The pile of ferret shit under my stairs, hidden behind several boxes. I didn't want the goddamn rodent. I despised it running around the house. Guess I had good reason. I'm going to need a respirator and tyvek suit to clean it up. I nearly puked when I found it last night.
* The box of ornaments I'm missing. The Ex claims we didn't have them and they got lost 'in the move.'  Funny, I remember hanging Chewbacca, My son's Brass ornaments, and my X-wing ornament last year.
* The old component stereo. Also gone missing suspiciously since last year. Hey-o.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 12:49:25 PM by Merusk »

The past cannot be changed. The future is yet within your power.
Polysorbate80
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Reply #23 on: December 06, 2017, 12:48:03 PM

Looks like a lot of unpleasant work but it's not even close to the worst I've encountered.  One guy I foolishly agreed to help move, I swear he was using old pizza box piles for furniture  ACK!

I live in an area where I could drag most of that outside and apply fire with reckless enthusiasm (I'll have to record and post video when I torch the old chicken coop), but I suspect you're not in the same boat.  Which is a bummer, because watching it all go up in clouds of cancer-causing smoke is highly satisfying.

Edit: Yeah, the ferret shit is maybe in the running.  They're cute little bastards, but they stink so much
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 12:50:54 PM by Polysorbate80 »
Merusk
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Reply #24 on: December 06, 2017, 12:52:44 PM

The clothes, sheets, towels, and a lot of the old toys are still in good shape. I made one Honda CRX-load donation to Salvation Army already (the telescope, infant toy, etc)  There's at least three equal-sized loads that need to get taken in the next few weeks.

Those that aren't are getting thrown into old, crumbled boxes for disposal. Garbage day last week had 4 "large" moving boxes of additional crap. This week looks like it will be about the same.

The past cannot be changed. The future is yet within your power.
Bunk
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Reply #25 on: December 06, 2017, 01:56:51 PM

Looks like my parent's basement, but less cluttered (seriously). They still have numerous unpacked boxes in the basement and garage from when they moved there 16 years ago. I am very much dreading my Dad's upcoming retirement, just because I know they need to move in to a smaller space.

All the stuff in this thread is cool, but very depressing for an apartment dweller who grew up in a big suburban house.

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Polysorbate80
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Reply #26 on: December 13, 2017, 12:37:12 AM

My epoxy finally arrived, but it was too late in the day to mix up a test batch.  That, and I sorta lost the pipe I'd planned to run up through the wood from the kegerator to the beer tower  Ohhhhh, I see.

So I left it in the care of my assistants



And decided to start work on the sideboard.  Since the bar has no internal storage, I need a place to put glassware and booze.

The large shop isn't a good place to work with glue or finish, being full of cats.  So I spent an hour or cleaning out the dust and spiders from the smaller shop and moved the saws and drill press over.

There of course is no koa wood here in town.  The local hardwood selection was pretty uninspiring in general--there was plenty of it, it just had no character at all.  The only piece that spoke to me at all was a piece of 8/4 African mahogany.  Not quite enough to make the whole top for the sideboard from it, so I had to punt and get a second piece to fill it out.

So it's roughed into shape and glued up



Looks like shit under the metal halide lamps.  It's a tradeoff, there's tons more light in the small shop but you can't trust color.

Here it is moved into the house, cleaned up and rubbed down with alcohol while the glue dries. 



Tomorrow while the epoxy test cures, I'll haul this thing back out and smooth it.  By hand, unfortunately.  I need to get an electrician to beef up the power in the shop while I'm at it, I'd love a large jointer and planer but I don't have a free 20 amp circuit...

Polysorbate80
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Reply #27 on: December 14, 2017, 05:31:41 PM

First rule of epoxy:  no matter how much tape you use on the first try, the epoxy WILL find a hole and drip  Ohhhhh, I see.

One more small pour on the big bark pocket should do it, then a little sanding and on with the finish.
Polysorbate80
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Reply #28 on: December 15, 2017, 11:06:57 AM

These guys really need names, any suggestions?  I wanted "Drunk" and "Disorderly", but that got vetoed  Ohhhhh, I see.

Samwise
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Reply #29 on: December 15, 2017, 11:26:33 AM

OMG that's fantastic.

I suggest "Don" and "Vic".

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
Polysorbate80
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Reply #30 on: December 15, 2017, 11:47:25 AM

Don the Beachcomber/Trader Vic?  That's a good choice
Samwise
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Reply #31 on: December 15, 2017, 11:56:21 AM

I was going to explain the reference and then I thought "guy's building a tiki bar in his basement, he probably knows who I'm talking about."   awesome, for real

"Nice attempted blast about my "drinking".  I do enjoy a nice cuppa, but that is because I am a bon vivant of gregarious nature and cheery disposition." - Ab
Polysorbate80
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Reply #32 on: December 15, 2017, 12:10:17 PM

Well, the two honestly didn't occur to me until you mentioned them, so you beat me there. 

I blame the lack of rum.  Why is the rum gone?  Wait, it's not, I've got one bottle of Koloa left.  Time to drink it before I get back to Kauai on the 26th!
Paelos
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Error 404: Title not found.


Reply #33 on: December 15, 2017, 03:54:29 PM

Shits and Giggles. Because the one on the right looks like he's pooping and the one on the left looks like he's laughing.

This is why I'm not allowed to name any of the pets.

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Khaldun
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Reply #34 on: December 18, 2017, 09:14:26 PM

Hic and Cup?

Har and Dehar?

Bottoms and Up?
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