Monday, March 24, 2014

DIY Drill Press Drum Sanding Station with Dust Collection

Some of my more popular videos and blog posts so far have been of shop projects.  That is unfortunate because I do not intend to do a lot of shop project videos.  As I have stated in recent posts my woodworking and DIY projects in general are currently centered around meeting needs we have in the house.  Granted it would be easier to simply go out and buy some of the projects I have planned.  The immediate gratification meter would be a lot higher as well.  However, doing something yourself provides a more sustainable sense of satisfaction.

However, that impending sense of recurring satisfaction can feel small and distant when faced with the colossal and daunting task of sanding said project.  Sanding is integral on so many levels.  Not just to make a project visually appealing but to simply make the pieces fit together.  I know, I know, no woodworker likes to admit they use sanding techniques to get their project to simply fit together.  The fact of the matter is that sometimes you cut a piece to long here or a dado to shallow there.   No one is perfect and as I have stated before, sometimes things happen and you work around them.

One of the more popular techniques I see and have used myself is to pair the jigsaw and spindle sander.  Jigsaws are a versatile tool and in my opinion should be one of the first tools a fledgling DIYer should add to their arsenal.  However, I also find that many new DIYers also do not fully understand the jigsaw.  Its cutting action is both up and down as well as forwards and backwards.  The different settings on a jigsaw determine how aggressive that cutting action will be.  It also indirectly determines how precise or clean that cut will be.

I am getting a little off topic here so I will save those details for a separate blog post.  Just know that jigsaws based on settings, blade used and handler technique all determine how accurate a cut will be.  For that reason, many people stay well away from the cut line with the intention of sanding to the line later.  This sanding to the line is often done with a spindle or drum sander.

You can purchase a bench top model of an oscillating spindle sander.  The cheap ones retail for around $150 and go up from there.  However, because DIYers think, build first, buy only as last resort, today's project will be a DIY Drill Press Drum Sanding Station WITH Dust Collection.


You know the drill if you have been here before or seen any of my other videos.  Shop projects like this will almost always be exclusively made out of scrap lumber.  In my case I have the following:

3/4" pine plywood for the bottom of the base and sides

3/4" pine 1x4's that have been glued together to meet the dimensions I needed for the top of the base.
(NOTE: I did not use pine ply for the top because I did not have a piece that was big enough and plywood does not edge glue the same way solid wood does.)

2x6 for the drum portion of the build.  Mine was a left over piece of 2x6 from the DIY vertical herb garden planter boxes I did last week.

4 brad nails 1-1/2" 18 gauge (optional)

wood glue
1/4" bolt
1/4" nut
1-1/4" x 1/4" washer
1/2" x 1/4" washer
1/4" lock washer

Cut List:

(Note: These diminsions are for my SKIL 3320-01 120-Volt 10-Inch Drill Press.  Obviously you would want to take measurements from your own drill press table.)

Base Unit Bottom

8-1/4" x  8-1/2" x 3/4" Ply

Base Unit Side Pieces

2 - 9-1/4"  x 4" Ply
2 - 8-1/2"  x 4" Ply (NOTE: One of these pieces will probably need to be cut in order to fit around your drill press table's main connection with its shaft.)

Base Unit Top

10-1/4" x 11" solid pine


2" diameter piece of 2x lumber

Final Thoughts:

I tried gluing two 3/4" pieces of ply together for the drum.  It never worked as well as the 2x lumber.  Voids in the ply, varying moisture content and amount of glue used may all have an impact on how true the drum will spin at any given time.  Also I used 120 grit self adhesive sandpaper for the test run seen in the video.  I did not cut a groove in the drum for the sandpaper.  I just wrapped it around and cut exactly to size.  I had no issues with it peeling off or otherwise coming loose.

As always if you have questions or comments you can leave those here.  You can also leave a comment on the specific video page or visit the contact page on this site.  

Have fun and happy DIYing


Sunday, March 23, 2014

DIY Vertical Herb Garden Planter Box

One of my passions in life is woodworking.  I have thought about why that is.  I spent many of my earlier years aimlessly wandering.  People would say "Get a hobby."  Well hobbies are suppose to be fun.  Something you enjoy doing.  I had no idea what I enjoyed doing.  I hadn't taken the time to figure that out.  I was busy.  School, work, work, school.  It would continue like that until I met my wife.  So busy doing something but, really I wasn't doing anything.

I got into woodworking by necessity.  We had become first time home owners and a few things needed to be done.  I wasn't about to pay someone to do it for me.  Yeah, you can call me cheap but that really wasn't what it was about.  It was my home, my castle.  It was my domain and I wasn't about to have somebody do what I viewed as my responsibility.  I had a wife and a child to care for and it was high time I shouldered some responsibility.  It was an instinct.  Perhaps some dormant genetic code that awoke.  I now call this the caveman instinct. Women have it too, they just express it differently.

The psychology of it is not hard to understand.  My family has a need.  I take on the project and meet that need.  I have now provided for my family and improved my skill set which helps meet the families next need.  It is a euphoric experience.  One that provides the drive to keep pushing myself and improving.  So, I suppose it is not surprising that other passions would arise out of that same caveman instinct.

Gardening, I have found is a great way to meet the families needs on the most basic of levels.  It is no secret that our food supply in America has become tainted.  Between genetically modified foods and the overuse of pesticides it is no wonder Americans are among the sickest in the world.  Of course that is only the tip of the iceberg and whether you agree with me or not you would be hard pressed to find someone that would say growing your own food is not a good thing.

Like many people our space for growing food is limited.  So recently I have started to look for ways to get more production out of the limited space that we do have.  I figure a vertical herb garden might be a good way to do that.


I went with dimensional lumber from my stack of scrap wood.  "Here he goes again with the scrap wood!" you say.  Well, it is a great way to get more bang for your project buck.  In fact the word has gotten out in my neighborhood.  If someone is throwing something out that is made of wood, I usually get a visit asking if I would like it.  I can't remember a time I said no.  If you are not doing the same thing you are letting some valuable resources go to waste.

In fact you wouldn't even need to use wood for a project like this.  I have seen them made out of PVC or even old gutter material.

Cut list:

Main legs
4 - 2x6's @ 52"
(NOTE: I cut a 15 degree angle in a piece of 2x6.  Then measure the 52" from the long angle of that cut.  The video shows this in chronological order.)

Back Slats
32 - 1x4's @ 21"  16 per box

20 - 1x2"s @ 5"

Leg braces
2 - 1x4's @ 19"
2 - 1x4's @ 32"
(NOTE: Cut these in the same fashion as the main legs)

20 - 1x4's @ 18"
(NOTE: This step is not depicted in the video as I felt it unnecessary.  Two 18" 1x4's make each shelf.  They are just laid on each cleat and the weight of the soil holds them in place.)

Final thoughts:

 The angle of the cleats can be whatever you want them to be.  The way I figured mine was to measure about 9.5" down from the short angled cut that was to be the top of the legs.  Then space the rest of the marks 8" apart thereafter.   Then from the long angled cut side I measured 11" from what would be the top of the leg and then every 8" thereafter.  This gave me an offset of 1.5" for the cleats.  You can view the video at 1:30 to see how I lined up the corners of the cleats to the marks.

In the video I state the marks are spaced 9.5" apart.  That is how I originally marked them but decided that was too far apart so I changed it to 8".  I did not realize my verbal mistake until it was too late.  However, it is worth noting that 9.5" does indeed work. I just deemed it more visually appealing at 8".

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask.  Don't forget to visit my Youtube channel.  You can like and subscribe if you have not already.  Also, you can find me on facebook and pinterest as well.

Until then,

Happy DIY'ing


DIY Wall Hanging Book Bin / Magazine rack

My wife and I home school our children.  Our main reason for choosing to do so was our belief that as parents, our children's education remains largely our responsibility.