Saturday, June 20, 2015

Make a Groovy Rotating Sticker Display!

My woodworker sticker collection has been growing like a weed, so I made a Rotating Sticker Display for them using a disco mirror ball motor.  Watch my video to see how groovy it is!

This is a pretty simple project.  I cut four panels from 1/4" plywood that are about 5.75"x36".  I used the lightest plywood I could find.  I rounded over the sharp corners using a washer to draw the curve.


I made three blocks with grooves on all four sides and used these to glue together the plywood panels into a column.  I used hot glue since it dries quickly and is strong enough for this application.  I was careful to make sure the ends of the panels were even with each other.


I mounted this 1-RPM Disco Mirror Ball Motor to the bottom of my wire shelving with zip ties.  I drilled two holes in the top of the display and used wire to hang it from the motor.


This project turned out great and is a good addition to my shop.  It's great for displaying all of my stickers in one place, and it does a fine job at promoting my friends' YouTube channels in the background of my videos!  Thanks for checking out this project!


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Guitar Clock X-Carve CNC Project and Fold-Up Workstation Update

When Inventables offered to send me a large X-Carve CNC Machine, my first thought was “Where am I going to put it?”  Check out this video to see how I solved my space issue with a Fold-Up Workstation, plus watch the X-Carve make a rockin’ Guitar Clock!

The 1000mm X-Carve has a footprint of 45” x 42”, so it fits comfortably on my 48” x 48” fold-up workstation.  It folds up nicely...check this out!


This CNC kit was much easier to assemble than the Shapeoko2 kit, since it has fewer parts and self-tapping screws.  The X-Carve has a sleek look and it works great; however, I think the wiring connections at the power supply could be better organized to improve the look and prevent damage.  Also note that the limit switches are delicate, so handle them carefully so you don't break one like I did.


I mounted the X-Carve to the table with wooden hold-down blocks.  I made these super-strong and secure because I don’t want the machine falling to the floor.  When the machine is not in use, I can fold it up and out of the way to free up floor space.  I will usually keep the machine folded down and ready to run, but it’s nice to have the option to fold it up if the need arises.

To test the X-Carve, I created a simple Guitar Clock project in Inventables' free EASEL design tool.  This project requires the CNC to cut a recess for a clock insert, plus make a through-cut with tabs for the guitar shape.  The overall size of the clock is 5” wide, 6.6” tall, and .75” thick.  The Clock Shoppe Insert that I purchased requires a recess that is .6” deep and 2.375” wide.

I am really pleased with the performance of the X-Carve on this project.  I pushed the limit with the depth of cut, so it did require some light sanding.  This Guitar Clock was cut from curly maple and the Danish Oil finish really highlights the beautiful figure in this wood.  I will be posting some of these clocks for sale on my Etsy Store, so if you would like to support what I do, please consider purchasing one of my featured items.

If you have a CNC machine, I have shared this Guitar Clock Easel Project (you may need to create an Inventables account to access it).  If you have a scrollsaw or bandsaw, download this Guitar Clock PDF Template.  To make sure the clock will fit, buy the clock and measure it before you cut the recess.


Thanks to Inventables for sending me this awesome machine!  If you are interested in more information about the X-Carve, visit Inventables.com.  They have an excellent User’s Forum and a nice Project Library.  Look out for more CNC projects coming soon from The Carmichael Workshop!