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1929 Trench build Tutukaka NZ

Started by Oor Wullie, Apr 06, 2022, 09:36 pm

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That's one of the fun parts of these builds--seeing how different people address the same issue:  Building a big blue box with a light on top. 
"My dear Litefoot, I've got a lantern and a pair of waders, and possibly the most fearsome piece of hand artillery in all England. What could possibly go wrong?"
-The Doctor.

Oor Wullie

Oct 21, 2022, 03:27 am #121 Last Edit: Oct 21, 2022, 03:31 am by Oor Wullie
Another good run on the saws today. Got the square of ply cut by plunge saw for the under-dome lamp cap. Still to jigsaw and sand to a circle and cut the center by hole saw.

The plunge saw was very handy to shave a mm or two off the column tops and bottoms to make both legs of the angle perfectly matched for seating on the floor below and to take the column trim pieces at the top. Really happy with that.

Then I ripped my floor joist to height and ripped both sides of each of 10 floorboards to get a clean tidy fit with no raggy edges on the palings. Both by table saw. Might take a mm off one tomorrow as it's a real snug fit. I want to sand the boards too.

I intended on getting into ripping my door and wall mullions and the step trim but need to do some scale drawings to see how they best fit each other and the column edges.

Happy enough.


Oor Wullie

Oct 22, 2022, 08:49 am #122 Last Edit: Oct 22, 2022, 08:51 am by Oor Wullie
Quick update. Rained in the morning so I took advantage of the softened clay to further prep the site for the paved path coming up to the front doors, plus I re-leveled that new base brick-paver layout. Digging is harder than one would think.

Then I spent hours today deciding what thickness ply to use for the three-stepped awning (I call it). 7mm x 3 = 21, which takes its outer edge to the flute in-turn in the column corner, so is perfect. I'll have to buy some since I only have spare 9 and 19 mm.It means jointing the top of the wall mullions to overlay the first two layers and sit flush with the third. Yes my mullion wood is 20mm thick, not the actual 25mm of Met boxes, but that's what I have and it works to meet the awning.

There is A LOT MORE psychobabble that goes with these decisions and I know some would actually understand it all, I know it's on the obsessed side of thinking so I'll keep it to meself.

Oor Wullie

Oct 25, 2022, 06:55 am #123 Last Edit: Oct 25, 2022, 06:57 am by Oor Wullie
Some shopping done the other day. Got that 7mm ply for the three stepped awning, a variable speed belt sander to get the columns looking smart and to sand the face of palings I'm using for flooring and the mullion stock. Also got a step drill bit since I read it's best for drilling acrylic without cracking it.

Today I started getting the quarter round trim into my column rabbet joint, glue and finishing nails worked well. I cut the 24x24 square moulding to inset the rabbets where the sign boxes go. Since my sign box height is 180 mm rather than the plan's 155 mm, I lose 25 mm of the 45 mm of the columns above the boxes, leaving only 20 mm of column above plus the added column top trim.

As I'm aiming for weatherproofing wherever I can, I'm extending the square moulding to the top of the column rather than cutting a 20 mm piece of quarter round. It won't be that visible from the ground and will offer far more rainproof.

I'm also looking to get some single bevelled moulding for where the top of the sign box meets roof tier 1. The width is 40mm so slides water coming off the roof almost to a point outside the 45 mm column thickness. Hopefully the wind will take the rain the extra 50 mm off the top of the signbox. Pooling damage there has always been a predictable concern and this trim will help and, again, won't be visible from the ground.

More trim work and sanding tomorrow. Had to keep the dog and my main squeeze happy today with a big walk, rather than getting work done. Idris is seen as the other woman!



Oor Wullie

Columns done bar the sanding. Not worth creating a lot of sawdust today, so I'll do that on the same day as cutting the mullions and awning steps. Probably tomorrow.

But feels good to have another major component done being constructed. Sanding and painting isn't as glamorous.




Oor Wullie

Oct 27, 2022, 05:17 am #125 Last Edit: Oct 27, 2022, 05:24 am by Oor Wullie
Excellent day's work. Sanded the mullion boards and cut them out except for the end insets which fit over the awning steps. Pays to do a full sized drawing to get the saw distances to get the angles cut on the mullion edges. I just measure off the drawing.

Cut my over-door crosspiece to size.

Cut the awning steps. I'm going to glue them, screw from behind and then glue the assembly and screw it to the walls from the inside. Trying to avoid externally visible screws.

Next day's work will see the awnings and mullions on the walls and doors and the columns sanded and the hinge strips screwed on the inside of the front columns.  This should make things more rigid. The hinge strips are a convenient offcut of something or other, probably wood trimmed off 190 mm column wood to take it to 170. As I make waste wood, I start having plans to use it.

Photos once things come together in the next few days. Trimmed one floorboard to ease the tight fit as well today.

Andrew Harvey

I like that; making plans for the waste wood. Very right and proper. I am always loath to throw anything like that away, off cuts and so on, you never know when they will come in handy! Your box, judging by the pictures you have been putting up, really is leaping into shape.
  ( Incidentally, I found that plant we spoke of before, but I have failed to identify it yet! Too busy with fungi which at present are all over the place in this hemisphere! I will get on to it....)


Oor Wullie

Oct 27, 2022, 07:35 pm #127 Last Edit: Oct 27, 2022, 07:54 pm by Oor Wullie
Andrew - The tree is Salix elaeagnus or bitter willow, an exotic invasive here in NZ, but a beautiful tree and I've seen no sign of spread.

I'm thinking about what to plant around the edges of my base blocks and in the path edges. I've seen some really otherworldly succulents which will survive droughty summers. I really want the setting to appear as being off earth.  But it will eventually become the I. M. Foreman junkyard, no doubt.

Oor Wullie

When I have a design issue, I look at dozens of photos of the props and other people's builds. My shortened column rise above the 25 mm extra height of the sign boxes offers two solutions I've had issue with.

I wanted to fully cap the columns to prevent rain from oozing into the cracks between the two boards of the column or down the moulding infill of the rabbet joints. I also want more column height.

Just saw a photo of someone's box which has a wooden plate at the top of the columns. It's slightly larger as a drip flashing of sorts.

There's my solution. A plate which gives me my rise back which also flashes off the rain. The column trim can sit on top and my roof tier 1 has it's surround bracing back. Gold!

I also reflected on today's work and realised that the door hinge strips can only come up to where the above-door awning strip crosses the inside of the columns. Pays to be a dreamer before you cut, glue and screw

Andrew Harvey

Quote from: Oor Wullie on Oct 27, 2022, 07:35 pmAndrew - The tree is Salix elaeagnus or bitter willow, an exotic invasive here in NZ, but a beautiful tree and I've seen no sign of spread.

I'm thinking about what to plant around the edges of my base blocks and in the path edges. I've seen some really otherworldly succulents which will survive droughty summers. I really want the setting to appear as being off earth.  But it will eventually become the I. M. Foreman junkyard, no doubt.

 Well bless my beard! A willow indeed! I had found a tree (a succulent) which I thought looked much like your willow, but as you know had not got around to identifying it. It looks nothing like the Salix elaeagnus at all! So thank you for clearing that little mystery up for me! A native to Europe of all things and now invading the Antipodes! ( Like so many other things!)
  I am sure you will find some superb other worldly plants to surround your Police Box. I am watching your thread with great interest!
  Thanks again,

Oor Wullie

Oct 28, 2022, 01:19 am #130 Last Edit: Oct 28, 2022, 01:21 am by Oor Wullie
We're getting a tropical storm by tomorrow night and the wind has picked up already, so I've stowed parts that might get blown about.

But I did finish the stepped awnings  (I went with a 40, 20, 20 mm step down. It pleases my eye over the weird measurements of the plan of 32, 30, 18 mm) and cut the door mullion to length and to an angle at the top to meet the lower awning step. Then I attached the mullion to the left door.

I might start hand cutting the wall mullion tops to allow then to overlap the two bottom awning steps, unlike the door, which has no overlap of the awning. Plus I'll cut the two hinge strips to length but won't attach them until I sand the column faces since they wouldn't allow me to use my sawhorse vices.

Too windy to muck around with getting the awnings on the walls. Calm day required for big sheet movement. Hopefully the wind will settle after the front passes but I doubt it.

Woke with a low body battery so I'm pleased with the work done, even if I go no further. Might watch some first Doctor episodes after seeing Chesterton on the special.




Oor Wullie

Oct 29, 2022, 01:36 am #131 Last Edit: Oct 29, 2022, 02:23 am by Oor Wullie
Never trust yourself! Spent the morning hand cutting the joints for the wall mullions to overlap the steps.

Towards the end, I started wondering why the test bits of ply weren't fitting well. Tried one of the stepped awnings against the cut and found I'd used a 9mm template for cutting the slices, plus the cerf of the saw instead of 7 mm needed. Yikes!

Lucky the mullions are longer than the walls and haven't been trimmed yet.

Without a band saw, this type of trim is not worth losing sleep over. I'll just angle the tops like I did with the door mullion and call it a day.

Good exercise in futility.
Just had an idea. I could cut into the awning and slot the mullion in. Except the mullion has two bevelled sides. Better sleep on it. Still tricky.

Oor Wullie

Oct 29, 2022, 07:25 pm #132 Last Edit: Oct 29, 2022, 07:29 pm by Oor Wullie
Big storm today, so unlikely to do much work. Had the crazy notion of trying the mullion joints again using the table saw to cut the 20 and 40 mm slice cuts. Quicker and more accurate than the hand saw but a bit dangerous holding a long piece in the air to notch the end. But I'd need the saw out in the open air to get the piece height through. Curse the rain gods.

The main caution is not getting kickback, whipping my hand into the blade as the piece flies back at 100 mph. I doubt it will happen.

Another technique is multiple cross cuts on the drop saw, cracking off the ribs and using a chisel to finish. My drop saw's depth setting is not trustworthy but I have used it like this to joint my window mullions and muntins. I'll give this a go before the crazy table saw option. Drop saws are very safe. And that I can do under cover from the rain.

Maybe do some hole saw cuts on the lamp pieces if the mullions go well. Also have to rabbet the window frames.

These fiddly bits, mullion joints, window frames and lamp aren't hard, but the accuracy requires thinking.

Oor Wullie

After an abject failure attempting to hand-cut the joints which attach the wall mullions to the stepped awning, I decided to GET JIGGY WIT IT and slapped together a table saw jig which allowed close to the fence end cuts on the ends of the 2 m mullions. Clamping them on to the jig, it worked to precision perfection and I'm still alive. Attempting this cut on the saw with no jig and just hand and eye will lose your hand and eye.

I'm in woodworking heaven. Finished the wee cross cuts by hand, eye and trim saw.

Wax the inside and bottom of the jig for some slide.






Andrew Harvey