A Modern Foot Stove

As you all probably know by now, it can be pretty cold on the lonesome hill here in Central Portugal. And although we have the modern comfort of electricity and internet, a lot of things still happen here as it did hundreds of years ago like warming the house with a wood stove. When it's really cold that burner is on all day, choking up dozens of logs in a day. But on the just chilly day's that makes no sence, wood doesn't come for free, and if it does it takes a lot of work to get it cut to size, stacked and dried. That's the reason to use it sensible and make sure you don't burn all before winter is gone. Still if you want to sit comfortably on the kitchen table some sort of warmth is highly welcome.

In the old day's, going back for centuries, people used little foot-stoves that were filled with hot coals. These foot-warmers helped to make you feel comfortable if you sat in a chair. Foot warmers are visible on 16th and 17th century paintings, but they could be completely hidden under a long skirt or cloak. After 10 years of using a blanket or wearing snow boots while sitting on the kitchen table, I think it's time to make my lovely wife a modern version.

For years now she uses a little fruit box underneath her feet to compensate the height of the kitchen chairs and so I will use that box to measure the size. Now we are originally from the Netherlands, and the typically Dutch foot stove was a wooden box with holes in the top and an earthenware or metal pot holding glowing coals inside. These foot stoves were also common in northern Germany. A stone slab was an alternative to the wooden top with holes.

These days, in the century of USB charged gadgets, there are very handy heat cushions for sale and I found one for just 6,95 at a local supermarket. The challenge was to make a box that fit's with our "Amsterdam School" furniture and has enough room to hold that cushion. The materials used were reclaimed oak, beech and mahogany, plywood for the bottom, some bamboo and beech dowels, aluminium foil from chocolate bars and the whole project was finished with wax.

The whole project was glued, and the dowels are to support the pressure on the legs. No nails or screws were used.



And here's a video on the making of the foot stove.


A 1950's "fake" microphone for a wooden statue

Yes, a simple little project this time. A Dutch friend found a few wooden statues of musicians and a microphone was missing. It's just my own simplified interpretation of a 1950's model. Made in meranti, the cast-aluminium look was made with Zinc-spray and Nilzone, finished with a few coats of opaque lacquer..


Making a Garden bench part 3

The arm rests were made flat with the "mean machine", that's a lot faster process than using the router. One coat of Nilzone and 3 coats of lacquer should be enough to be protected against the few rainy days in the Portugese summer. 

The armrest are mounted with magnetic clips and easy removable. 

And the good news is that the bench is approved by the whole family!


Another project finished...

Another project done.. making crooked fronts with square doors in openings that aren't square...

It's an advantage to have some hand planes, sharp chisels and the time to adjust and adjust again and... well you get the picture. Although the floor is 3 cm. of level on a with of 140cm, the walls are 2 or 3 percent out of dead-vertical, in the end it looks like nothing is wrong! 


Selling small items on Ebay...

Yes, finally there are some items listed on Ebay. We need to find means to get some funds for the everlasting low budget. We are starting with Pen Blanks out of recycled / reclaimed wood, but soon there will be special ones from the native wood species from our vicinity as cork-oak, amendoa (almond), Eucalyptus and olive wood. The items are in the side-bar Ebay gadget.

2x oak 1x mogno
1x oak 1x beech x1 mogno

1x mogno 1x beech 1x oak
We do have some "one time" acrylic specials as we do not use them in the workshop ourselves.


Making a garden bench (part 2)

Now the slab is reasonably flat on one site it is time for routing out the cross-connections over the split of the eucalyptus seat. They will be filled with some almond wood strips and visible beech dowels..

Meanwhile I'm trying to make the first video of 2017 for the #notjustsawdust YouTube channel.

Time to saw some strips for the crossbars... And get a new router bit, this eucalyptus is pretty hard!


Making a Garden bench (part 1)

It's been laying outside for almost one and a half year now, this Eucalyptus tree, cut in to four slabs. The two outer ones will at some point be used for some stools or little tables, one is so "turned" that I will have to cut it up in short pieces, but...

this one seems pretty straight. It is very wobbly, because it was just cut with a chainsaw while the last part of the tree was still standing. Using a hand or electric plane to get it flat is no option in this stage, so.. the first action is to flatten one of the sides with a router.

The slab was about 12 cm thick, now the first side is flat (more or less) there's about 9 cm left.
Time to take a nr.5 and start using some muscles. The dark space on the right is what's left under the height of the router jig, it's also the part that has to be rounded, to make it more comfortable to sit on.

It took some time, but the treatment with a hand plane seems to do the job. The split at the end will stay, it will be a creative feature on the seat of this garden bench to be...


Less of all the bad we saw and more sawdust!

Now don't take this to seriously! Yes, the twin-brother is back.
Wishing you a happy new year with less of all the bad we saw and more sawdust!