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Thread: Stolen Birdhouse Idea

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Stolen Birdhouse Idea

    With apologies to Curt Fuller, I had to try turning a birdhouse. (We'll just say a little birdie showed me the pics of Curt's birdhouse on SMC. I'm not able to view pics there, but ve haf our vays of getting ze information.)

    Red eucalyptus, about 18" tall and 10" around. The bottom has a friction fit tenon, so it's removable for cleaning. I've got a few coats of BLO on it (including one right before taking this pic), and once that cures I'll probably use something like Thompson's Water Seal (another Curt Fuller idea I'm stealing.) I also still need to add the hanging loop at the top. I turned it wet, and fully expect it to crack like a sun of a gun by the time it dries. Then it'll be "art".

    I turned it to rough shape on a faceplate and live center, then used the steady rest to support the end while I hollowed it out. Then I turned a tenon above the ball and also the base plate (with another chuck-sized tenon) from the waste material attached to the faceplate. Once it was parted off the faceplate, I put the plug in the bottom and had tenons on both ends, so I could switch it around between the chuck and the live center in the tailstock as needed for the final shaping. In hindsight, I would have liked the ball end to be smaller, but this thing's heavy, and I didn't want to get the spire too thin.

    Not as nice as Curt's, but it was a lot of fun, and LOML really likes it.

    Attachment 6366

    Aside from the fact that I'm a idea-stealin' dog, whaddaya think?
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  2. #2
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    Vaughn it is awesome. I like it a lot. Now I am going to steal your idea that you stole from Curt. Nice job.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: Thats when you return from work one day
    and say, Hi, Honey, Im home forever.

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Bernie Weishapl View Post
    Vaughn it is awesome. I like it a lot. Now I am going to steal your idea that you stole from Curt. Nice job.
    Dont have a lathe

    So I'll steal Bernie's & Curt's Birdhouses, then I'll have two

    WoodWorking, Crappie Fishing, Colts, Life is good!

  4. #4
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    Hey Vaughn, there's probably not many things that make a guy feel better than having someone like what you did enough to do it themselves. That's a beauty and that red eucalyptus you keep showing off is some beautiful wood.

    I tried yesterday afternoon to turn another birdhouse and blew two of them up. I guess my first was beginners luck. I'd like to make another to hang on the display stand I'm building for the birdhouse contest I'm entering but maybe it just ain't meant to be.

  5. #5
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    s. Barrington,IL.
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    Smile

    Vaughan thats outstanding and thanks for the explanation.I have maple logs here now I'm going to have to try it. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Ken

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    810
    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn McMillan View Post
    ..... Not as nice as Curt's, but it was a lot of fun, and LOML really likes it.

    Aside from the fact that I'm a idea-stealin' dog, whaddaya think?
    Vaughn,

    I think it looks great. I showed it to my sweetheart and she (a great lover of "art deco" birdhouses) thought it was pretty nice also. Everytime I see something like this my search for a good used lathe gets just a bit more motivated. I'd love to try my hand at learning how to do this sort of work.

    Question though .... my sweetheart and I watched a show on TV last week which showed a guy cutting threads into hardwood. Any thought that your next birdhouse will go together with threads ... ?

    cheers

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all the kind words, everybody.
    Quote Originally Posted by John Bartley View Post
    ...
    Question though .... my sweetheart and I watched a show on TV last week which showed a guy cutting threads into hardwood. Any thought that your next birdhouse will go together with threads ... ?

    cheers
    Threads would likely work, and you could even make the top and bottom pieces separately. But (and it's a big "but"), you'd have to be turning dry wood, not wet like I did. If you turn threads in wet wood, they'd more than likely change size and warp while drying. Turning something like this with dry wood would be a lot more work, and it'd be hard to find a fully dried log that's not cracked beyond hope.

    I also should warn you...if you're looking at the turning forums thinking "hmm, maybe that'd be fun to try", then you're already showing early signs of latherization. You should seek professional help. I had the same symptoms about a year ago...I was enjoying looking at other peoples' work, so I went and bought a little mini lathe. (Just a little taste...I won't get hooked...yeah right.) Another lathe and a lot of other tools later, I'm fully hooked.

    Thanks again guys -
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Bernie Weishapl View Post
    Vaughn it is awesome. I like it a lot. Now I am going to steal your idea that you stole from Curt. Nice job.
    Sorry, I beat you to it, Its done been stole....

    Of course a tutoral would make the duplication a bit easier for those not as skilled at stealing ideas. How do you keep the bottom attached and hang from the top knot?

    Thanks for the picture and post

  9. #9
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    I meant to post on this before, but fogot....

    Nice job, I saw some in a recent magazine and they were all about 3 feet tall, very cool looking (yeah, dry wood) they were turned in three pieces.

    Put this one on my list of things to do.............
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Vaughn, I finally finished mine. I ended up with 3 coats of Thompson Water Seal with 3 coats Helmsman Spar varnish. Both are supposed to protect against water and sun. It's supposed to hang outside from Earth Day until Labor Day so I'll see how it holds up.

    In past years this birdhouse contest has some pretty bizarre entries made from about every imaginable material. It ought to be interesting.

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