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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #1 
It's finished. Just in time. I managed to take a few photos that probably will not all get posted tonight. I'm amazed at how good it looks in spite of all my mistakes.

I built mine from a southern yellow pine 1x10x8. Getting the patterns all to fit on the board without having a large knot or pith in the middle was a bit of a challenge. Sort of like putting a puzzle together. If you go this route be sure there is a place for everything. In hind site I think I might have been better off with a 1x12. Note that the head barely fits. Check the board edges closely. Mine was damaged in several places preventing thos locations from being used for the head.

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I started out cutting with a hand saw but the SYP beat me.

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I use the Peter Sellers saw wall to set up my cuts. It works great normally but not in this board.

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The legs are ready to go.

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I used 3m 77 to glue the patterns on because I knew they were going to get  some rough handling and I knew this would not come off.

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Rockers and the tail on this piece. I'm trying to avoid the pith as much as I can. The seam roller is my favourite tool for getting patterns to stick its made from hard wood, heavy steel and silicon mounted on ball bearings.

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Cutting out the leg on the band saw was fairly easy for the most part. The top of the arch was a bit of a problem.

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There was a small issue cutting around the corners of the seat with the blade I had installed. It was a bit tight.

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I had a problem getting enough clearence to work with the rockers so I roughed them out to get room and to make them lighter. The light is a bright LED in a magnet mount fixture that has a long cord plugged in to the ceiling. The cord is long enough to reach almost any where in my garage. I wanted plenty of light here because I didn't want to wander off the line cutting out the rockers. Mess this up and I;ll need to buy another 2x10.

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My first real snag. See the burn marks in the curve of the neck. The blade is to big for the curve. It's sure not going to go around the nose and mouth. Time for a blade change.


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All cut out. Stack it up tp see what it looks like. OK this thing is cute.

Changing the band saw blade to a smaller one helped but it still wasn't small enough. Note the sharp corners the band saw would not cut these. That's OK The belt sander will take care of that. Next time cut the head on the scroll saw.

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I stuck the rockers together with a few dabs of hot glue. You could also use two sided tape. The belt sander can now smooth out the saw cuts and make them as close to Identical as I'm going to get.

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Hand sanding on one of the legs. Taking care of the things I can't do with a power tool.

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Drilling dowels holes ion the seat.

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The backside. I only drill until the point comes through. The flip it over and use the tiny hole to align the bit. Drill slowly and you will get these little wheels along with a smooth entry and exit hole.

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Using a square and a pencil I brought the lines around to the other side so I could see where to put things.

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Dry fitting the leg. This clamping method worked prety good.

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Clamped everything up and drilled the holes in the legs with my Bosch drill. I'm not a real fan of drilling like this. Way to many things can go wrong but in this case I'm trying to follow the plans as written. If a clamp slips or the drill wobbles a little to much the dowel will not fit the hole.


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No matter how hard I tried I could not get the head to clamp straight and square. I can't have a crooked head.

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Drilling the holes for the handle and the eye.

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I used a router and a 1/8 inch radius round over bit to round over all the edges. It's much easier and neater then sanding them. It amazes me how this changes the look of it. 

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A change of plan. Once I got the glue on I could not pull the joint together. Quick before the glue drys pun in a lag bolt and that did the trick. Later I took it out and counter sunk the hole and put the bolt back in. It;s covered by the leg. I should have done this to start with. It would have saved me a lot of time. Later I decided that what I shoud have done was save the scraps from the head to use as a clamping caul. To late.


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Head glued square and straight.

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Flush cutting a dowel. I like to cut dowels log and cut them flush. The saw is cheap from Harbor Freight it works good if you do it right. It does a good job of cutting dowls to length too.

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Dowel after flush cut and sanding.

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Test fitting the rockers. I found this part difficult. Were I to build another horse I would do this different.

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I had to put it in the floor. Southern Yellow Pine (SYP) can be very hard. On the bench I could not get the drill to bite. I put it on the floor so I could apply some pressure. The clamps slipped on me twice. The second time I didn't notice until the drilling suddenly became very easy. The bottom of one of the legs blew out. At this point it's pretty much live with it or do the whole thing over. There is no time to do over so I'm living with it. No photo of the blow out. I was so disgusted with it that I didn't even think about a photo. Here it is all glued up.

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I'm using amber shellac for the finish. This is the first coat. If you look close you can see one of the miss drilled holes from the first time the clamp slipped.

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The other side. You can't see the messed up hole on this side because its on the bottom.

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The fourth Coat of shellac. I didn't have the right brushes to do this with and had a bit of trouble getting it on smooth. I spent a lot of time on the internet researching finishing with shellac and learned a lot. The correct brushes are ordered and next time it will be easier. Shellac dry very fast If I start on the bottom of the rockers by the time I get to the top of the seat the bottom was dry enough to put on the bench. It really changes the way you need to finish. You can't go slow. It will begin to dry and get sticky before you can get it spread out. A lot of new techniques to learn. I should have taken photos after every coat so you could see it change but I didn't think about it.

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And now the finished Toddlers Rocking Pony.

It looks way better than I expected it to.


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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #2 
What would I do different if I were to build another horse?

Bolt on the head from the get go. It made such a huge difference in getting the head on square I can't see not doing it.

Not use dowels. I don't like using dowels. There are issues with dowels that I just don't want to deal with. All of my leg cracked when the dowels were inserted. I drilled the holes deep enough so there was a tiny hole in the back of the leg for glue to squeeze out but they cracked anyway. Not bad. I didn't notice the cracks until I was putting on the second coat of shellac. Using the same design I could use carriage bolts. They are stronger, no glue to mess with unless you want to glue them. If you don't like seeing the exposed metal you can counter sink them and plug the holes.

Use some kind of joinery or fastener on the tail. It may stay on there just fine like it is but would prefer not to have a butt joint. Maybe a half lap.

A better method of drilling the holes. The seat to leg drilling worked OK. The head to seat was difficult to do and get it square. I finally got it but it must have taken me an hour. Getting the rocker to stay put while I drilled was very hard.  I have the capability to do horizontal drilling and I'm sure that with careful planning and layout I could get al the holes on the right place without going through the hassle of clamping and drilling.

The Southern Yellow Pine was a pain to work with. I would seriously look at using some other wood.






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IanPlant

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thank you for sharing BB [thumb]

You could possibly use a sliding dovetail to attach the tail

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john lewman

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Reply with quote  #4 
Thanks for sharing and taking so much time to create this post. This is a wonderful set of how-to's and it is a nice surprise for Christmas morning! The rocker is beautifully built and photographed. You make important observations and come up with solid solutions.

I built the first one of these out of white pine. Yellow pine is a lot more brittle and heavy than white pine and will split easier because of it. I used the wood dowel pins in the white with no cracking. I made the second one out of douglas fir and the pins caused no cracking in the fir. The white pine has a lot more give that the yellow pine plus I made sure that the dowels had just a little resistance when I pounded them into the holes. If the dowels are too tight they can split the wood.

The glue surface on the tail seems adequate for rough play if it is glued and clamped. A simple butt joint can be stronger than the wood itself when glued and clamped.

Your finished rocker is really beautiful in natural wood with the clear finish. This is truly an heirloom. I see your old Shopsmith band saw in the photo. I have one exactly like it!





BadBob

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Reply with quote  #5 
John, the butt joint on the tail Is surely strong enough. I just don't care for them. I used the Southern Yellow Pine because it was all I could get. In my location the stores only had SYP in any thing larger than a 2x6. I had trouble finding one of those I thought was use able for the project. You can't see it in the photos but the back side was pretty rough. The belt sander got a real workout.


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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #6 
IanPlant, I like the sliding dove tail idea.


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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #7 
The 3M 77 adhesive did its job very well. I never came loose. However, getting it off was a pain. It came off very easy with mineral spirits except where the tape was.  Then there is the smell, mess and solvent soaked paper to deal with. Then I didn't have time to wait for the solvent to dry, Most of the pieces I sanded the patterns off. This wasn't easy. The adhesive clogged the sanding belt pretty fast. The bits of tape were worse than the adhesive.
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john lewman

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Reply with quote  #8 
I like to use blue painter's masking tape as the first thing that I apply onto the wood before I apply the pattern. The blue tape adheres very well, is easy to remove and adds a lubricating factor for the saw blade while cutting, keeping the blade smooth and cooler. I press the blue tape down tightly, then use Scott's 3M permanent adhesive to appy the pattern. The perm adhesive keeps the pattern from lifting while sawing. When the sawing is completed, the blue tape with the pattern glued to it pulls off without any residue. 

There is also a spray adhesive that is removeable. I haven't found one that works perfectly but the ones at Hobby Lobby work pretty well and you do not need to use mineral spirits to remove them. If you burnish the pattern down onto the wood thoroughly, the removable sprays work OK. I prefer the blue painter's tape/permanent spray adhesive. It takes longer to prepare the pattern on the wood but only by just minutes. You make up the extra time by how quick it is to remove the tape and pattern when you are finished sawing. 

It is a good idea to use the 2" wide blue tape if it is available. Otherwise the standard width tape works fine.
IanPlant

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Reply with quote  #9 
I use 2" wide masking tape on the wood the use a glue stick to apply my patterns. The only problem i had was when i just used the glue stick to apply the pattern but couldn't get to cutting it out for a couple of day it stuck solid
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BadBob

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Reply with quote  #10 
I use lots of blue tape for various things including scroll sawing. I didn't use it for this project for several reasons. I was not convinced that it would stay on. The wood was quite resinous and very rough. It would have been better if it had been planed smooth first. I knew I was going to use the belt sanders. If its not stuck down tight the belt sander will lift the edge and once its lifted the dust gets in there and you not getting it back down. Unlike a scroll saw or band saw where you are cutting down through the paper pattern you will be sanding from both directions. 


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anzerka

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Reply with quote  #11 
And you can get the drawing
Thanks in advance
cynthia lewman

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Reply with quote  #12 
You can get the plan set here: Baby Rocking Pony + Toddler Rocking Pony
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