Woodworking Project Update


bench-dreams

Not my bench but I hope it will be someday soon…

Well, It’s been a busy¬†few months so I haven’t had much time to post updates but I have some new, interesting things in the works that I wanted to share with you.

It’s been a full year since I built my first Corn Hole set. In that time, I have learned so much about basic wood working. I have had several challenges to overcome and with them some heartbreak, lots of practice of my colorful vernacular, and some surprising wins! I have built just over 60 sets which works out to:

  • over 18 sheets of plywood quartered
  • 120+ 6″ holes cut
  • 240+ rails, stiles and legs cut
  • 1680+ brad nails
  • 240+ Carriage bolts, washers, and wing-nuts
  • 4, 1/4″ rounder-over router bits
  • 3 leg hole jigs
  • 2 hole saws* 3 drills
  • 2 RO Sanders
  • 1 Belt sander
  • An obscene about of sanding disks (80, 150, 220 grit)

Since Corn Hole sets are a very basic carcass to build, I was able to experiment with different tools and techniques to improve the quality of the product and to reduce the amount of effort to build each set. I discovered that when you compromise quality for speed, you end up paying for sooner or later.

My shop motto: Slow is fast. Fast is slow, and painful, and costly, and dangerous! I learned this when I was rushing to get the roundover on a couple sets before the rain came in. I got halfway around the the first deck when the router bit shot off at 100 MPH to embed itself in a bookcase. In my hurry, I failed to tighten the bit and rather quickly, the bit went to be with Jesus. I think about that and I could have easily joined it on that trip to the heavens or, more likely, been seriously injured.

Being self-taught, I have had a couple other minor incidents but only one requiring a trip the the clinic and that was only to make sure I was up-to-date on my tetanus shot (I just said tet-anus). But I like to think that instead of just being slow, that I am being deliberate and thoughtful. Taking this approach, I have not had any more accidents and my mistakes have diminished to level that I can blame those on the wood or the tool. ūüėČ

Also, because of some personal events, I am not able to get into my shop until after my boys are asleep. This has vexed me considerably until I simply adopted a more focused, hand tool woodworking approach. More out of necessity, I have come to find a simple joy in working with wood and hand tools.

NOTE: Since my drill, impact driver, brad nailer, and circ saw don’t have a cord, they are considered hand tools ūüėČ

This change has really fired up my passion for woodworking to another level. I not getting into the holy war of power vs. hand tool woodworkers. I don’t care about all that. I have a Dewalt planer and a thumb-stealing table saw, a router, etc. Power tools are cool. I use them when I have to get stuff done. However, when I need my therapy, I can either drink a bottle of rum or wander out into my shop and do some woodworking by hand. Both satisfy my need to forget the world for a time, but the benefits from woodworking outlast the rum.

With my new-found enthusiasm for wood working, I have lined up a whole host of new projects: Here are just some of them:

  • Build an updated work bench (more Roubo-styled — ¬†see image above)
  • Build a Sawyer’s bench (Sawing by hand is a bitch without a way to hold your work) – ¬†inspired by Tom Fidgen
  • Updated Twin Screw Vise (More for joinery but this project is my white whale)
  • Make and use a Frame Saw – Resawing by hand just facinates me
  • Make and use a Bow Saw – i have seen some amazing things with these smaller saws and I want to see what I can make and make happen with them
  • Hand Planes Extraviganza! – I recently bought Scott Meaks’ DVD on making a hand plane. It’s every bit as good as attending a class and I will dive into many of the details as I plunge into these builds. Also, I’m looking into making router planes, shoulder planes, Scratch Stocks, Rabbet Planes, Kerfing Planes, Air Planes, whatever it takes to scratch the itch
  • Making Back Saws – As with many aspects of woodworking, making, sharpening, tuning and storing back saws is its own rabbit hole. I really want to explore more of this…

As you can see, building tools and appliances is really my wheelhouse since this is pretty much what I have done for the past 20 years, only with software. The tactile interaction with wood is so therapeutic for me and I appreciate every moment that I have in the shop.

Before I go, I just wanted to acknowledge a couple of people that have helped keep me motivated and inspired:

  • Shannon Rogers
  • Christopher Schwarz
  • Tom Fidgen
  • Scott Meeks
  • Marc Spagnuolo

and last by certainly not least…

  • Roy Underhill

(There are so many others and I will thank them when I get to projects especially inspired by them) 

Thank you gentlemen for providing your knowledge, insight, and perspective to this endeavor.
For those looking for more BeagleBone Black post, I hope to be working on some robotic/electronic/music -related projects with my oldest son, and anything related in that realm, I will certainly post ASAP.

Happy Thanksgiving 2014


turkey is good

Happy Thanksgiving!

I want to say Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends, family, readers and visitors.  I really enjoy having this blog and sharing what I have done and what I am planning to do.  I appreciate all the encouragement, feedback, and dialog that this forum has generated.

I hate apologizing for not blogging more regularly.  However, I feel like I should since I have had so many kind words about my articles on the BeagleBone Black (BBB) and my increasing interest in woodworking.  So, to all of you, thank you.

Over the past year, I have been as busy as ever and it is only just starting to calm down but as soon as I say that, I am sure that it will wind right back up again. ¬†In October 2013, I was asked to assume the team lead and system engineering responsibilities for one of my company’s web sites. ¬†We use Adobe CQ/AEM for our CMS solution, running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. ¬†When I was first asked to start building components for the CMS a few years ago, my experience centered around Microsoft technologies and this made for a “K-2”-like learning curve. ¬†One of my decisions was to fully immerse myself and this is why I “burned the ship” by installing Linux on my workstation. ¬†This forced me to figure out how to work out the mechanics in this new environment and it has been a fun, frustrating, exciting and very rewarding experience.

Without that, I would never have dove as deep with the BBB and plan to continue projects with it.

This year, my wife and I stubbled, quite literally, into a what may become a business endeavor. ¬†While chatting with some neighbors on our community’s Facebook group, someone asked if anyone had or could make a Corn Hole set. ¬†My wife said that I could build a set and then informed me. ¬†By the way, I had never built a set before. ¬†That was March and since then, I have built over 50 sets for friends, family, and neighbors. ¬†It has been great for me because I had just finished building a work bench and was slowly working on some other projects but I really didn’t have any direction. ¬†Building Corn Hole sets has really forced me to focus on the basics and the details of woodworking. ¬†They are easy to build but take technique to build flat and straight, especially when building from box store lumber. ¬†I have acquired good tools, experience, and confidence to begin building more complex projects. ¬†I hope to share many of them with you.

I am what some would call a “changing imager.” ¬†This is a type of person that can plan and start many projects but may take a while to finish. ¬†I also have many different types of interests including audio engineering, guitar building, electronics, programming, general computers, and building and making things. ¬†I try not to blog multi-part articles anymore because I may not finish them for a while or at all and I drives me crazy to get half-way through someone’s walk-through on something to find out that it was never finished. ¬†Since I discovered Breaking Bad only on it’s final season, I waited until it was over before starting it on Netflix. ¬†So, I just don’t want to do that to you.

If you have ideas for projects, please let me know. ¬†I will try to share with you what I am doing on a more regular basis so you don’t feel like I have abandoned this blog. ¬†To start off, I started listening to podcasts on the way to and from work. ¬†Mostly woodworking but some guitar and generalized subjects. ¬†Right now, my favorite is Fine Woodworking’s Shop Talk Live (iTunes & i-heart-radio). ¬†It runs about an hour (the length of my commute) and the guys are funny, knowledgable, and down-to-earth. ¬†It’s NOT a Festool commercial, so if you’re a woodworker, check it out.

I will probably put up some more articles on what I am up to so check back. ¬†If you don’t hear from me, drop me a line. ¬†I get distracted trying to keep my boys from burning down the house and keeping up with my Corn Hole orders but I will try to respond it a timely fashion.

Thanks for listening.  I look forward to getting back here.

PS. ¬†Here is a couple if pictures of what I’ve been up to. ¬†Building Corn Hole boards and finally getting my Dust Deputy cyclone working.

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Linux : Mounting A Remote Network Folder Locally


SSHFS and FUSE To Mount Remote Network Resources

UPDATE (2014.04.09): I may have been premature with the startup script mentioned below. ¬†This doesn’t seem to work. ¬†I am assuming the failure is because my profile isn’t loaded at the time the script is run or my account isn’t allowed to to run scripts using @reboot in a cron config. ¬†Whatever the case, I have found a configuration that works. ¬†I put the startup script call in my ~/.bashrc file and it works as intended. ¬†Here’s the line I added after my environmental declarations (near the bottom):

~/startup.sh

Everything else worked pretty well.  I am getting the following message when I open a terminal and I will need to do more research as to how to resolve this:

fuse: mountpoint is not empty
fuse: if you are sure this is safe, use the 'nonempty' mount option

</UPDATE> At work, I have a network homedrive for my Linux systems that I only have access network-drive-connectedto once logged into one of my systems. ¬†Once I am in one system, it’s easy for me to move scripts and files around but I have always struggled with the overt disconnection between my local workstation andy my network. ¬†My requirements were straightforward: Easy to configure locally, no network/remote configuration required,¬†maintains solid security, and scriptable. Today, I made a push to get some level of resolution to this issue and I was finally successful using sshfs and FUSE. ¬†While not strictly work related, this will be a huge improvement for my BeagleBone Black projects as well. ¬†It was much easier than I thought it would be. ¬†Let’s say I want to mount the¬†remote home drive from my BeagleBone (hostname: ‘trisket’, user: ‘dave’). NOTE: These instructions assume Ubuntu, but I’m sure the process is the same for other distros

1. Install (if it’s not already installed) ‘sshfs’ on my client

sudo apt-get install sshfs

2. Verify that my user account is in the fuse group.

groups dave

which returns:

dave adm dialout cdrom sudo dip plugdev fuse lpadmin sambashare

If not, add user:

sudo adduser dave fuse

3. ¬†Verify ownership of /dev/fuse and make sure it’s root:fuse. ¬†This is important!

ls -la /dev/fuse

yielded:

crw-rw---- 1 root root 10, 229 Apr  3 09:12 /dev/fuse

I fixed this with:

sudo chown root:fuse /dev/fuse

4.  Create a mount point:  (I wanted this in my home folder)

mkdir ~/bbb

5: Mount the remote resource:  sshfs remoteuser@remotehost:/remote/resource /local/resource

sshfs dave@trisket:/home/dave ~/bbb

Success! ¬†Now I¬†have the remote BBB home folder mounted on my local workstation. This worked amazingly well and it was very easy to to add others. ¬†In retrospect, I think I will centralize the mount points that I bind to much like the mount folder. ¬†I am keeping these separate from /media or /mnt for my own sanity. Finally, a quick word on persistence. ¬†After I mounted the drive, I logged out and back in and the mount was still there. ¬†However, after a reboot, it disappeared. ¬†So, as I have mentioned in previous posts for my BeagleBone Black initial configuration, I created a startup script that runs on reboot. ¬†There’s lots of ways to do this but this is my method which helps me keep everything organized and within scope. First I added the mount line¬†to my ~/startup.sh script:

#! /bin/bash

~/getIP.py
~/updateGateway.sh
sshfs dave@trisket:/home/dave ~/bbb

Because I have this already to run on reboot/startup, I don’t have to do anything else. ¬†However, if you are setting this up for the first time, you can have the cron service run this file for you. ¬†I have other posts that go into more detail but you can simply add one entry in your crontab to get this done:

crontab -e

then add the following line:

@reboot /home/dave/startup.sh

Just make sure you change the path to where your startup.sh script is saved. ¬†Also, don’t forget to make your startup script executable:

chmod +x startup.sh

Overall, this was a very easy feature add to my local client configuration and the value is huge, especially at work.  I hope this helps someone and if you have any questions, feel free to post comments.