Not long ago me and the wife topped off the garden area with some bird houses. She likes having the birds around and hopefully with any luck we will get some birds. So, I made three bird houses and mounted them on top of 4"x4" posts. Our garden area is basically hazelnut (off-white), so everything was pre-painted by us before doing this. The houses were easy to build. They just have a 1"x2" frame... Read More

Time to add the finish layer to the bench seat. Normally, I would do this after painting but since this bench has ornate curves, that is difficult to do. Each board has been cut to fit. Otherwise, I would paint then stain the seat are and attach it after the fact. I had some #2 red oak left over from a job from years ago. I always thought oak flooring on a bench or chair would be nice. Well, here... Read More

Next, I'll build the framework for the seat. I'm using 1"x4" pine (It's what I had laying around), although this is what I'd use anyway. Since the front of the bench legs are pointing out slightly, I'll get my width measurement from the back where the legs are attached to the headboard. I can't remember off hand what my measurement was but I'll cut two boards at this length. After stapling the fi... Read More

My mom, Evelyn, lives in Colorado Springs and at the turn of the year, they had 75mph winds that caused all kinds of trouble for fence owners and anybody with a roof. I was unaware of what was happening because I live 2 hours north but she called me and said, "I need help". I asked what was going on and she said her fence blew over. She then told me about the winds and all the details. She asked ... Read More

One of the cool parts of this project so far, is the teeth. After thinking about how to do this, I decided to 1"x2"'s and 2"x4"'s cut at different angles for the base size and bulk. After that, I took some other chunks of the same material, got a screwdriver, hammer and chipped away making slivers and chunks. I then took those and stapled them to the bulk tooth in random patterns. This created a ... Read More

So, I had great luck with my other bone (for my 1st one). I thought I'd make another one. I decided to change the theme of it. Last time it was more or less a "been the woods, decomposing for awhile" bone. This time I thought I'd a "just been removed bone". Something that still has tendons/muscle attached. My supply list has changed as my process has changed. When I was doing the last one, I was ... Read More

Hello, this is my Human Bone Tutorial. Before I begin, I watched a few different tutorials online to get a basic idea of how to do this. I only needed a basic idea because this kind of thing is really driven by imagination. ... Read More

The very last part of the Long Mont Velo Build was to build some bike shelves for Paul. He wanted a couple of shelves to display some of his bikes. Instead of building something typical, I thought I'd try something a little different and if it didn't work our, I could always fall back on typical shelves. First, I had to glue some 2"x12" pine boards together with dowel rods. A few days later they ... Read More

Now is the fun part, although it's all fun. It's time for the build, Now that everything is stripped and sanded, I can cut the headboard in half and turn the pieces 90° to create our bench. Since the legs are curved I have to pay attention to where half way is. With square legs it's easy, but since these are curved it's a little different. So, using a couple of squares I'll be able to find the ce... Read More

Part 02 is the removing the finish and sanding it down. As you noticed I've removed the inserts. I will sand them down separately but I will re-install them afterward. What I've liked so far about this thing is that it had the original screws holding them inserts in. I like that and I always (if possible) try to use and keep the original hardware on things. It has character and I think that every... Read More

I picked up an antique 1940's (according to the lady) bed frame. I saw it on-line advertised in an estate sale. What I liked is that it was cheap, I think I paid about $75 for it and great lines. The height was also an eye grabber for me. After seeing it in person I immediately thought about making it into a bench as I had never done a bed frame to bench conversion. The only issue with this is tha... Read More

Yesterday was the most exhausting day I have ever had I think. I installed 1000sq' of laminate hard wood floor. I didn't plan on doing the floors as Paul was going to stain the floor. He decided to only stain the back work/storage area and then install hardwood flooring over the rest. I like doing hardwood floor, although I'm not excited about laminate flooring as I am a real hardwood floor guy. H... Read More

Today was a break from the normal as far as a build goes. Being is how this is a bike shop, Paul needed two work benches built for working/repairing bikes. He asked me if I could build these for him and I said you bet. I started by dado cutting four 4"x4" posts that were 32" high. In these dado cuts I installed the 2"x4"s I had cut. Once installed, this gives a nice solid feel, takes out any wobb... Read More

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Article from May 2016
Long Mont Velo Build P03 Drywall

Today's update is after the drywall is hung, finished, and textured. This took a little time. Hanging drywall for me is always pretty quick, its the finishing part that I wait on. It isn't difficult but I have to wait for it to dry. I can get all seams finished off with usually no more than 3 coats. So, thats three days of dry time. I did these 2 and a half coats in the mornings that way it had the remainder of the day and the night to dry.

I sand in between each coat. Normally, I sand by hand but this time I used my cordless sander to do the job. I went back doing it by hand for some the finer details. Things went faster naturally, but also put more dust in the air. If you have a mask and dont mind getting dust all over? Give it a try. The last step here was the texture. Paul elected to match the texture he already had which is a orange peel knock down texture.

Long Mont Velo Build P02 Framing

This project begins with some standard framing @ 16" on center. You'll notice that i did a small room (fitting room) with a 2' 0" door. This leads to a 5' high wall, which then goes into a customer service counter with wheelchair access.

I used a Hilti Gun to attach the bottom plates to the floor. I did this every 16" in an alternate pattern (in between them) from the studs. For the customer service counter, I did a 42" wall that drops into a 36" high wall. Part of the counter had to be wheel chair accessible which is 36" high.

Long Mont Velo Build P01 Introduction

Paul Andersen (my wife's cousin actually), is a pretty serious bike rider. What happens when you are serious about something? Well, at some point you open you're own shop/store.

Ultimately, this was the road that Paul and his wife Trudee would take in their lives together. That is where I come in. They asked me to do the build for their shop/store. I said yes without hesitation, of course. The build will include a fitting room, customer service counter area, storage shelves, work benches, and what ever else Paul can think of. I will be doing the whole build for them which incldues framing, drywall, texture, paint, work benches, custom floating bike shelves, and odd/ends.

Zombie Kong Skull P05 Drywall Mud

This post covers the 1st layer of drywall mud. I went to Home Depot and bought a 5 gallon container of drywall mud. This thing will take several coats to cover and then more to form different features. I got the 1st coat on and filled in 3/4 of the surface. A 2nd coat should get it completely covered.

Just so you know I used the entire bucket of this stuff and will have to get more tomorrow or next I go to Home Depot. The downside with using drywall mud or all purpose mud (basically), is that by the time I am done, this thing will have some weight to it. I'm guessing it will weigh about 75lbs maybe more. I will weigh it when I am done.

Zombie Kong Skull P04 Chicken Wire

This post covers the chicken wire. The chicken wire is to further define features and to further form the kong skull. I applied this using my air stapler, using 1/2" staples.

Since chicken wire is bendable, it can be formed to further define features. If you look in the picture below (#05), you can see how the chicken wire further defines the top of the nose.

Zombie Kong Skull P03 Padding

This post covers the padding. I added padding for a few reasons. It takes up bulk and stops my mud from falling out (backer). This is padding from couch that kept for something just like this. It was about 2' by 2' square.

Using this for bulk around the eyes and nose, helps define certain areas of the skull. To apply the padding I used my air staple gun. For areas that were to tight to get the gun into I used 3m adhesive spray.

Zombie Kong Skull P02 Framing

This post covers the framing part of this project. I have decided to change a thing or two just to make this thing unique. I have altered the mouth and lower jaw, everything else I'm trying to get pretty much right on.

I started with just the basic frame and have then just added smaller pieces here and there for backing or to further define some features. After this I will further define areas by using a batting kind of material. This will help form more rigid eyes, jaw bone line, and nose. The chicken wire will help even further define areas for me before applying the plaster in the final stages.

Garden Potting Bench

Mother's Day was awesome this year for my wife, Angela. Last year we put in a garden and she has wanted a potting bench. I've put it off, not on purpose but because we had other things that we were doing and trying to get done. However, this year she was out of town for Mother's Day and I thought, I should build that thing.

I quickly did a scan of materials I had on hand and made a short list of some things to get from Home Depot. I went to Home Depot and picked up the items I needed.

Zombie Kong Skull P01 Introduction

Ok, my goal is to create a Zombie Kong, which basically is a King Kong Zombie type thing. It originally started out as the Pankot Palace Skull from "Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom" but as you will see, it isn't even close.

Several people who have seen this thing have asked why I chose an ape, lol. So, after reconsidering my options with this thing, trash it or keep it, I thought I'd keep it and rebrand it and call it a success.