Bent-Lam Guitar Stand
Buying a guitar leads to owning a plethora of other gear: strings, picks, (a second guitar,) straps, amps, (more guitars,) and of course those ubiquitous collapsible metal stands. They’re great for the road, but at home where I want to keep my nicer six-string close at hand, I thought its stand should—well, stand up—to the guitar. And that meant a quality wooden structure that would safely support the instrument without overshadowing its elegant form and wooden beauty.
Tambour doors have been used in furniture making for hundreds of years, and like many forms and styles, their popularity has waxed and waned over time. At the moment, these clever sliding panels are experiencing a bit of a renaissance, and for good reason. They are incredibly versatile once you learn a few basic guidelines. While making tambour takes practice and skill, the techniques and rules I share here are actually much simpler than they might seem at first glance. And then there’s the magic factor. Tambour doors move unlike any other kind of door, and they make a lovely sound as they disappear mysteriously into the depths of a cabinet.
I love a tambour cabinet. Whether it takes the form of a sideboard, a roll-top desk, or even a humble bread box, there’s something magical about a case piece with a door that disappears around a corner, stowing itself within the cabinet walls. This clever mechanical structure allows a seemingly flat door to travel through a tight radius. And the tambour door, like its siblings—the sliding door and the cylinder fall—looks tidy whether it’s open or closed.
Balanced Dragonfly Sculpture
I remember making a “sky hook” with my fellow Webelos years ago in my dad’s basement shop. It was a simple sawn-out shape that hung a belt off the side of a table, seemingly in defiance of gravity. Ever since then, I have been fascinated by clever objects that take advantage of the laws of physics to create an illusion. This simple dragonfly sculpture does just that; the low, forward sweeping wings put the center of gravity right below the tip of the dragonfly’s nose, allowing it to balance “magically” on nearly anything.
Great Gear: A comfy shop perch
For tasks such as carving and scrollsawing, there is nothing like having a stable seat to sit on while you’re getting the job done. Vyper’s shop chair provides just that.
Persimmon (Diospyros virginiana) is the only true member of the ebony family that grows in North America. But unlike its tropical counterpart and many other trees, the vast majority of persimmon lumber consists of cream-colored sapwood, with only a tiny portion of dark heartwood. Surprisingly, though, its sapwood is more highly prized and utilized.
Tips & Tricks: Ladder does extra duty
In addition to its intended use, I get extra duty from my folding ladder. I made a series of shelves from scrap plywood that I sit on the rungs as needed. For some tasks, I’ll use a single shelf to keep my tools readily available at a convenient height, or I’ll use several shelves as a drying rack when finishing multiples of a project. I also use the ladder as a support when sawing long pieces with my chop saw.