Before I get started on the main topic, I wanted to pass along that I am now on Instagram as LeeLairdWoodworking as well as Twitter as @LeeLairdWW, in case anyone didn’t know. It’s been a bit since I had time to write a proper article, so if you’d like, you can see what I’m up to on one of the other feeds. Ok, so on with the article.
I was working at my bench a couple of days ago and went to measure a sharpening stone, as I was preparing to make a new honing guide board, since I’d just purchased the new Lie-Nielsen Honing Guide and a few add-ons. (If you’d like to read about the build, hop over to Highland Woodworking and it should be up in the not too distant future, or you can check out some of the other articles I’ve written for Highland).
Ok, so I measured the sharpening stone, using a tape measure that was close, and engaging it’s built-in clip at the end of the tape. It measure almost exactly 8 1/2″ long. I was about to go cut some wood, and I’m not sure why, but I decided to measure one more time starting at the 1″ mark, just for confirmation. Whoa, this time it measure 8 1/4″ long. As you might imagine, I checked both ways a number of times, before believing what I was seeing. As it turned out, the end clip wasn’t bent at a 90-degree angle, but the tip was back towards the tape measures body. This caused the tip to make contact while the measuring tape wasn’t completely lined up with the edge of the stone.
I’ve owned this tape measure for 20+ years, and I can recall over the years that I’d measure multiple times only to end up with the wrong size. Jeez, I wish I’d dug a little deeper back then, to figure out the actual cause.
Since I knew I can always use the tape measure in the second mode above, I decided to see if I could actually fix the problem. I held the tip, as close to the bend as possible, while holding the other leg of the metal piece that makes the tip.
While holding both very tightly, I gradually bent the tip towards the 90-degree mark, and then released. I was afraid it might break if I went to fast, or too far. After a number of small movements, I decided to call it a day. I got the tape so it measures within 1/16″ comparing between the tip and the alignment mode. I found this reasonable enough to stop there.
Mainly, I wanted to make sure everyone checks their tape measures, to see if they are actually reading accurately, before wasting time or resources. Of course, I don’t usually use this when I’m making critical measurements, but, knowing your tools are correct sure helps have more confidence.
I hope you enjoyed the information and please let me know if you have any comments or suggestions.
I know, when I write, I have a tendency to generate some really long articles. This article, will be so different, that I’m almost done! Ok, not really, but it will be super short, for me.
I’ve written about completing my Stitching Pony, and it was doing its job, but there was one aspect that needed tweaking. When I was securing some leather in the Pony’s jaws, it would begin to tighten, and then it almost required a tool to hold the head of the bolt while I further tightened the wing-nut.
When I stitched up the second head-cover for the Plumb hatchet (see here, if you’d like to read the article), the simple solution just flooded over me. I got me a nut (what we called Aircraft nuts with the nylon on one side of the threads, as they were used on aircraft, so they wouldn’t loosen due to vibration) that fit the 3/8″ – 16 pattern of the bolt, and another washer.
I took the wing-nut and washer off of the existing bolt, pulled the bolt back so the thread-end was only through one of the Pony’s legs, and put the other washer on followed by the new nut. I snugged it up against the inside surface of the Pony’s leg (the first one the bolt passes through), which held the bolt secure, while allowing the second leg to remain unimpeded by this setup.
Now, with the Pony’s base held in my vise, I can easily snug up the jaws, with only dealing with the wing-nut. If I find that I still want extra holding power, I still have another idea to handle that issue, but that’s for another day.
If you’ve made a similar Stitching Pony, or have something else along the same idea, this is a really simple modification that makes it much more friendly to use. I hope you’ve enjoyed this article and as always, please let me know if you have any questions or comments.
#Woodworking #Leather #Leather working #hand stitching #Lee Laird #Aircraft nuts