Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Western Maryland Street Rod Roundup

Almost every year on Labor Day weekend, we visit our dear friends Rebecca and Nelson down in Cumberland, MD. Labor Day weekend is the last weekend I have free every summer before beginning the choir season again at Lancaster Church of the Brethren, so it's a great weekend to get away. But we don't get to skip church! Rebecca is a Methodist minister, so we usually wind up providing some sort of special music for her service. This year was no exception.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Z4 Window Reset (plus a windsheld wiper problem)

I had a weird problem the other day: the wipers stopped working in my Z4. Well, not completely. If I pulled the wiper lever toward me to activate the windshield washer, that worked, and the wipers wiped correctly. But, it wouldn't work in any other position. Obviously, the wiper motor and all associated linkages were fine, since they would work with the washer.

Friday, August 22, 2014

A New Wine Rack, Part 3

I've spent about 10 hours across the week on this project, and a casual observer would say, "It still looks just like the end of Part 2!" But not really - there has been a lot of detailed work on deciding how things are going to fit together, and on the many operations needed on each part. Fair warning: this is going to be a sorta long post, because I'm storing things here to remind myself how I did it, should I want to do it again later. In the narrative below, I call the parts already completed, with the scallops to hold the wine bottles, the rails. The short pieces that connect the two rails are called the stretchers.

First, here's what didn't work.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The "Dangerous City"

This isn't a project post at all, except that it involves a trip to the Grant St. Garage to work on my wine rack. I want you to forward this post to all your friends who think it's dangerous to set foot in the city!

Tonight, Mary Ellen needed to practice the piano, and also wanted to watch a TV show that I didn't care to see. So, I set out on foot for the six-block walk to the Grant St. Garage. It was around 8:45 when I left, so it was already dark. Here are the dangerous, scary things I encountered while walking over:

Saturday, August 16, 2014

A New Wine Rack, Part 2

Some good progress on the wine rack. After figuring out the basic layout and the setup to cut those curved bottle holders in Part 1, it was time to get down to business on the real thing. The first step was to create what is called a "story stick" - it basically tells the story of how to make something complicated. It's well worth the time, especially if you think you'll do it again someday. I used stable 1/2" plywood to make the stick, and scribed the location of each bottle.

Friday, August 1, 2014

A New Wine Rack, Part 1

This project started with a tracing - you know, tracing the shape of something onto paper. I was visiting my friend Sydne, and noticed her wine rack. I've been wanting to build one, but just couldn't get started. Looking at hers, I realized the design of the actual rack that held the bottles was exactly what I wanted. Basically, the bottles sit close together on two horizontal pieces, with different-sized cuts front and back to hold the bottom and the neck of the bottle.

I asked for a pad and pencil, and traced the shape of both rails, and made a couple of notes about size, distance apart, etc. - enough that I could duplicate the layout in my design: