2014-07-29

A few days ago, the Inspiration Wizard cast a spell upon me, and through arcane forces unknown, the designs for some shelves rushed through my mind. In a hasty blur, the design ideas were hastily transferred to paper before the ephemeral images vacated my conscience.

After acquiring an assortment of hardware, there was just one more important tool to purchase... a metric tape measure. Sweet! Now it's time to get to business.

step 0: gathering the supplies

Based upon the amazingly detailed schematic I created, it was fairly obvious what sort of material I would need.... haha just kidding.

I sort of moseyed about the local hardware store until I found the steel cable, cable locks, washers, and eye bolts that tickled my fancy. Then I bought a 6' 10"x1" piece of pine. pfffttttt "feet and inches"

Start at the top!

Two 125cm pieces of so called 2x4s where screwed to the workshop rafters as the anchor supports. Before attaching the supports, holes were drilled and eye bolts were attached. The eyebolts will anchor the shelf to the supports.

Add some cables

Some small goofy fraction measurement of cable was purchased in 5 foot lengths; it might have been 3/32 or 5/35ths or 1/8th. It was about 2 or 3mm.

A small loop was put through the eye anchor and then locked down. The bolt on the lock is about 7mm and I need to buy a 7mm open ended wrench to properly tighten these down.

Add a slab

The 6 foot piece of wood was cut in half width-wise and 4 holes were drilled in each half.

the hanging cables were placed through the holes, followed by a washer and a cable lock. A level was used to make sure everything was level. fancy that.

Repeat!

Go look at that hella sweet schematic again. It says "repeat", and that is what I did. :)

And there you have it, one sweet suspension shelf that is ready for me to put crap on.... and it is earthquake proof.

Now quit reading... and um... go read some Robert E. Howard

Comments
2014-07-29 Mikael:
That is a nice shelf! :)

As for myself think I could not have such a shelf, since I would dufferdly bumble into it and break things ;-)

Those white things in the roof, is that insulation? And what it is made of?

We have had the metric system for ages here in Sweden, but in carpentry it lived on for a very long time. Until maybe 10 years ago, I bought wood in "2inch4" etc dimensions, even in shops aimed at consumers. Funny enough, the length was in centimeters. I still think in those terms. Not that I build anything, as I have no house anymore.
2014-07-29 jezra:
Yes, the white stuff is the insulation in the roof of the workshop. The idea is to put either soft things or indestructible things on the shelf so that when I inevitably bump into it, nothing will break.
2014-07-29 Windigo:
Sweet shelves! An excellent way to prevent stubbing your toes on conventional floor-based shelving.
2014-07-29 jezra:
Damn it! Shelf 2 is floor based.
2014-07-29 Mikael:
I haven't seen that type of mounting/placeing/notsurewhattheenglishwordis of insulation here. Interesting. Not that I can say it doesn't exist here. I am not a professional builder.
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2014-07-16

While sitting in the not-quite-scorching shade of a loquat tree, the dischordant tones of a problamatic windchime bothered me. After fixing the poorly tied string of the chimes, it occurred to me that I am lacking a windchime. Unacceptable! Fortunately, I have the internet and some crap laying about.

What Do I Know About Windchimes?

Ahem... "What did I know about windchimes?" "Not much". However, a bit of internet searching led to http://www.phy.mtu.edu/~suits/windchime.html which is a trove of information about the lengths tubes need to be in order to make a musical scale.

What I Now Know
  • The lovely pentatonic scale is:
    1. The Root Note
    2. The Major Second
    3. The Major Third
    4. The Fifth
    5. The Major Sixth
  • A chime should be suspended at 22.4% of the chime's length
  • I should really really really double check my measurement and "cut once"
  • A metric tape measure needs to be in my future because fractions are proof that the imperial system is fucking evil.

Making a Calculator

Before even thinking about what to make the windchime out of, I needed a calculator that would take the largest length of tubing (the lowest note) and compute the lengths needed to make a pentatonic scale of tubes. Originally, I wanted to make the calculator a native application for one of the GNU Linux based mobile operating systems, but none of seem to have native apps. bummer. Anyway I just wrote a crappy Javascript app thingy I'm calling tubell.

The Pain of Fractions

Due to the lack of a metric tape measure, I had to deal with some shitty fractions in order to get a semi-precise measurement. The 1/8th of an inch was my "precise" measurement, and my longest tube would be 2 feet in length; which is 192 eights of a inch.

Sadly, I had to go from eighths to a percent back to eighths. blech gimme that sweet metric system!

The Build

Gather Some Supplies

Make some wrong computations, get some tubes, borrow a hacksaw.

This is my original computations where I use the first 5 notes of a justified scale instead of a pentatonic scale.

Cut the Tubes

Forsome reason, I have not yet built/bought/acquired some form of miter box. Anyway, my hacksaw cuts are a bit wonky, but hey, that's the way I roll.

Make a Metal Drill Bit

After failing miserably to drill a hole through the metal tube with what I can only assume was a drill bit made for wood, I had to improvise.

With my rotary cutting tool, I removed the head from a self tapping metal screw, and used the remaining bit of the screw as a metal drill bit.

The Suspending Frame

The bottom of my PBR bucket was the perfect size for making a circle from which I could suspend my cut tubes.

Divide the Circle Into 5 Parts

Because the windchime will have 5 chimes, it was necessary to mark off the circumference in 5 increments in order to determine where to drill holes in the suspending frame. For this I used a bit of twine, a pen, and a thumb tack.

The smaller circle is from a tracing of my favorite orange cup, and it will be used as the chime hammer.

Make a Metal Drill Bit

Holes were drilled
a rattle can painted things black
scrap was used for the wind catchy thingy
...and the wind chime was hung from an oak tree

In Action

So what does it sound like? Pretty damn good if you ask me!

Comments
2014-07-27 jpope:
Honestly, I'm not a fan of windchimes. My Mom always (and still does) had too damn many of the things. :/

Either way, yours do sound and look quite nice. Good work on such a meh item. (my opinion of course...) :P
2014-07-27 jezra:
From the feedback I've been getting, people either love windchimes, or they hate windchimes. Perhaps I need to make another windchime that is an octave lower and only has 3 chimes.
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2014-06-22

Potion

After crafting a hella magical wizard staff / farm implement / polearm during the Summer Solstice, I thought I should don my Wizard Hat and mix up a potion. There is a beautiful rock on my property, and everytime I climb on the rock I end up getting poison oak.... what a bummer.

The Ingredients

The components for this potion are:

  • 2 liters of distilled white vinegar
  • a couple few tablespoons of salt
  • a couple of tablespoons of dish detergent
  • kippered snacks

The salt and detergent were added to a sprayer, and then the 2 liters of vinegar was slowly added to the mix.

With my handy dandy titanium spork, I ate the kippered snack. One should never fight poison oak while hungry.

The Application

It's German for "The poison oak, the"

Climb on the rock and pssssssssssssssss the sauce on the no-good poison oak.

Previously, I had simply ripped out the poison oak hoping that it would die from lack of photosynthesis. Boy was I wrong.

Another Test

Not content to just use the potion on the poison oak, I though I should test the sauce on my copious supply of nuisance blackberries.

Will this actually work? I have no idea, but I'm not spraying horrid Monsanto chemicals on my property, so I've got that going for me... which is nice.

The vinegar that I am using is 5% acid. The higher the acid, the more effective the potion is supposed to be. Farm stores sell highly concentrated vinegar, but I didn't feel like driving farther than the grocery store. Another option would be to use pickling vinegar which is about 9%.

Oh well, I'll send out an update in a few days to keep everyone updated on the progress of the potion.

Now quite reading, and go get magical.

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