Blog

My First Built-in

Posted by Bill McBeth on

My first built-in build for a customer.  Read the story about the build and watch the video.

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My First Built-in

Posted by Bill McBeth on

My first built-in build for a customer.  Read the story about the build and watch the video.

Read more


Aftermath: The state of my workshop

Posted by Bill McBeth on

The other day I was sitting in my workshop reflecting on the past year and thinking about what the future holds for me and this hobby that continues to seduce me with its siren song.  Most of my life I have enjoyed doing something that involved wood of some sort, whether it was banging nails into a 2” x 4” in my grandpas workshop when I was a kid, building my first workbench using scrap wood from a house being built across the street when I was twelve, finishing the basement in my first house or making items to sell.  This year I accomplished a goal that I set for myself and that was to finally start taking this hobby and turn into a business.  I recently had my second craft show, it was a small venue but I actually did much better than my first one which was a rather large venue.  I made a few sales, I gave out a lot of business cards, I spent the day with my wife helping me man the booth and I got to talk to a lot of folks about my work.  I can yammer on and on about the experience of doing craft shows and I am sure that in future posts I will.  However, like I said I am sitting in my workshop reflecting on the experience but I keep getting interrupted by the complete and utter mess that my workshop is in.  My once cleaned and organized workshop is now in chaos…..again!  There is sawdust everywhere, tools scattered all over, bits and pieces of sandpaper strewn about.  So now I am reflecting on what was working in my shop and what isn’t working. 

What’s working for me?

My workshop like many who dabble in this hobby is in the garage of my home.  I am lucky enough to have a three car garage and a very understanding wife who doesn’t complain too much when I take up the entire garage with my projects.  I have a fantastic albeit old Powermatic table saw, it is a model 63 Artisan contractor saw with a 50” table. A large assembly table and ample workbench space.  This year I picked up a Performax 16-32 drum sander, this tool has been a godsend when finishing my cutting boards and has saved me countless hours of sanding.  I also picked up a Rigid Oscillating belt/spindle sander, i don’t know how I lived without this tool as well.  I also have quite a bit of cabinet space in my shop to store my odds and ends. 

What’s not working?

I recently cleaned up and organized my workshop before I got started on getting items ready for the craft shows.  There is nothing like actually having to work in your shop to tell you what is working and what isn’t working.  I did a lot of turnings on my lathe, I was churning out pens, ornaments and bottle stoppers; my Delta Midi lathe was sitting on top of my workbench; after my 7th bottle stopper and several blank blowouts my shoulders and back were absolutely killing me.  I finally determined that my workbench was way too high to comfortably wield the lathe tools and was also causing me to ruin many blanks.  I moved my lathe to the assembly table and that fixed the fatigue issues but now was taking up space on my assembly table that doubles as my outfeed table for the table saw and interfered with my needs on the assembly table. 

Power is the other big issue in my workshop.  I have two outlets that are 15 amp on one circuit that comes into the garage and I have two more 15 amp outlets on another circuit that powers my lights and garage doors.  On numerous occasions I have tripped the breakers  when running my shop vac and my table saw or drum sander.  This not only causes me to have to go into the basement to reset the breaker but it also causes a safety hazard if I didn’t get the tool off in the dark.  This also puts a hold on adding in a dust collection system into the workshop. 

I recently built a large mobile wood rack that stores my sheet goods and lumber, this is nothing but a catch all and storing my lumber flat makes it difficult to get to the pieces that I want.  I also have a workflow issue in the shop, transitioning from tools to workspaces is a real pain in the butt.   I also have no drawers and I can tell you, a work shop needs drawers. 

 What’s Next?

There is a lot of work to do and I don’t have much time to get it done before I have to get ready for my next round of Craft shows which the season begins in March of 2017. 

Here is a list of what I am going to get done to upgrade the workshop which will make my life easier. 

  • Upgrade the power: I am going to run a sub panel to the garage that will allow me to run my tools and put in a dust collection system.
  • Build mobile carts for my Lathe, Sander, and Drum Sander.  The drum sander is on a mobile base but it can be more sturdy and I want all the mobile bases to match. 
  • Lower and rebuild current workbench, it is currently in an L shape and I will be moving it a straight work bench, with lots of drawers and will sport dust collection built in and a down draft area.
  • Dedicated outfeed table:  This will allow me to use my assembly table for assembly. 
  • Drill holes in the assembly table to allow for bench dogs.  I have a couple jigs that I am thinking of to help in cutting board glue ups that utilize bench dogs.
  • Find a better way to store my lumber.  
  • Build clamp storage

Read more

Aftermath: The state of my workshop

Posted by Bill McBeth on

The other day I was sitting in my workshop reflecting on the past year and thinking about what the future holds for me and this hobby that continues to seduce me with its siren song.  Most of my life I have enjoyed doing something that involved wood of some sort, whether it was banging nails into a 2” x 4” in my grandpas workshop when I was a kid, building my first workbench using scrap wood from a house being built across the street when I was twelve, finishing the basement in my first house or making items to sell.  This year I accomplished a goal that I set for myself and that was to finally start taking this hobby and turn into a business.  I recently had my second craft show, it was a small venue but I actually did much better than my first one which was a rather large venue.  I made a few sales, I gave out a lot of business cards, I spent the day with my wife helping me man the booth and I got to talk to a lot of folks about my work.  I can yammer on and on about the experience of doing craft shows and I am sure that in future posts I will.  However, like I said I am sitting in my workshop reflecting on the experience but I keep getting interrupted by the complete and utter mess that my workshop is in.  My once cleaned and organized workshop is now in chaos…..again!  There is sawdust everywhere, tools scattered all over, bits and pieces of sandpaper strewn about.  So now I am reflecting on what was working in my shop and what isn’t working. 

What’s working for me?

My workshop like many who dabble in this hobby is in the garage of my home.  I am lucky enough to have a three car garage and a very understanding wife who doesn’t complain too much when I take up the entire garage with my projects.  I have a fantastic albeit old Powermatic table saw, it is a model 63 Artisan contractor saw with a 50” table. A large assembly table and ample workbench space.  This year I picked up a Performax 16-32 drum sander, this tool has been a godsend when finishing my cutting boards and has saved me countless hours of sanding.  I also picked up a Rigid Oscillating belt/spindle sander, i don’t know how I lived without this tool as well.  I also have quite a bit of cabinet space in my shop to store my odds and ends. 

What’s not working?

I recently cleaned up and organized my workshop before I got started on getting items ready for the craft shows.  There is nothing like actually having to work in your shop to tell you what is working and what isn’t working.  I did a lot of turnings on my lathe, I was churning out pens, ornaments and bottle stoppers; my Delta Midi lathe was sitting on top of my workbench; after my 7th bottle stopper and several blank blowouts my shoulders and back were absolutely killing me.  I finally determined that my workbench was way too high to comfortably wield the lathe tools and was also causing me to ruin many blanks.  I moved my lathe to the assembly table and that fixed the fatigue issues but now was taking up space on my assembly table that doubles as my outfeed table for the table saw and interfered with my needs on the assembly table. 

Power is the other big issue in my workshop.  I have two outlets that are 15 amp on one circuit that comes into the garage and I have two more 15 amp outlets on another circuit that powers my lights and garage doors.  On numerous occasions I have tripped the breakers  when running my shop vac and my table saw or drum sander.  This not only causes me to have to go into the basement to reset the breaker but it also causes a safety hazard if I didn’t get the tool off in the dark.  This also puts a hold on adding in a dust collection system into the workshop. 

I recently built a large mobile wood rack that stores my sheet goods and lumber, this is nothing but a catch all and storing my lumber flat makes it difficult to get to the pieces that I want.  I also have a workflow issue in the shop, transitioning from tools to workspaces is a real pain in the butt.   I also have no drawers and I can tell you, a work shop needs drawers. 

 What’s Next?

There is a lot of work to do and I don’t have much time to get it done before I have to get ready for my next round of Craft shows which the season begins in March of 2017. 

Here is a list of what I am going to get done to upgrade the workshop which will make my life easier. 

  • Upgrade the power: I am going to run a sub panel to the garage that will allow me to run my tools and put in a dust collection system.
  • Build mobile carts for my Lathe, Sander, and Drum Sander.  The drum sander is on a mobile base but it can be more sturdy and I want all the mobile bases to match. 
  • Lower and rebuild current workbench, it is currently in an L shape and I will be moving it a straight work bench, with lots of drawers and will sport dust collection built in and a down draft area.
  • Dedicated outfeed table:  This will allow me to use my assembly table for assembly. 
  • Drill holes in the assembly table to allow for bench dogs.  I have a couple jigs that I am thinking of to help in cutting board glue ups that utilize bench dogs.
  • Find a better way to store my lumber.  
  • Build clamp storage

Read more


Solid Cherry Desk....For Me!

Posted by Bill McBeth on

Sometimes you have to look on the bright side of life (I bet you are whistling that tune now aren't you, if not go watch Monty Python Life of Brian).  May of 2016 the company that i have been with for 5 years laid me off due to budget cuts and a re-org.  It was quite a kick in the gut and I thought being an IT Manager and Systems Engineer I wouldn't be out of work for very long.  Fast forward 4 months, I finally got a job offer.  It wasn't the ideal position, however, it paid well and was work from home.  The work from home left me in a lurch, my desk only had room for my gaming system and wouldn't work well to add another workstation, so I decided I was going to build my first piece of furniture using quality materials.  I had some cherry that was slated for a Morris Chair i wanted to build....I'm not going to lie the wood has been in my workshop for a couple years now.   I decided that this material would be perfect to build a minimalist desk with a large work surface, but there are so many design options.  I spent a couple week looking at desks online, I tell you what Pinterest is a wonderful site.  I finally decided that I really enjoyed the aesthetics of a Parsons Table.

I began this journey by milling the wood for the top and getting the legs ready.   The top wasn't quite deep enough so i had to go and get more cherry, unfortunately I couldn't find any that was as thick as what I had, this means there is going to be a lot of planing.  Lucky for me my Father In-Law has a nice new thickness planer that he was more than happy to let me come test out. After getting the boards to the desired thickness, I decided I was going to use pocket holes and glue to create the panel for the top of the desk.  So i went ahead and drilled all the holes for the pocket screws and then thought it was a good idea to go ahead and glue the panel up and then put in the screws after it dried.  This was a big mistake, the boards shifted a lot when I clamped them.  In retrospect, I will use dowels or biscuits next time, this will ensure that I have even boards when glued and clamped.

The next steps were the apron boards for the bottom of the desk.  Well here is another mistake, somehow I cut one of the boards for the apron way to short...and by short I mean damn near a foot, I knew I should have measured when squaring the boards.  So now i have to cut the top to fit the aprons or go and buy more cherry wood.  Well being unemployed and living off unemployment pay the option was to cut the table top to fit the apron.  Now instead of having a nice 8ft long desk it is now a bit over 7ft.  I learned some more valuable lessons during this part of the build.  Next time I will create the leg and apron structure before I even touch the top, I will use dowels instead of pocket holes or take the time to do a mortise and tenon.   Well the desks construction is gone, I won't go into the horror story of trying to use the drum sander on this large desktop panel, I really don't want to relive that horror.  Side note, I will be creating a new cart for the drum sander and building in larger extensions.

Once again I am stumped on how to finish this desk, like I said it is my first build with quality material and I want to finish it with a quality finish.  I watched so many videos, read forums, it seems that not one woodworker out there can agree on how to finish cherry.  Cherry can be tough to finish, it can be blotchy, blah blah blah blah, the only common thread was cherry can be blotchy.  I decide I am going to take a risk and use Watco Cherry Danish Oil and then finish it off with a wipe on polyurethane.  To quote one of my favorite movies Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade "I have chosen wisely."  The desk is exactly what I wanted a minimalist desk with no storage and a lot of work space.   I learned so much from this build and can't wait to build another.  Thanks for reading.

Read more

Solid Cherry Desk....For Me!

Posted by Bill McBeth on

Sometimes you have to look on the bright side of life (I bet you are whistling that tune now aren't you, if not go watch Monty Python Life of Brian).  May of 2016 the company that i have been with for 5 years laid me off due to budget cuts and a re-org.  It was quite a kick in the gut and I thought being an IT Manager and Systems Engineer I wouldn't be out of work for very long.  Fast forward 4 months, I finally got a job offer.  It wasn't the ideal position, however, it paid well and was work from home.  The work from home left me in a lurch, my desk only had room for my gaming system and wouldn't work well to add another workstation, so I decided I was going to build my first piece of furniture using quality materials.  I had some cherry that was slated for a Morris Chair i wanted to build....I'm not going to lie the wood has been in my workshop for a couple years now.   I decided that this material would be perfect to build a minimalist desk with a large work surface, but there are so many design options.  I spent a couple week looking at desks online, I tell you what Pinterest is a wonderful site.  I finally decided that I really enjoyed the aesthetics of a Parsons Table.

I began this journey by milling the wood for the top and getting the legs ready.   The top wasn't quite deep enough so i had to go and get more cherry, unfortunately I couldn't find any that was as thick as what I had, this means there is going to be a lot of planing.  Lucky for me my Father In-Law has a nice new thickness planer that he was more than happy to let me come test out. After getting the boards to the desired thickness, I decided I was going to use pocket holes and glue to create the panel for the top of the desk.  So i went ahead and drilled all the holes for the pocket screws and then thought it was a good idea to go ahead and glue the panel up and then put in the screws after it dried.  This was a big mistake, the boards shifted a lot when I clamped them.  In retrospect, I will use dowels or biscuits next time, this will ensure that I have even boards when glued and clamped.

The next steps were the apron boards for the bottom of the desk.  Well here is another mistake, somehow I cut one of the boards for the apron way to short...and by short I mean damn near a foot, I knew I should have measured when squaring the boards.  So now i have to cut the top to fit the aprons or go and buy more cherry wood.  Well being unemployed and living off unemployment pay the option was to cut the table top to fit the apron.  Now instead of having a nice 8ft long desk it is now a bit over 7ft.  I learned some more valuable lessons during this part of the build.  Next time I will create the leg and apron structure before I even touch the top, I will use dowels instead of pocket holes or take the time to do a mortise and tenon.   Well the desks construction is gone, I won't go into the horror story of trying to use the drum sander on this large desktop panel, I really don't want to relive that horror.  Side note, I will be creating a new cart for the drum sander and building in larger extensions.

Once again I am stumped on how to finish this desk, like I said it is my first build with quality material and I want to finish it with a quality finish.  I watched so many videos, read forums, it seems that not one woodworker out there can agree on how to finish cherry.  Cherry can be tough to finish, it can be blotchy, blah blah blah blah, the only common thread was cherry can be blotchy.  I decide I am going to take a risk and use Watco Cherry Danish Oil and then finish it off with a wipe on polyurethane.  To quote one of my favorite movies Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade "I have chosen wisely."  The desk is exactly what I wanted a minimalist desk with no storage and a lot of work space.   I learned so much from this build and can't wait to build another.  Thanks for reading.

Read more


My First Craft Show

Posted by Bill McBeth on

I Did It! Wood Artisan made its first appearance at a craft show.

With my very first craft show behind me, all I can do is breath a sigh of relief that I did it and now I know what to expect for future shows.
I signed up for the show in May which gave me 6 months to get ready for the show.  However, I lost my job and went through some tough times and coupled with my tendency to procrastinate on my personal projects, I didn't really start getting crafts ready for the show until about October. I regret that the 5 months  I was out of work that I didn't do more in the workshop, but as the saying goes "hindsight is 20/20."

The Millard West Craft Show is a larger craft show in the area and they do it twice a year spring and fall. There were over 200 vendors and the show organizers were great and did a great job. The money goes to the High School baseball team and the baseball team helps the vendors carry in and take out their stuff. It was a great experience and a very smooth operation.

Of course, I had my reservations about doing the show. I thought it might be too big for my debut as a craft vendor.  So I decided to ask my Father In-Law if he wanted to share a booth with me. This ensured that I had someone to talk to and that we could at least sit together.  After-all he is one of my favorite people in my life and I enjoy the time I get to spend with him. I know that is not how most men feel about their In-Law's but I am all about not following the norm. The day of the show I was a little bit intimidated by the number of vendors and the two vendors in my area selling similar products, one of which is my Father In-Law's twin brother who make some of the most gorgeous cutting boards and segmented turnings. The whole night before I kept asking myself, "would I be able to pull it off?" "Did I even come close to making enough inventory?" "Are my crafts good enough to sell?" Luckily my wife stepped in and put together a gorgeous booth for me so that was one thing I didn't have to worry about.  She also had a shirt made with my logo on it.  She is such a wonderful gal!

Even with my reservations I knew this was the next step in taking the business to the next level and getting my name out there. This was not only a chance to showcase my work but to:

  • Promote my business
  • Meet and greet potential customers in my local area
  • Meet other vendors and crafters
  • Check out my competition
  • Get a feeling on how these things work

Unfortunately it wasn't may day. I made a lot of contacts, gave out a lot of business cards, and had some good conversations about my products. People were just not buying. I spoke with the other similar vendors and they were having the same luck as me. On the bright side I made enough to cover my booth fees and I went ahead and signed up for the spring show in March. I got a ton of positive feedback about my products and how gorgeous they were. Overall, I didn't make a ton of money, but I did get a ton of experience. Yes I was nervous, it was a new experience and I am very happy that I did it.

Some of the lessons that I learned:

  • Procrastination is my Achilles heel.
  • Add some products that I didn't that were on my list to get done in the first place.
  • New display for my Ornaments--they got lost in the tree and didn't stand out.
  • Add a little more color to my booth.

I have another craft show on December 3rd. It is a much smaller event and I am very much looking forward to the experience and maybe, just maybe, makes some sales. Thanks for reading.

Read more

My First Craft Show

Posted by Bill McBeth on

I Did It! Wood Artisan made its first appearance at a craft show.

With my very first craft show behind me, all I can do is breath a sigh of relief that I did it and now I know what to expect for future shows.
I signed up for the show in May which gave me 6 months to get ready for the show.  However, I lost my job and went through some tough times and coupled with my tendency to procrastinate on my personal projects, I didn't really start getting crafts ready for the show until about October. I regret that the 5 months  I was out of work that I didn't do more in the workshop, but as the saying goes "hindsight is 20/20."

The Millard West Craft Show is a larger craft show in the area and they do it twice a year spring and fall. There were over 200 vendors and the show organizers were great and did a great job. The money goes to the High School baseball team and the baseball team helps the vendors carry in and take out their stuff. It was a great experience and a very smooth operation.

Of course, I had my reservations about doing the show. I thought it might be too big for my debut as a craft vendor.  So I decided to ask my Father In-Law if he wanted to share a booth with me. This ensured that I had someone to talk to and that we could at least sit together.  After-all he is one of my favorite people in my life and I enjoy the time I get to spend with him. I know that is not how most men feel about their In-Law's but I am all about not following the norm. The day of the show I was a little bit intimidated by the number of vendors and the two vendors in my area selling similar products, one of which is my Father In-Law's twin brother who make some of the most gorgeous cutting boards and segmented turnings. The whole night before I kept asking myself, "would I be able to pull it off?" "Did I even come close to making enough inventory?" "Are my crafts good enough to sell?" Luckily my wife stepped in and put together a gorgeous booth for me so that was one thing I didn't have to worry about.  She also had a shirt made with my logo on it.  She is such a wonderful gal!

Even with my reservations I knew this was the next step in taking the business to the next level and getting my name out there. This was not only a chance to showcase my work but to:

  • Promote my business
  • Meet and greet potential customers in my local area
  • Meet other vendors and crafters
  • Check out my competition
  • Get a feeling on how these things work

Unfortunately it wasn't may day. I made a lot of contacts, gave out a lot of business cards, and had some good conversations about my products. People were just not buying. I spoke with the other similar vendors and they were having the same luck as me. On the bright side I made enough to cover my booth fees and I went ahead and signed up for the spring show in March. I got a ton of positive feedback about my products and how gorgeous they were. Overall, I didn't make a ton of money, but I did get a ton of experience. Yes I was nervous, it was a new experience and I am very happy that I did it.

Some of the lessons that I learned:

  • Procrastination is my Achilles heel.
  • Add some products that I didn't that were on my list to get done in the first place.
  • New display for my Ornaments--they got lost in the tree and didn't stand out.
  • Add a little more color to my booth.

I have another craft show on December 3rd. It is a much smaller event and I am very much looking forward to the experience and maybe, just maybe, makes some sales. Thanks for reading.

Read more


Loft Bed

Posted by Bill McBeth on

Let me start this post with a story….

It is around 2007 maybe it was 2008, the wife and I are shopping for our (at the time) only daughter.  This was going to be her first big girl bed.  Being new parents we had delusions that if we spend an obscene amount of money for (what we thought was) a quality bed made out of real wood that it would last until college or longer.  HAH! wish I could go back into time and slap myself.  Within the first year the white bedroom set had been exposed to markers, crayons,  stickers, spit, you name it this bed and dressers had it.

Fast forward a few years.  We have moved form our home in Kansas to our new home in Nebraska, this bed has survived well so far and had the stains to prove it.  The bed was sturdy as it should have been being made of real wood.  CRACK…somehow the 50lbs 9 year old broke the bed and split the wood where the rails attach to headboard.  So here I am cursing up a storm, carrying this bed to the garage to get repaired, more upset that I spent as much money on the bed and it broke.  The bed was repaired and back in her room, it lasted another 2 years before it finally gave up the ghost and broke again.  I wasn’t going to repair it again….that is when I decided I am going to build her a new bed.  Problem is I had no time and my workshop was in a complete disarray.

Lets Fast forward again….I keep telling her I am going to build her a bed, she decided she wanted a loft bed.  I was like heck yeah lets build this elaborate awesome bed….hah like I have time for that.  It is March/April of 2015 now, I finally think of a design that I like and she likes as well…Another lesson for you fathers of girls…DON’T SHOW YOUR 11 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER PINTEREST, you will get an endless supply of pins from your tween daughter.  This is great I have a plan, I have a design in my head, I head to Menards and pick through all their 2x6 pine to find the clearest, straightest pieces I could get.   come home with 15 8ft 2 x 6 pine.  I go ahead and start cutting the wood for the bed frame…done!

I go ahead and cut the legs that are going to hold the bed up off the ground, around 5ft off the ground with excess for rails.  I go ahead and assemble the bedframe using my Kreg pockethole jig.  Being the through person that I am and not wanting to get ahead of myself I run up to her room and grab one of the mattresses so I can do a test fit on the frame. The fit was so tight there was no way she could have ever changed her sheets…what did I do wrong.  I go back over my measurements I wrote down, the paper matched was the bed was, the bed frame was 1 1/2” off…DOH!!! I forgot to take in account the width of the material on one side.  Lucky for me the legs that I cut were the exact length I needed, Happy dance.  I swap out the boards, test the fit again and it is perfect.  I attach some 2x4 for the slats the mattress will sit on.  Bed frame is Done!!!!

By this time it is full on summer, camping, vacations, pools, and BBQ get in the way of working on the bed (there was also a lot of procrastination on my part).  The design I had in my head changed and I really didn’t like where I was going with the legs and how it was going to assemble.  I wanted to make sure that this was going to be strong enough to hold her until at least high school, because at this point in my life I am realistic that this bed is not the last bed she will want or that I will ultimately build for her.  Summer is now pretty much over, I have decided that I am going to attach the bed to the wall.  This leaves me with building something for one end of the bed where she will climb in at.  After a lot of pondering, drawing and…yes I’ll admit it Pinning, I came across a bookshelf that had a pretty slick design and would make a bookshelf and also function as a ladder.  I show it to my daughter, she approved the design.  I go out to the garage and start cutting and assembling.

Long story short, the bed is completed, installed and it doesn’t leave much clearance between her and ceiling but will be at least usable for the next few years.  I don’t have any delusions that she will want another bed as she gets older.  Luckily this was made with inexpensive materials that I can find another use for in the future.

Read more

Loft Bed

Posted by Bill McBeth on

Let me start this post with a story….

It is around 2007 maybe it was 2008, the wife and I are shopping for our (at the time) only daughter.  This was going to be her first big girl bed.  Being new parents we had delusions that if we spend an obscene amount of money for (what we thought was) a quality bed made out of real wood that it would last until college or longer.  HAH! wish I could go back into time and slap myself.  Within the first year the white bedroom set had been exposed to markers, crayons,  stickers, spit, you name it this bed and dressers had it.

Fast forward a few years.  We have moved form our home in Kansas to our new home in Nebraska, this bed has survived well so far and had the stains to prove it.  The bed was sturdy as it should have been being made of real wood.  CRACK…somehow the 50lbs 9 year old broke the bed and split the wood where the rails attach to headboard.  So here I am cursing up a storm, carrying this bed to the garage to get repaired, more upset that I spent as much money on the bed and it broke.  The bed was repaired and back in her room, it lasted another 2 years before it finally gave up the ghost and broke again.  I wasn’t going to repair it again….that is when I decided I am going to build her a new bed.  Problem is I had no time and my workshop was in a complete disarray.

Lets Fast forward again….I keep telling her I am going to build her a bed, she decided she wanted a loft bed.  I was like heck yeah lets build this elaborate awesome bed….hah like I have time for that.  It is March/April of 2015 now, I finally think of a design that I like and she likes as well…Another lesson for you fathers of girls…DON’T SHOW YOUR 11 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER PINTEREST, you will get an endless supply of pins from your tween daughter.  This is great I have a plan, I have a design in my head, I head to Menards and pick through all their 2x6 pine to find the clearest, straightest pieces I could get.   come home with 15 8ft 2 x 6 pine.  I go ahead and start cutting the wood for the bed frame…done!

I go ahead and cut the legs that are going to hold the bed up off the ground, around 5ft off the ground with excess for rails.  I go ahead and assemble the bedframe using my Kreg pockethole jig.  Being the through person that I am and not wanting to get ahead of myself I run up to her room and grab one of the mattresses so I can do a test fit on the frame. The fit was so tight there was no way she could have ever changed her sheets…what did I do wrong.  I go back over my measurements I wrote down, the paper matched was the bed was, the bed frame was 1 1/2” off…DOH!!! I forgot to take in account the width of the material on one side.  Lucky for me the legs that I cut were the exact length I needed, Happy dance.  I swap out the boards, test the fit again and it is perfect.  I attach some 2x4 for the slats the mattress will sit on.  Bed frame is Done!!!!

By this time it is full on summer, camping, vacations, pools, and BBQ get in the way of working on the bed (there was also a lot of procrastination on my part).  The design I had in my head changed and I really didn’t like where I was going with the legs and how it was going to assemble.  I wanted to make sure that this was going to be strong enough to hold her until at least high school, because at this point in my life I am realistic that this bed is not the last bed she will want or that I will ultimately build for her.  Summer is now pretty much over, I have decided that I am going to attach the bed to the wall.  This leaves me with building something for one end of the bed where she will climb in at.  After a lot of pondering, drawing and…yes I’ll admit it Pinning, I came across a bookshelf that had a pretty slick design and would make a bookshelf and also function as a ladder.  I show it to my daughter, she approved the design.  I go out to the garage and start cutting and assembling.

Long story short, the bed is completed, installed and it doesn’t leave much clearance between her and ceiling but will be at least usable for the next few years.  I don’t have any delusions that she will want another bed as she gets older.  Luckily this was made with inexpensive materials that I can find another use for in the future.

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