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Some Woodworking

So it’s been more than 20 years since my 7th grade shop class, and while I remember enjoying it, I’ve forgotten just about everything else (sorry Mr. Smith!), which is really unfortunate as I’ve been wanting to do some woodworking—primarly for terrain tables, but also to make shelving and 3D printer enclosures.  So, in my usual fashion, I spent some money on some tools and then tried to figure out how to use them. Thankfully I still have all my fingers and have even completed a couple projects!

My first ‘big’ project (big is very subjective here) was redoing my airbrushing table. Since at least before Adepticon (when I started really getting into 3D design) it’s sat more as a flat surface to store things, then any sort of organized space to paint models. One of the reasons for that was the paint storage issue. I have lots of paints and a lot of paints that I specifically use for airbrushing. I debated getting some of those cool laser-cut MDF paint racks that I use for my brush painting table (yes, I have lots of tables), but as nice as they are, they can be pricey and they take up valuable table real estate.  So I thought that maybe I could make some free-standing shelves for my paints. That, of course, leads to how I was going to secure those shelves to the table. That turned out to be an easy solution, that table happened to be one of those fold-in-half ones that had a really inconvenient crack down the middle, so covering the whole table in a slap of plywood would solve two problems at once. Then, after building the shelves, I screwed those into the plywood top and bam! I had a usable table. I also made a basic light arch (well, light square) that I velcroed two strands of  5050 LEDs to make sure I had plenty of light.


Here I’ve already started cleaning the table off in anticipation of the work to come. And by cleaning it, I mean knocking a whole bunch of stuff on the floor.


Here’s the plywood top on and the light arch screwed into position. As the arch dictated the primary working area, so everything else would have to around it.


Here I’ve already made the paint shelves (they’re mostly level, anyway…) and am screwing them into the plywood topper.


And here the table is 99% done. I had to wait for some LED connectors to run the second strand on the arch, and I added a 3D printed airbrush holder. I also ordered quick-disconnect set-ups for my airbrushes so I don’t have hoses everywhere.


I should have probably stained the whole thing, but I was eager to use it, and chances are good that as my skills get better, I’m probably going to want to redo this. Total material cost for the wood and screws was around $25.

You also might notice I have no ventilation set-up. I did have a small spray booth, but even with LEDs it was hard to see, and just too cramped. There is a window directly above the table that I have a small duct fan in now and I have one of those fancy 3M paint masks. In this case, the houses lack of central air is a blessing, as I don’t have to worry about the fumes and such getting sucked up and redistributed throughout the house.

I made a lot of mistakes on the table, and it’s surely not going to win any awards, but it’s sturdy, it does what I need it to, and gave me some much-needed woodworking confidence. I plan on redoing my other tables to customize them some more, and I’ll probably be making a bench for my K40 laser cutter as well.

Now to build some terrain tables!


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