My Goth Spool Holder

With some spare pieces of 2×4 after the sawhorse build, I started thinking of a small project I could do to use them up. After some quick brainstorming, I decided to build a spool holder for my spools of wire and solder. The idea was to have a base with two side pieces holding up a dowel which the spools would be placed on.

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The pieces were fairly short so I glued two of them together to form a decent sized base so that the holder would be able to fit more than one spool.

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While the base was drying, I got to work on the side pieces. I drilled a 3/8″ hole through both sides which the dowel would pass through.

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Things started to come together once the base and sides were ready. All that was left was to figure out a way to be able to take it apart so that I could replace a spool once it’s empty. The idea I came up with was to have one fixed side while the other would be able to pulled out with the dowel attached to it.

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I needed a good way to lock the detachable piece into the spool holder. I decided the best way was to have short pieces of dowel lock the side piece to the base. To do that, I drilled more 3/8″ holes through the base and a short way up into the bottom of the side piece.

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For some reason, I thought painting it all black except for the dowel would look cool but it wasn’t how I imagined it. The Goth Spool Holder name for it sort of stuck in my head after this…

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Here it is in its place on my soldering work station.

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It came together quite well. I’m especially happy that the spool of solder rolls smoothly enough even with its weight and how tight the four spools fit on the holder.

Thanks for reading!

I saw a sawhorse

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Ok, so I’m too impatient to take progress photos. I gotta work on that.

I was looking around on the internet for simple saw horse designs and this is the one that showed up the most often. Basically, you make an I-beam out of 2×4’s and that figures out the angles automatically. I decided to make all pieces of the sawhorse 30 inches, instead of the slightly longer beam that other plans had. After some hacking away with my handsaw, they were complete.

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I used a mitre box screwed onto the first saw horse to do the cuts for the second one which gave me much more even cuts. The cuts all around are still rather rough and don’t measure perfectly so the horses have a wobble to them. Nevertheless, they can support my weight when I sit on top of them and are stable enough for my needs.

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With a piece of plywood, I have a very good sized work table that can be stored away relatively easily when I’m not working on anything.

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The first project on my new work table was to fix a broken wheel on the vaccuum cleaner.

There are a couple more wood projects coming up and then I’ll be going back to a new light show. Stay tuned and thanks for reading!

A new year. A new shelf and table!

A year ago, I was excited to make small improvements to my work space. Even though those efforts helped, they were cheap “band-aid” fixes that I wasn’t completely proud of. This time around, things are looking cleaner.

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I bought the large 5-shelf unit from Home Depot on boxing day. Each shelf has a category of sorts, though I’m having a hard time sticking to them. The top shelf is for completed projects. The shelf below it is for tools, specifically more for any power tools that I have. The middle shelf is for components. The shelf below that is for scrap components (like circuit boards to take apart) and incomplete projects. The bottom shelf is miscellaneous storage, like for product boxes and consumer products in line to be stripped apart eventually.

The smaller black shelf beside it is what was storing everything before. Soon enough, it will be more bare than it is in this picture.
20160117_111335The other improvement to my work area is a new soldering station table top. Before, it was a piece of cardboard on top of a plastic rolling storage shelf. This new table is still held up by the plastic shelf, but is made out of plywood for a sturdier and larger surface to work on.

I got a piece of scrap plywood from work. I ran over to Lowe’s to get a strip of wood to cut into pieces to make a border. To put the border together, I used wood glue and set the pieces into place with a couple of clamps.
20160118_172108This is the final table. The piece of plywood I got was laying around so it was kind of dirty. Although it didn’t look all that bad with the borders on, I decided I would rather have it painted. I had some white acrylic paint from the dollar store so I applied that to the surface and front edge of the plywood. The wood border pieces that I purchased were too pretty to paint over so I left them untouched.

Building this table has me inspired! My next project is to build a couple of sawhorses, which I definitely want after struggling to cut the pieces of wood in this project awkwardly on a couple of cardboard boxes.

Thanks for reading!