Recent notes about playing in my workshop:
Old boxes: I don't know why I just like making old looking boxes, like something out of Myst or Riven (my favorite game series of all time) Start with some cheap ass pine, chop in six pieces on miter saw, cut finger joints on table saw, glue 4 box sides together (fingered jointed) then glue top and bottom on, finish outside of the box with oils, stains, wax, whatever (I like to make it look old) then cut box open on a band saw, finish the inside with old stain or tissue paper, apply hinges and clasp... next thing to attempt is carving or sandblasting some old style medieval or victorian patterns or Celtic vinework on the outside of the box.
Sandblasted bottles: I finally hooked up my sandblasting cabinet with a 3 HP compressor. Instead of throwing away some bottles (like Snapple bottles) I just wrap them in masking tape, draw a freaky pattern on the tape, cut away the pattern with a craft knife, put the bottle in the sanblaster and frost a pattern onto the bottle.
Wood stoppers: On the lathe I made a few quickie wooden stoppers for some of the bottles I blasted. First I tried oak, came out alright but oak seems to stiff to make a nice fitting bottle stopper. So I took a short length from a plain maple dowel, mounted it on the lathe, turned out a quick fancy stopper that fit snug and complimented the shape of the bottle.
Bowl turning: I cut the end of a thick maple board, mounted it flat on the lathe bowl turning plate (using a wood mounting plate, brown paper separator, and glue), and turned a shallow bowl. My mistake here was mounting the bowl on the lathe so that the direction of the turn was crossing the grain of the wood so the chisel would get jammed in the end grain and leave a gouge in the wood (and sometimes slam the tool in my hand into the toolrest, ouch)
Table saw: My table saw is an angry bitch. God help you if you the rip fence is not perfectly aligned and locked solid less the piece you're cutting gets snapped out of your hand, ripped to shreds, and thrown back in your face in one loud angry clap. Most unnerving sight I witnessed in a while was friend of mine ripping a long piece of walnut while standing directly behind the end of board pushing it forward into the blade while resting his STOMACH against the end of the board as if tempt my moody table saw to kick back the board and harpoon him right through the mid-section, luckily I was able to cut power on the saw before my friend learned the hard way why it is Norm Abram stands *aside* from the end of a workpiece on the table saw while its in operation. I use the miter saw and band saw whenever possible.
I still have all 10 fingers.