Ben Lippen

Whatcha up to?

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I'm hoping everyone else is a busy as I am. Lotsa projects.  I'm looking forward to getting back in the shop in week or so to make a few things. Got two nice little builds to do.  Be nice to not deal with anyone for awhile :) 

So, what are you working on?

 

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I just got a new VFD for my mill/drill that can take the external controls I like, moved the old VFD to my pedestal buffer, and ripped out my 22 year old DIY rotary phase converter. Now I have 4 VFDs for the machine tools. Weekend project is to take the 4 pole contactor from the RPC, hook it up to the light circuit, and have it turn off the VFDs and the 220v compressor when the lights go off.  No more hearing the compressor cycle in the middle of the night! 

 

Next I have to get back to that stupid doorway project in the rental. I finally got the cell phone & wifi based video intercom system up and running perfectly, now I have to get rid of several layers of crap in the threshold and drop the whole doorframe 1 1/2". After that I can rehab the walls ,floor and ceiling of the little foyer and restore the long gone interior casing and pediment.

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My dad gifted me almost all of his machines and tool cabinets recently as his hands don’t work as well as they used to. He simply can do the things he once did and is worried about injuring himself. So I hired a moving company to move the stuff out of his basement, which they did today, and then delivered into my workshop in the barn. I’m looking forward to doing some rearranging and getting some schooling from dad on the usage of them. He’s been a woodworker for decades where I’ve just taken it up in the last year or so. Passing the torch I guess...bittersweet.

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Renovating a room at my stepsons' house.  Previous owner had crafted a built-in captain's bed-  drawers, ceiling soffet with recessed lighting, drawers underneath, etc.  Nice and worked well for the 6 year old grandson, but it's now time to share that room with his little brother as a 3rd grandson is on the way.  So captain's bed got torn out which means drywall repairs, new flooring and molding, some electrical rework and new paint.  Maybe half-way through it.  I'm reminded how little I enjoy doing drywall work!   Although I will say that today I found that the low-dust drywall compound seems to actually work.  A bit tougher to feather it out but my knife skills arent' great and rusty.  Did some sanding today and seems to be lower dust.

 

This project has reminded me how much practice makes perfect.  I usually figure the little tricks out just at the end of a project....

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16 hours ago, rathrbefishn said:

I'm reminded how little I enjoy doing drywall work!

Amen Brother! There's some things I'll never enjoy no matter how much I have to do. I've had wavy walls with unkeyed horsehair plaster on wood lath that I've had to screw down with a hundred plaster washers and then basically sculpt flat with Easysand. What a mess.

 

You couldn't just turn the captain's bed into a bunky?

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We've been so busy at work that I havent had any time to work on anything.  Finally got 2 penn reels rebuilt that I started last summer.  Have another one I'm starting next week that needs to be done by Feburary 29th.

 

Other then that I havent gotten anything done I wanted to this winter.  Havent even finished stuff on my new truck that I started after christmas.  

 

6 day work weeks dont leave much time 

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7 hours ago, gellfex said:

Amen Brother! There's some things I'll never enjoy no matter how much I have to do. I've had wavy walls with unkeyed horsehair plaster on wood lath that I've had to screw down with a hundred plaster washers and then basically sculpt flat with Easysand. What a mess.

 

You couldn't just turn the captain's bed into a bunky?

That was the original plan.  But the original design had the drawers underneath and the bottom of the bed was right around 2" off the floor.  When you put in 2 mattresses of reasonable thickness and a couple of inches for the upper bunk support suddenly there wasn't much headspace for either bed.  Still would have had to tear out the bulkhead and do drywall work. I also looked at putting in an L-shaped bunk but the drawer layout wasnt' all that conducive. We discussed options and my stepson and his wife decided upon just removing it and putting in twin beds-  the little one is a bid of a daredevil and they aren't sure he woudnt' be leaping off the upper bunk!   I'm the guy that executes the projects-  their house, they get to make the call.  Will likely be better for them for resale in a few years as they have another room with another captains bed.

 

Today was sanding off the near final coat of mud.  Probably sanded off 1/4 or 1/3 of what I had put on the wall...

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20 hours ago, rathrbefishn said:

Today was sanding off the near final coat of mud.  Probably sanded off 1/4 or 1/3 of what I had put on the wall...

Then you put on too much! The art is to never sand until very lightly at the end. Thin coats, then scrape off the high spots with the joint knife (called "tooling"), repeat until a light sanding to blend the compound to wall  and get rid of "artifacts" is all you need. There's guys that don't even sand, just use a damp sponge to blend and call it a day.

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3 hours ago, gellfex said:

Then you put on too much! The art is to never sand until very lightly at the end. Thin coats, then scrape off the high spots with the joint knife (called "tooling"), repeat until a light sanding to blend the compound to wall  and get rid of "artifacts" is all you need. There's guys that don't even sand, just use a damp sponge to blend and call it a day.

Oh I know the theory!  It's just that I only do more than a little bit of patching every 5 or more years!  So getting the compound that right consistency, angling the knife correctly, having enough but not too much mud on the knife, etc just seems to take practice-  I got it right just at the end of this project. It's one of the skills know I could get better with practice....just not sure I want the practice:)  Primed the wall this afternoon and it all looks pretty good- in fact better than much of the rest of their house.  The low dust stuff really works-  but at least for me it didn't feather quite as easily off the knife as the standard compound. Didnt' make a much mess though. 

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7 mins ago, rathrbefishn said:

Oh I know the theory!  It's just that I only do more than a little bit of patching every 5 or more years!  

Yeah, I know that syndrome well. Welding is like that for me, if I ever had to do it for a month I'd be great, but I do a piece here and a piece there, and never really get anywhere. Sadly for me, wallwork is something I've been forced to learn being a landlord. What I'd really love to know is how to truly float and skimcoat genuine plaster wall, but I think that's what 10 year apprenticeships are for. There's some things where nothing substitutes for experience. I was telling that to my daughter while teaching her to drive the other day!

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Built a flatbed for my truck. Commercially made beds just didn't fit my needs. I needed a toolbox so I could reclaim my back seat and I wanted easy access to the driveshaft, fuel tank, shocks ect. I have arthritis and don't relish climbing under the truck to fix things. My solution was a bed of PT 2x10's with cletes  on the underside so they're just held in by gravity. I built the bed on boat stands so I could just back the truck under it when it was done. My old bed was beat up and not worth selling so I put an ad in the paper. FREE PICK UP BED TAKE IT OFF AND IT'S YOURS. In a week the bed was gone. Future plans call for a fabricated bumper but enough for now.

Z3 BUILDING RAILS.JPG

Z4 FITTING TOOL BOX.JPG

Z5 SLIDING TRUCK UNDER BED.JPG

Z6  DONE.JPG

Z7 DONE.JPG

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4 hours ago, epanzella said:

Built a flatbed for my truck.

Looks great man!

I gotta do something before my rusted out bed falls off on the highway.

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