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Scratch Build – In Progress Addison - Final photos page 6

Discussion in 'Project Logs' started by slipperyskip, 28 Aug 2014.

  1. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    Pull up a chair. :)

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    Drove 240 miles yesterday (round trip) to the nearest Woodcraft store. Narrowed down my veneer choices to these two candidates. On the left is Myrtle Burl and to the right is Mahogany Crotch. Yes....Crotch.



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    The Myrtle Burl is flawless and seems to be easy to work with. The Mahogany Crotch was slightly damaged so I negotiated a 25% discount. It is like a thin sheet of glass shattering at any provocation. How well each negotiates the projects rounded shoulders will be a major decision maker.



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    I've never used a veneer conditioner before so I was willing to try it. Maybe it will help my Crotch and assist both species to get around that tight bend.



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    Laid down a sheet of wax paper to protect the project surface from the conditioner soaked veneer. Made the appropriate bend and clamped it down with scrap plywood. A sheet of paper towel is sandwiched in to help with the drying.



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    Not a dramatic 90 degree curve but it will definitely work. I am currently doing the same with a piece of the Crotch allowing it to dry much longer. It didn't bend as easy when setting up so the extra time might help.



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    Meanwhile, I installed all the equipment including all my new shortened cables. No magic smoke escaped so that's a good thing. Had some issues with fan blade interference that a couple of cable ties took care of. Stressed the system with some benchmarking and it didn't burst into flames.

    So I really want to use the Myrtle Burl because it is unique and easy to work with. However, my renders have all been showing a reddish wood and that is what my eye is used to. I'm afraid the Mahogany Crotch will finish too deep a red. I also like the Crotch because I get to say Crotch. :) Any opinions?

    Thanks for looking!
     
  2. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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  3. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    Awesome crotch you have there.
    ...did I really say that? I've never said that to anything male. I've only ever thought it loudly to anything female.

    For this project, you need a hand rubbed finish, mostly for the pun factor.
     
  4. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    Speaking as someone who spent the morning boiling strips of mahogany in order to get them to bend in 5 inch diameter circle, I commend you on successfully bending that crotch wood. On the other hand, I really love the figure in that myrtle burl.
     
  5. stonedsurd

    stonedsurd Is a cackling Yuletide Belgian

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    I'm a classics man, I prefer the mahogany.
     
  6. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    I suspect the middle area will be burl. Too bad you didn't leave room for a curve on that middle stripe, that would look cool.:D
     
  7. Catarun

    Catarun New Member

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    Your crotchwood looks great! (Wait what?)
    I dont think Ive ever seen such precision in a woodbuild as this. And that mesh slot? I could watch that beauty all day!
    Subbed, and looking forward to seeing that baby wrapped in mahogany! :D
     
  8. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    Your suspicion is incorrect. I think I have something better than another curve. :)

    Thanks and welcome to the forums!

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    I was getting some serious fan noise at idle that I wasn't too happy with. Tracked it down to the Scythe which was surprising. It turns out the problem is with the perpendicular radiator plate. I slid the running fan up for removal and once it cleared the plate the noise disappeared. Very odd. I'm going to sand the sharp plate edges down to make it more aerodynamic. Hopefully that will fix it.



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    Invested in more clamps. Ask any woodworker...you can't have too many clamps.



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    I have a pre-gluing ritual where I simulate the clamping scheme. First step is to assemble the proper sized clamping supports.



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    I never clamp the actual surfaces directly but instead use a support. In this case I'm using an additional support on the opposite side because of holes and some delicate mesh framing.



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    This simulation helps me figure out if I can bring the pain in an evenly manner. This gluing operation will be very difficult because of the curve. Professionals use a vacuum pump system to veneer curves.



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    First step in this veneering job is the inside edge of the vent holes. I discovered that my Tupperware tumbler fits perfectly in the vent hole.



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    Cut strips of veneer and soaked them in water. Wrapped them around the tumbler and secured them with rubber bands. Let them dry for a couple of days. Later, the same tumbler will be used to "clamp" the strips into place. I prepared both mahogany and myrtle strips because that hasn't been decided yet.



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    Prepared some samples to do some testing. These have a single coat of lacquer applied.

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    I'll be doing some masking tape testing. I built and attached a simulated decorative element that will be spray painted. I'm testing two different masking tapes to see if they work well with solvent-based paint and if the adhesive damages the lacquer finish.



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    Burl pr0n for burl fans.

    Thanks for looking!
     
  9. Catarun

    Catarun New Member

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    Thank you kindly sir!
     
  10. Cheapskate

    Cheapskate Insane? or just stupid?

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    Oh, please Sir! Let it be a polished wrap-around grill.:D
     
  11. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    :thumb: But you know the drill. My aluminized wood that I easily pass off as CNC milled aluminum to people who don't actually read the thread. :D

    I apologize for the missed replies to comments. My bad. I blame it on Cheaps.

    ****************************************************************

    If you are allergic to extreme minutia then please skip this update. People have been bugging me for years to do a veneering tutorial. I have resisted because...well...you are about to find out. I was trained to veneer by professional cabinet makers but the process I have developed over the past 12 years doesn't resemble the professional method.

    The difference is driven by the fact that I place no restrictions on my time.

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    Preparing. Got my coffee (black) and my Jawbone Jambox (Project Orchestra) tuned to the Pandora Steely Dan channel.

    I cried when I wrote this song,
    Sue me if I play too long.




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    Sprung the mahogany strips from the Tupperware tumbler. Yes, I'm going with the Mahogany Crotch. I give it a 60% success rate because of the brittle, damage prone veneer and the fact I don't have enough of it to survive an error. Back up plan is to layer the burl on top of it.



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    Great photo of the top of Orchestra. Doh! Auto-focus through a hole. Shows the overlap to be trimmed.



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    Mark the overlap with my 90-year-old mechanical pencil and cut the excess off with my EZ-Cutter. Still left too much...on purpose.



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    Use a 100-grit professional nail file designed to work on fake acrylic nails. Fit the veneer, file some off, fit, file, fit, file until I get the perfect fit.

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    Glue of choice. Common water-based carpenters glue. I like my glue to be fresh.



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    Wet paper towel for cleanup. I apply the glue with my fingers. It is very important to not get any glue on the veneer outer surface because it will show up later when a finish is applied.



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    Very bad photos of glue.

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    One of the major problems with veneering is glue bleed through. That is why I never apply glue to the veneer surface.



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    Tupperware tumbler "clamping" the veneer into place.

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    View from the underside.



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    I get about 15 minutes before the glue sets up. I have developed a process I call clenching. I remove the clamping pressure every few minutes and place it again from a different position. Here I have inserted the tumbler from the underside. By applying pressure from different directions the glue gets "worked in" from the clenching action.



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    During the clenching operation before the glue sets up I take time to sand the gap. This is to generate saw dust and force it into the gap. This helps hide the seam.



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    Let dry for three hours. The excess veneer is still very fragile and will need to be gently trimmed down to about 1mm. I do this by carving with my razer knife.

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    It is important to know the direction of the woodgrain. The grain will either guide the knife blade towards the hole or away from it. Carve in the direction that guides the blade away from the hole otherwise there is a real risk of tearing out a large section right across the wrong surface. Also, the grain can change directions along its length so the carving needs to be adjusted for that.



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    Down at 1mm the veneer is sturdy enough to accept sanding along its edge but not across it. The underside is sanded down flush to the mesh support.



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    This is what I'm trying to avoid here.



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    The topside edge will have another piece of veneer glued perpendicular across the top of it. For these edges I do what I call a Tupperware lip. That's another one of those things I have developed over the years. I take a regular nail file and sand the edge down until it leaves a very small "bump" as felt by fingertip.



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    This is done instead of sanding flush to the surface. The lip forces the overlaying veneer to have positive contact along the entire edge. This creates a much tighter seal along the seam so it can keep moisture out. That's how veneer fails. Another advantage of the Tupperware lip is that during gluing a finger can be run across the edge scraping glue off and pooling it up right where I want it to be pooled.

    And that's it.
     
  12. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    Masking tape testing. On the left is Frog Tape and on the right is 3M 233. After getting the Frog Tape home I read the fine print that its for latex paint only and not to apply it to lacquer. The 3M 233 tape is the same as the 401 tape. Not sure why they have two numbers.



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    After a single coat.



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    5 coats later. The edges of the Frog Tape are peeling up.



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    The 3M 233 tape came up nicely with no residue. The Frog Tape left a small amount of adhesive behind but it came off easily by just rubbing it with a finger.



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    Neither tape left what I would consider a clean line. I figured out that it was because of the angle and the paint that was pooling up in the deep corner. I'm going to have to figure out how to fix this problem. Suggestions? On past projects I have been able to finish these items separately and mate them together at the end. Not this time.



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    Front panel clamping scheme. Pain. Brought.



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    Rear panel. I have to kinda laugh at people building cases out of 1/2" or 3/4" lumber. Are they building a computer enclosure or a step ladder for their fat aunt Gladys? I shouldn't make fun because that's how I also started.



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    The spliced section down below is some scrap mahogany being used as a spacer. A decorative element will cover that entire area.



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    Sanded with 80-grit so the surface is still very raw. I'll edge up gradually to 200-grit before hitting it with lacquer sanding sealer. Then the fun really starts.



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    OK so now I'm just showing off. :) This is the lip on the inside edge of the back panel.


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    Thanks for looking!
     
  13. Maki role

    Maki role Dale you're on a roll... Staff

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    Okay that edge is beautiful :jawdrop:

    Love me some top notch veneer work, wouldn't expect anything less mind.

    As for the tape thing, have you tried it with even thinner coats? I recently did something very similar when painting the tiny rim of an 840 Pro SSD. I usually go with 3-4 thin coats, but I found dropping that down further to 10-15 ludicrously thin coats helped a lot. I was using frog tape for that and it came out really well, might work well here as it would help prevent even the tiniest bit of soak/bleed. Does depend on the spray though, some simply don't get thin enough at all.
     
  14. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    Thanks. I usually go with 10-15 sometimes 20 coats when I'm turning wood into aluminum. I also sand between the first ten coats. I think I got sloppy here because it didn't count. Pretty sure you are right about this. Thanks again.
     
  15. morgansk

    morgansk I've got wood

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    I'm loving this build, your woodworking skills put mine to shame. I did some inlay/veneer work myself years ago (Backgammon board for a girlfriend) but yours is wonderful. How about using French Polish on the case? It's hard work but I've never produced anything better than the work I'm now doing with French Polish. Just a thought!
     
  16. Catarun

    Catarun New Member

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    Unbelievable results. This is gonna turn out amazing! This makes me wanna do a woodbuild as my next project. Its between that and 500 other ideas.

    What im most impressed by though is youre patience. I would have gone all out bananas (and so would Cheaps, but for other reasons :D ) on something making that mahogany fit just right
    .. Great job man!
     
  17. Furball Zen

    Furball Zen Shut up and Mod

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    Mind if i add a tip on the fans? Have the front one sucking in and the rad fan blowing up/out. This way you wont be fighting the heat as it rises and should help you get better temps :)
     
  18. slipperyskip

    slipperyskip Member

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    Thanks. I'm not a big fan of shellac. Hate the way it smells. A high gloss finish would have been required for the burl but I'm going with what I have on hand for this project. Blew my budget out a long time ago. :eeek:

    Thank you. I have mentioned often that patience is my sharpest tool. Cheapest too. :thumb:

    Maybe so but that would be fixing a problem that doesn't exist. Not to sound snarky but I'll be playing Far Cry 4 on this rig not Prime 95. Right now I'm playing Far Cry 3 without the front fan installed and it's not even breaking a sweat. The brutal honesty is that water-cooling an Intel Core processor while air cooling an Nvidia GTX graphics card is bass ackwards and a fairly stupid thing to do. :)

    *************************************************************

    This post is brought to you by Pink Floyd

    Well you wore out your welcome with random precision, rode on the steel breeze.
    Come on you raver, you seer of visions, come on you painter, you piper, you prisoner, and shine!


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    So I have been rethinking my method to finish the wood and aluminum parts. In the past I have finished them separately and later merged them together. The clean line tape test was a failure but I'm thinking that was my fault for not taking the time to do it right. Still...makes me nervous because failure here would be a nasty one.



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    What I have come up with is a hybrid approach. It's too complicated to explain which means I barely have a clue. Works perfectly in my head of course.



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    The continuation of the DE over the back edge has always been one of my pet peeves. I hate it when a radio's decoration just stops at the back edge like it was sliced off. I prefer the optical illusion of a continuation around to the back.



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    Here I have glued together three major parts of the DE. I did this "on frame" so it would be a perfect fit. The trick was to not glue it permanently into place prematurely.



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    This now allows me finish and paint the edges that border the wood surface. I can't completely finish the DE off chassis for reasons not yet apparent.



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    The big problem here is the extremely fragile and delicate structure of this piece. I also have to be wary of any added layers to either mating surface causing them difficulty in being reunited later.



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    I left the lower "layer" of the hole small and unfinished so it could be properly trimmed back and finshed with wood filler and paint. This hopefully will make it appear like a "solid" hole and not one just made up from layers.



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    Rough cut the bumpers.



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    To get the proper curve I used this paint can wrapped in 100-grit sandpaper. It was pure luck in finding the perfect sized can.



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    Thanks for looking!
     
  19. quizz_kid

    quizz_kid Squid

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    Just amazing work as always. The detailed descriptions along your process is also inspiring as hell, especially your veneering techniques. A completely different way of working compaired to my own techniques. The overall design is a beauty!
     
  20. Waynio

    Waynio Relaxing

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    Looking beautiful already, soooo niiiiice. :D:clap:
     

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