New Gameboards for my Etsy!

Got the itch this weekend to get back in the workshop and finish up some old projects. I had cut the playing fields for these boards a while back, but never finished them. Probably a little discouraged when the first board took so long to sell. After getting an order for a new board, and a good idea for playing pieces, I took the dive and finished these up. All four boards have a maple and walnut playing field, but each one has a unique border and are available now in my Etsy shop.

Three are wrapped in cherry, with white oak inlays around the board. Something new I had not tried before. The fourth is wrapped in mulberry, with no inlays. Finished with oil, lacquer and wax. Pieces are black and white simulated stone; great finish, feel and weight to them.

Board 1 in Cherry and Oak Inlay with round corners.

Board 2 in Cherry and Oak Inlay  with round corners.

Board 3 in Cherry with Oak Lattice and square corners.

Board 4 with Mulberry frame and square corners.


What I’m Reading: Why We Make Things and Why It Matters by Peter Korn

Not a full book review, but I’m reading Why We Make Things and Why It Matters by Peter Korn. The most striking parts of this book are reading the actual genesis of my favorite hobby, woodworking, in America. I grew up in a time where watching New Yankee Workshop on PBS was a given. Woodworking was a viable and available hobby, with supporting magazines, TV shows and shops; but Peter Korn relives a time when tools had to be ordered from England, and the skills of the trade had to be relearned. Today, I appreciate the instant availability of information and experience that YouTube provides! If you are interested in Maker Culture, this is the beginning.

Also available in a Kindle Edition!

Milling a Custom Threshold

Over Memorial Day weekend, we installed a new solid maple floor in a room in our house. More on that process here. What was left was a slight mismatch between the 130 year old narrow-strip oak flooring and the new floor. Instead of buying a threshold to match the new floor, I opted to build one that would tie the look of the old floor into the new.

The gap between the surfaces was about 5/8″ so typical 1x lumber wouldn’t leave enough thickness; so I dug into the scrap pile and found a remnant of an old barn beam I picked up and had resawn to 5/4″ thick. The grain and pores in this piece look like Chestnut; but I’m not certain. The first step was to joint, plane and square up the board into an appropriate blank; about 5/4″ x 4″ wide.

With the blank milled, I marked out the rabbet to match the floor. The depth is critical for a good fit, but the width is up to the aesthetics. I chose this size to not overpower the trim around the door and still leave a good surface to contact the original floor… it’s all eyeballing. Same goes for the taper; I think this is about 20 degrees, but I knew where I wanted it to start and end based on my own application. I set the table saw blade to match my lines and ripped away.

Using a router to round off the corners wasn’t an option, because none of the surfaces are square to each other. I used a block plane to dress the edges to my liking and sanded slightly. I keep a low angle block plane handy for quickly dressing the edges on pieces like this, and with some practice you can make a very even round-over. A quick coat of Danish Oil and Wipe On Poly and I was ready to install.

Fitting the threshold around the door frame trim took some careful measuring, but simple straight cuts using a pull saw gave a great fit. Held down with some ring-shank nails and filled the holes – and this project is done!


Tools used in this post: