Lockdown Project #3

See my previous posts on my Lockdown Project here and here.

After what feels like years (but was actually months), I’ve finished my bench. I’ve taken much longer than I thought I would, due to laziness and overconfidence in my abilities in equal measures, but I am happy with the result.

The first development since my last post was actually purchasing some decent bolts. I stopped being so cheap, and got some that were more than long enough. With that, I was able to start drilling the holes.

As I had 6mm bolts, I began drilling holes with a drill bit of the same size (after marking where to drill). I soon realised I was making very slow progress, which I thought was either due to the wood being too hard, or that I needed to make a pilot hole. It turns out that the drill bit was completely blunt, which is far from ideal. Luckily I had found three or four different sets of bits, and despite no set being more than half complete, two of them had 6mm bits.

Using a drill bit that wasn’t useless soon had me drilling through the wood with little effort. I did have some trouble with drilling straight through the wood though, which made my work later a little more difficult. In order to line the holes up, I drilled straight through the hole into the metal, and it was when I didn’t follow this practice I had issues.

For the back of the frame I did each hole separately, as I couldn’t hold the wood in place by myself. Because of this, the slightly less than straight (or downright wonky) holes did not match up. Solving this proved easy, by simply drilling the hole again with a slightly larger diameter.

I put each bolt in as I drilled the holes to keep the bench together as I worked. Doing opposite corners helped keep it all straight and fixed together. Only after I had done every hole did I start screwing the nuts on, despite the fact it would have been too late at that point to change where a bolt would go anyway.

Work in progress

At this point I was pretty satisfied with the bench, and happy with the outcome. It was almost finished, and could now actually be sat on. I only had to remove the ends of the excessively long bolts, which was trivial. It took all of five minutes with the grinder, and I was finally done.

The bolts were about 3cm too long

Finishing this project which I had been delaying and putting off was incredibly gratifying. I’ve realised some decent tools make a big difference, especially after borrowing my uncles tools, which made life so much easier for me. If I keep doing this sort of thing, I will start gathering a collection of my own, so I can complete higher quality projects.

I’m pretty proud of what I made, and did actually enjoy making it. I learned a lot working on it, and could hopefully do at least a little bit better next time. Maybe even get it done in a reasonable time frame!

My finished bench

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