7 May 2017

Resizing Wood for Miniatures

This week I've begun replacing the front framing in new lumber and started a dry fit of modern folding doors in scrap MDF.  The next couple of posts will look at both making the lumber for the build and making the folding doors.

I decided to make my own wood cuts for this project.  One to get the colour and grain I want, and two because hobby shop wood is limited near me.  I went to this hardwood supplier and found some great 'roasted' maple lengths in both medium and dark.
In order to create proper scale for miniature work I'm re-sawing my lumber with a table saw.
Here's a quick break down of my process (you can Google re-sawing with a table saw for more info! And if you try, always use safety precautions!!)

This is what I start with:
1) I use an electric jointer/planer to smooth down the edges of the 1"+ thick board
2) then raise the tablesaw blade up extra high, and cut once down the middle (shown below)
3) then I flip the board over and cut again
4) after that I use a bandsaw and slice down the middle where the two cuts didn't quite meet, giving me a sheet (my bandsaw isn't strong enough to cut through the entire board without the tablesaw cuts)
5) finally I use an electric planer to smooth everything down and continue until the boards are the right thickness (the planer is shown below)
I am then left with a sheets suitable for ripping down into smaller pieces of lumber.  The ones below were planed down to 1/4", but I've also made thinner ones. This whole process takes awhile!
The next step is ripping down the lengths.  I decided to cut 1/2" widths off to create my framing boards.  Because this isn't too narrow I was able to use the fence, but when I cut even narrower for my floor boards I will need to use a thin rip jig.
The final strips are trimmed down to the necessary lengths - and ready to go!
Next time I will post about making the folding doors. I'm trying to decide on the right colour.  My plan is to have the majority of the house in the medium maple... I've seen a lot of black contemporary folding doors, but I'm not sure if that is going to be too contrasted... we'll see!
Have a great week everyone!

8 comments:

  1. When I read that you were making your own wood....first thought was, of course she is!! You never cease to amaze!

    I have to find one of these wood stores near Toronto. I was lamenting about that today to my poor husband!

    But, if you want an awesome (and I mean awesome) selection of very thin veneers, Lee Valley sells them. The big order ships in a large pizza box. It's veneer heaven.

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    1. Thanks Kat, there is actually a Lee Valley store 15 minutes away from me! I forgot they sold veneers! I used to think they were really expensive...but now that I think of it, they're not that much different in price then the hardwood I bought.
      I'm sure you'll be able to find a spot in Toronto, maybe do a search for specialty hardwood stores there? It's honestly hard to tell if they'll have what you need until you are actually there. Hope you find a spot!

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  2. Look at you with all your big girl toys :0D I can't wait to see your folding doors in that beautiful maple :0)

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    1. I figured it was time to try the big tools out! I found it's a bit of a learning curve to scale woodworking techniques to this size.
      ....Honestly I'm a little worried of turning this place into a giant maple box! ;) But I think the doors will be pretty too, thanks Pepper!

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  3. That maple is gorgeous. I have serious tool envy. Looking forward to the next post, I love to see the process.

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    1. Thanks Keli, I'm loving getting to try something other then white Basswood. As for tools I know I'm super lucky, my Dad does furniture building as a hobby so I have a full workshop to use.
      I have noticed a lot of community workshop/maker spaces popping up in cities, maybe one is near you?

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  4. Wow! Very impressive setup! :D

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  5. Wow, Kristine! This is going to be a true architectural model! I'm so excited to see the progress and the finishes you decide on!

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