The Taradiddle Tribune – 4/8/2014

Taradiddle Tribune Logo Header_9April2014

It was a typical Turning Tuesday yesterday at Codger Lodge. There were doughnuts to dispose of, stories to relate, and projects to plan.pic-set1
Working to complete current projects is a part of every Turning Tuesday.pic-set2
This week we had fine examples of completed projects. Mike Sharps brought his latest segmented urn. Jimmy Morrison had a holly bowl and a natural-edge maple burl creation.
John Smith finished his well-executed laminated fruit bowl, John Wolf turned a flawless lidded box, and Walt Tuttle displayed his fine segmented bowl.

I finished an Adirondack chaise project for the June/July Issue #59 of Woodcraft Magazine.
The ever-helpful codgers took care of the field testing.  I doubt that Tom Sawyer’s methods will entice the codgers to participate in the painting of the chair.

combo pic
The Empty Bowls project was a success. Frank has a follow-up story on the charity event that benefits local food pantries and the codgers’ participation. Frank’s Woodworking Adventures Blog keeps us up to date on woodworking related events and Woodcraft’s involvement, as well as the events at Codger Lodge.

This week after the codgers had called it a day, Mikey and I visited with the Cub Scouts of Pack 129. The cubs have a program similar to the merit badge curriculum of the older boys in Scouting. The cubs earn “belt loops” while learning to be good citizens in the community. Mikey gave the boys insight into the challenges of being handicapped and how he deals with those challenges. The boys had many questions for Mikey and gained a new perspective on how to interact with and assist folks who are wheelchair bound.  The little guy on the left, Shaun, is my grandson. (I had to mention that to maintain my good standing in the Grandpa club.)

The codgers of the lodge, without exception, are generous and enthusiastic when it comes to helping others. I feel privileged to associate with them.

We plan to do it all again next week. Come on down and join us on Turning Tuesday at Codger Lodge.

Mourn the dragons.


I suspect that Jimmy and Henry patronize the same milliner.


The Taradiddle Tribune – 4/2/2014

Taradiddle Tribune Logo Header_2April2014

We do not have quarters for muster to convey the “plan of the day” at Codger Lodge nor a First Sargent to dispense duty assignments and motivational words. Through experience, we codgers have developed a level of situational awareness that prepares us to ascertain what is required and to establish our priorities without supervision. We are capable and self-motivated.
This week at the lodge there were two boxes of doughnuts, a large tray of cookies, a bag of biscotti, a pecan pie, and Girl Scout cookies in reserve. Without hesitation or encouragement, the codgers established a plan to dispose of these sweets and set the highest priority for that task.pic set 1After a furious beginning, the battle subsided, allowing the codgers to regroup, regain their momentum, and continue the cookie campaign at a leisurely pace.pic set 2Refreshed and ready, the codgers planed their Turning Tuesday activities and executed their plans.pic set 3pic set 4_5 The show and tell items reflected the talents of the codgers and codgerettes. Walt Tuttle had a nice segmented bowl and Mike Sharps displayed two of his laminated pieces,pic set 6 Joanie Smith sent one of her excellent pecan pies and Jimmy Morrison brought a segmented piece and a large ambrosia salad bowl for our enjoyment, pic set 7 Gene Smith turned two nice bowls from laminated blanks and Linda Williams baked up a tray of fine peanut butter cookies. The cookies are from one of Linda’s “go to” recipes and they are good,pic set 8

pic set 9This is not another metal sculpture idea from Henry Aglio’s fertile mind taking shape; but rather a random arrangement of Jimmy Morrison’s bowl turning tool rests. While the flowing curves are somewhat reminiscent of Henry’s style, his presentations are considerably more refined and creative.

??????????There are fifty-some bowls in our Empty Bowls collection and they are on their way to be delivered for the charity event. The soup lunch will be held on Saturday, April 5th in Marietta, OH. Frank reported the event in his Woodcraft blog. (Empty Bowls). Thanks to all the codgers who turned and donated bowls to this worthwhile cause.DSCN4287

We are planning another codger convention next Turning Tuesday at the lodge. Come on down and join us.


Mourn the dragons.
pic set 10

The Custom Workbench by Rob Cosman

Recently (left to right below) Jake; Rob’s shop assistant, Dave; Rob, and Rob’s son-in-law, Chris “Frick” Wetmore built this custom workbench.  Frick was more involved on the social media side of things doing site management, videography and editing.  According to Rob, the need for a bench arose when he realized most of his online students were working on the end of their table saw or worse yet, a shop mate!  Rob said, “I have a friend/customer that had been asking me to make him a super-duper bench so what better time!  I use to make and sell benches but the selling price missed the actual cost by a few miles!  I really enjoy making benches so I would entertain making another one.  I bought back a bench I made 12 years ago and recently upgraded it and re-sold it.  Point is, the market may be ready for a few custom benches.  The hardware available has been a real downer so the chance to redesign and have a better mouse trap made was a big motivator.  I ended up having new hardware made for the two benches in my shop plus the one I recently refurbished and sold, made a huge improvement.  I think this latest bench is a bit over the top, I would not want to be the one to make the first “ding” in it!”

(see Rob’s workbench video below) Jake_Dave_Rob_Chris

The bench is made from Mahogany and Hard Maple; all the horizontal Maple surfaces are veneered with ¼” thick Birdseye.  The base is actually Spanish Cedar, looks like Mahogany and a lot less expensive.  It even has a sharpening station!tail vise sharpening station

The bench dogs have “T”shaped slots cut in them and “T” shaped pieces held in place with two springs from ball point pens.  This provides enough tension to hold the dog in place over a greater range of heights.  Works very nice.

bench dogsshoulder vise detail

Rob designed a better knuckle for connecting the threaded rod to the movable vise.  It allows some horizontal movement to account for pieces that don’t have parallel sides however there is no vertical slop.

DSC_0090 improved vise knuckle

Over the top! Nah! Dovetail corners, Mahogany ramp, a tool tray, stretcher wedge…

mahogany and birdseye dovetail mahogany ramptool traystretcher wedge

Adjustable hinged height block features a 3″ lift.  Rob said, “The older you get the harder it is to bend over.  Using a plane it is advantageous to lean over the plane and use your body weight, especially when cutting dovetails.  It is better done at a higher, more comfortable stance.  You want the bench low for hand planing and high for cutting dovetails. Young folks can adapt, older folks don’t want to!  For the finish, I applied several coats of thinned Tung oil on the top and sprayed the rest with lacquer.  I did not want the excessively slippery surface lacquer leaves on the top, also wanted a surface that was easy to repair/refresh.”

bench foot low bench foot high

Here is a brand new video, just YouTube posted at the time of this blog posting, by Rob on the build of this fine workbench…

Online Workshop Involves Both Cosmans
In 2011, Rob launched an online hand-tool workshop that was followed the next year by a second hand/power tool workshop, both projects aimed at reducing Rob’s need for travel away from home allowing him to spend more time with his family.  Jake has been the cameraman for both workshops, as well as doubling as the featured apprentice, working through the hand skills as the student for his dad, the instructor. “I film five days a week. We try to keep the price really low so people can participate,” Rob said.  “I have an online forum.  If someone asks a really good question, Jake goes in and films the answer.  My son-in-law downloads the videos to the website.  We try to make the experience as if the person is standing right there.  The audience likes our casual approach, we don’t cut anything and we work through the mistakes.”  Here is more about Rob’s online workshop program:

Today Rob sees woodworking as an enjoyable hobby, but a difficult career.  He speaks from experience.  A college graduate, he launched a 12-year career as a custom furnituremaker trying to support a growing family.  “I did all sorts of things to make it work. I sold graduation rings.  I insulated basements.”  In 1999, it became clear to Rob that he could never charge enough to make the income he needed.  “I realized that the only people who would appreciate my work were the people who wanted to learn how to do it.”

From Tool Demos to DVDs to Teaching


In 2000, the opportunity to import a line of tools and sell them in Canada led Rob to produce instructional DVDs.  “I recognized as I was selling these tools that many of these people had no experience in how to use them,”  Rob said, “I started making DVDs to help them learn how to use the tools.  As a result of the DVDs, I began to receive invitations to teach.  I now have the perfect scenario.  

cosman products




Teaching is challenging and fun, and I am getting paid to pursue my hobby, which is building furniture.”  Rob also continues to add to his line of premium hand tools. When asked what prompted him to design and make tools, he said: “Guilt!  I was demonstrating to the audience with tools I had either modified or made.  A lot of what I do is made easier because of these tools.  As students recognized this, the demand for my tools became apparent.  I could not find anyone willing to build them so I decided I would have to do it myself.”

To learn more about Rob, his workshops, DVDs and tools, visit and

In conclusion, it is an honor to know and learn from Rob in both woodworking and his views on life in general.  Look for Rob at most Woodcraft shows and stores near you!  You’ll be glad you did.
Thanks Rob, we appreciate all you do!
auf Wiedersehen!…Frank

How to Make Your Own Ice Cream Scoop

Woodcraft’s new stainless steel ice cream scoop is sure to be a great addition to your kitchen utencils. Adding your design shape and material type to complement your kitchen is up to you! Woodcraft has a huge selection of exotic and domestic wood to choose from for this fun and easy project. We’ll walk you through how you can make your very own ice cream scoop handle with just a few hours of your time. Woodcraft has all of the components you will need to build this ice cream scoop. Let’s begin by purchasing the NEW Stainless Steel Ice Cream Scoop Kit, Woodcraft Item #153928. (Click on all photos for enlargement or additional information)


Next, I chose this NEW Curly Cherry Wood (2x2x6 block, Woodcraft Item #154466), which will arrive at your local Woodcraft stores and online in various sizes including pen blanks sometime in October 2012. I chose this wood because of the marbled grain and color details. Our Product Development Manager and wood guru, George Snyder brought this upcoming product to my attention, so I thought it would make a great choice coupled with the new scoop.

Finding the Centers
I marked my centers at each end of the wood block with the ZERO ZERO Center Finder from Woodcraft, Item #02J14 (which happens to be ON SALE July 1st through July 26th, 2012). I like this item because of the see-through visibility to easily find the center accurately by creating lines made from each of the wood block’s 4 corners. I proceeded to punch the center by using an automatic center punch. Woodcraft has a different rendition of the one shown in the photo with the General Tools Heavy Duty Professional Automatic Center Punch, Model 78, Woodcraft Item #416181.

Now it’s time to start creating some sawdust starting with the drill press. Using a machine tool centering bit, I drilled into the pre-punched center mark for the threaded rod hole to be drilled next.

After center drilling, it’s over to the Powermatic Lathe for drilling out a 23/64″ diameter hole for the scoop’s 3/8″-16 diameter threaded rod. You’ll need the undersized diameter drill bit so that the scoop threads engage into the wood when gluing with a 2-part epoxy for later assembly.  Another assembly choice is to use a threaded insert.

Lathe Setup
Pre-measure how much drill length you will need and give yourself another 1/4″-1/2″ depth so you do not bottom out during assembly later, by marking the drill bit (shown left above) with painters tape.

Insert the WoodRiver keyless chuck, Woodcraft Item #152678 (photo below left) loaded with the 23/64″ drill bit into the head stock.

Hold the block of wood (right) firmly against the WoodRiver 60 Degrees Ball Bearing Live Tailstock Center with #2 Morse Taper. Woodcraft Item #149168 (photo above right), located in the tailstock. Using approximately 250-300 RPM spindle speed, drill into the pre-drilled center hole of the wood block by controlling your wood block, fed into the drill bit with the tailstock spindle as your driving force into the drill bit at a slow pace.


After drilling to the pre-measured depth, replace the keyless chuck with a Sorby 7/8″ Diameter, #2 MT Drive Center, Woodcraft Item #145520



Center the wood block non-drilled hole end to the drive center in the lathe head stock. Hold it firmly as you move the tailstock live cone center into the drilled hole end of the block until the wood is firmly held between the two centers. You are now ready for turning.

Rough Turning the Handle
I placed the tool rest at the correct height for using a spindle roughing gouge. Choose the one that you prefer as size is not critical. I started shaping the square form into the desired diameter.

Tenon Cutting & Ferrule Fit
Once I had the round completed, I began cutting the tenon for the ice cream scoop ferrule. Turning down to a press fit diameter is a slow and critical process with many stops and checks to be sure you get the right fit. Remember, once you take material off, you cannot add it back on! My turning tool of choice was the Mini Easy Wood Rougher, Woodcraft Item #845506.

As I got down to the correct diameter, I made sure to include extra material height to go beyond the live cone center, which will need to be cut off later.

A quick tip here. As you are getting down to the required diameter measured off of the inside diameter of the ferrule, create a slight taper on the tenon to use as a press fit as you slide the ferrule onto the tenon.

I temporarily removed the turned stock from the lathe and cut off the extra height with the Shinwa 301/S03.00 Bakuma American Slim Cut Hand Saw 300mm, Woodcraft Item #126312. At this point, press fit the ferrule onto the tenon without any adhesive, just in case a mistake is made going forward in completing the handle shape.

Finish Turning the Handle Design
The design shape is purely left to your ideas and imagination. I wanted something that would be a sculpted fit in my hand when using the scoop with a thumb press fit while scooping the ice cream. Once your conception is realized, you can draw it on paper and transfer it onto the wood or just wing it, as I did! I marked an approximate line as to a radius center for the thumb fit,as shown below.

Once again, I turned to the Mini Easy Wood Finisher, Woodcraft Item #845746.

I proceeded with sanding using the Mirka Abranet 2-3/4″ x 8″ Sanding Sheets, 8 piece, Woodcraft Item #150317. Working my way from 80 grit to 400 grit paper, these sheets allow for non-clogging smooth sanding, leaving you with a fine finish.

After sanding was complete, I used General Finishes Wood Turners Finish, about 8 to 10 coats, leaving a great finish. This stuff dries quickly and allows for repeated coats to be applied. Shine, are you kidding me! Seeing is believing and this stuff really works well!

Bottom Design – Drilling & Turning
We’re not quite done yet! The handle end (left side) has left a center hole and surrounding marks in the wood where the drive center is positioned. I’ll need to face it off or come up with a finish design for that end.

Rosewood Button Plug
Use your imagination for the bottom end design like a coin, marble insert, or perhaps a contrasting wood piece to accent or offset the darker lines in the cherry will give this handle just the right look. I decided on a contrasting piece by creating a Rosewood accent button plug. But first I needed to make the plug hole in the bottom of the handle. Using a 3/4″ diameter Forstner Bit, Woodcraft Item #147069.

I squared off the end with a Crown 3/8″ Spindle Gouge, followed by using a Crown Beading & Parting Tool to shape the button and separate it from the stock. Sand the button plug with the 8 different grit sheets of Mirka Abranet.

Gluing & Assembly
Glue the button plug to the handle bottom and the ferrule to the tenon using Titebond II Wood Glue, Woodcraft #Item #08L43 and press fit both ends with a vice, protecting both sides of the handle.

Three final steps; first applying the System Three 5 Minute Epoxy, 1/2 Pint, Woodcraft Item #124270, to the threads and ferrule area top and hole…

Second…adhere the scoop by threading into the finished handle until the scoop is tight to the ferrule.

I had previously commented about a sculpted fit for my hand. Here is the conception formed into reality.

The last step to perform, time for some ice cream!

Now that you know how to make this project, get to your local Woodcraft store or go online for your ice cream scoop and supplies. Have fun and be sure to share your ice cream scoop designs (and your favorite ice cream!) right here on the Woodcraft Adventures Blog & Gallery.

auf Wiedersehen..Frank!