Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Plan F

If procrastination was a virtue worthy of an aristocratic title, my family would be royalty.

Well, I'm crafting a Xmas present for my niece. She likes doors. She doesn't have any doors. So I'm making her a door.

I guess I should explain. She does have large doors. Regular life-sized doors. She doesn't have small quaint crafty doors, as in knick-knack doors, little curio doors, if there even is such a thing.

So, I told her I would make her a little door to get her collection started. You know how it goes, once someone starts a collection, people give them things, and that's how you walk into houses that have lots of metal owls, or ceramic frogs, or some kind of collection of things.

Well, the making of the door, which I figured would be a piece of cake, is taking ten times as long as I had planned. For starters, I decided to use some scrap walnut I had. It was very seasoned, meaning really dried out and done warping and bending and twisting and all the shit that wood does once you kill it. It was really nice walnut, until I cut into it with power tools. The power tools just chewed it all right up to an alarming degree. The table saw splintered the crap out of it, even when I did an initial cut across the grain with an Xacto blade to keep it from splintering. The router table chewed into it as if it were balsa wood, so much so that I was a little worried for my fingertips.

So, I was reduced to using hand tools. Which means the elaborate Plan A I had intended for it, with lots of fancy Roman ogee molding and separate panels and a kind of a Barbie Dream Palace look to it all, gave up the ghost. All that shit went right out the window. When was the last time you attempted crafting a molding with a hand planer instead of an electric router? Thought so. Me too.
King of the Wood People

So, Plan B was dropped as soon as I inventoried all the unmutilated remaining wood. I would have to scale the design down. Which meant the bronze fittings I had cast would no longer work as they were now oversized. So, off to the hardware store to purchase hinges and something that would as a door handle for the new Plan C door design.

Oops, wait! I was supposed to incorporate a small key into the mix that my sister-in-law gave me which had some childhood significance to my niece. So, on to Plan D. Quickly made a new fitting out of bronze, cast it, drilled a keyhole in it, and substituted the key and lock for the door handle.

Glued and Clamped
Then, cutting the frame for the door, it turns out the sculpture and design students had somehow fucked up the miter saw and not bothered to inform me. So, a mitered frame is out of the picture.
Now we are at Plan E, which is just a square frame, a plain door, hardware store hinges, no handle, but the key and lock act as the handle. And I have just now glued it up.

Taking a break here to write all this up while the first coat of tung oil soaks.

I will finish it with tung oil and butcher's wax tomorrow. This is the Plan F door. And it looks like a goddamn Fred Flintstone door.

-"it's a place right out of his-tor-y!"

She's getting it anyway!

Plan G would have involved a visit to Hobby Lobby, buy a doll house, trash it except for the little door, and say "Merry Fucking Christmas. Here's your goddamn present".


  1. I laughed out loud about 8 times reading this. In fact, I'm laughing as I write this and will likely still be laughing when I sign off. Happy X Day.

  2. Happy X day to you as well, Zina. and a Happy New Year to all.