Other eZine readers had additional tips for the questioner in last issue’s Q&A section who wanted to know how he could keep his table saw top from rusting. – Editor
“Suggestion for helping to prevent rust on table saws, band saws, etc., with cast-iron or steel tops: Avoid blowing off sawdust with your breath. It contains water vapor with enzymes that can attack the metal surfaces. (That’s what they are supposed to do with the other,regular organic things they come in contact with in your mouth — help break down the food.) I have a pattern of corrosion dots on my cast-iron band saw table that matches where my breath went when I used to blow off the dust myself. Now I use protective coatings and a brush and the corrosion battle is less of a hassle. I also cover my machines when finished with old cotton sheets that seem to help, too. – Tom Triola
“In your latest Woodworker’s Journal Ezine in the Q&A section, the question was brought up regarding a table saw and rust. The answers were great, but I go one step farther. I have some fluffy terry towels I cover my equipment with. I can’t remember where I read this tip, but since I started doing this my rust problems have been minimal and greatly reduced. Since I am in a high mountain desert area I don’t have the humidity problem in the summer. The winter, though, can provide some high humidity times. Prior to doing this, my spring ritual before I could start working again would be to clean the rust off of my equipment. Now I just tuck my equipment in for the winter and they are rust-free when the weather allows me to go back to work. I hope this helps someone else.” – Parry Smith
Log-Sided Building Finish Option
Another reader also had experience with trying to find an appropriate finish for a log-sided building — another question in eZine 317’s Q&A section. – Editor
“I was faced with the dilemma faced by your reader, Frank, relative to his log-sided building. I was dismayed to find that the spar urethane finish on a playhouse I had constructed was gone over the winter. We live in Canada in Sarnia, Ontario — just north of Detroit. I am a sailor, and I talked to a marine store about marine varnish and what other finishes that might be available. I was told it was their opinion that nothing they sold, including spar urethane, was sufficient to last longer than one year.
“I had heard of Bristol Finnish through Wooden Boat magazine. Bristol Finish advertise that their product will last 4 to 6 years, depending on the environment. The stuff is very expensive, but I did not want to have to apply a further coat each year, and so I bit the bullet and spent the wad, which is about $200.00 per gallon. The answer is the stuff works. Bristol Finish may be applied approximately every two hours and can be applied, it appears, over most other finishes. The stuff would appear to be self-leveling and, as I recall, you need not sand between coats, so long as you put later coats on right away. I have obtained several years out of the stuff. It adds a slight amber tone to the wood (at least the type I purchased) which, if anything, would add to the luster of a log building.
“A word of caution, do wear an organic vapor mask — not a dusk mask — when applying it. I looked at the specs, and the stuff appears to be quite scary. I am not connected to Bristol Finnish and no one that I know is either. It is just a great product, but requiring care to your person in applying it.” – Paul Beaudet
Keep on Truckin’
And we heard from readers who liked Rob’s eventual choice of a wooden Christmas present made for his granddaughter. Note: the plan for the truck will be forthcoming. – Editor
I loved the photo of the truck. I can see your granddaughter playing with it. Any chance that you would share the pattern? My husband and I make pull toys, puzzles, and an occasional car or tractor for the neighbor’s children for the holidays. We have never done an open-backed truck.” – Carol Lawrence
“Are you going to publish the plans for the truck? And yes, I got a kick out of making my grandsons wooden toys, but after a year or so I have been banned from making any more toys for them as they have too many toys! So I have been making for sale.” – Bill Ellis
“Any time one allows a child to explore their own interests can only build their self-esteem. You did good.” – Elaine Duff