Restoration Project

Every time I got my haircut I looked out to see a dilapidated barber pole out by the road of the shop where I have my ears lowered.  I finally asked if I could upgrade it a bit and got the OK to fix it.

This is what it looked like before the restoration.

It’s amazing what a little fresh paint and a little effort can do.

Here’s a closer look in my shop before I returned it.

Just a little project to occupy my time between haircuts.

Pasta/Noodle Roller

This is how egg noodles were made “back in the day” before they were mass produced and available on your grocer’s shelf.  By varying the distance between the cutting ribs you could make anything from spaghetti to fettuccine to wide egg noodles.  Depending on the recipe for the dough you used you made pasta or egg noodles.

Starting with a glued up, laminated, turning blank of hard maple (Cherry, Walnut, etc.) it isn’t a hard project, but does require some precise turning to make it work.  I took the corners off on the table saw to save some time on the lathe.  I wanted the finished piece to be about 19″ long with the handles so I made the blank a couple inches longer than that.

The first step is to just make the whole thing round  with a roughing gouge, which doesn’t take too long.  You want to get it close to the same diameter the full length of the piece.

Next I did the a handle on each end using whatever tools I found necessary.  A large skew, a small skew, spindle gouge, and parting tool.  Then took my time sizing the main barrel of the roller to make it precisely the same size from one end to the other.  This is necessary to have the “cutting blades” all contact the work surface at the same time.  The final touch was to use sand paper on a wood block to get it exact.

The last turning step was to lay out the cut outs for the noodles and remove the material between the cutting blades.  I made this one to make 1/2″ egg noodles, with each blade being 1/8″ wide at the base, tapered to almost a point where the roller meets the work surface.

The tapering to almost a point is precise turning with a small, sharp skew.

Final sanding and the turning is done.  Removed from the lathe and checked on the top of the table saw shows the “blades” all meet the work surface at the same time.

The handles are accented with five shallow turns accented by holding a steel wire against the wood turning on the lathe which burns the accent into the wood.  Simple but elegant addition to a wood turning like this.

Finally the excess material is cut off with the chop saw.  I know some people just use a parting tool to do this but I’ve had things go flying doing it that way.  A little hand sanding finishes the handles.

The finished raw wood is nice looking and then doing three coats of walnut oil really makes it look great.

Now where did I see that recipe for the perfect egg noodles?

Some of My Projects

Sometimes I get doing something and forget to take pictures as I work.  Here are some of the items I’ve built, just the finished items.  If you want details on any of these things feel free to contact me.

First, a set of coasters:

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A laminated and hand turned lamp and lamp shade, all done by yours truly.  Includes a dimmer socket with LED bulb:

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My Christmas Train, about 50″ long:


A magazine rack:

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A large savings bank, laminated and hand turned:

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Some of the Passive Speakers for I-Pod, I-Phone, etc.  Uses no power and amplifies the sound really well:


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A twin bed for the spare room, the first picture is the bed assembled, but not finished.  The second is the bed finished, but not assembled.  Using slats means you don’t need a box spring or foundation:

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These were just a few of the projects I’ve been doing.


Wooden Spoon


This was just something I wanted to make.  No real reason except that I never made one before.  It started out as a leftover piece of hard maple wood.  I cut it in half to make two spoons, which I did.  I kept one and have one for the table at the next craft fair.

After cutting them to size, the fun begins.

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The marks on the end of the wood finds the center of the piece, important to mount it on the lathe later.  Meanwhile, I drew a rough outline to remove some of the wood for the handle and to rough shape the piece.

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I made both “blanks” at the same time.  Marking and using a sharp punch to make a center hole to mount each one on the lathe when the time comes.

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Once on the lathe it was just a matter of shaping the spoon part and the handle to a desirable shape.

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Next it was just a trial and error method of scooping out the wood to form the bowl of the spoon.  I used the drill press and a forstner bit to do the bulk of it, then used a sharp chisel to finish the shaping.  After it was really close I used coarse to fine sand paper to finish it up.

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Because I plan to use it and not just display it, the finish used is just a number of coats of the right oil.  I used coconut oil on this one, which is one of the recommended oils for such an item.  It doesn’t get rancid at room temperatures.  Walnut oil is also a good oil to use for wooden cooking utensils.


I’ve since finished the second one and have been using it in the kitchen.  Very nice because I shaped it to fit into the round edges of our cookware so it stirs things very well.