Saturday, June 16, 2012

There - I fixed it

You know a blog post is boring when even your mother quits reading it!

In my last post, I mentioned in the beginning that if you weren't a tool geek, you would probably find the info about the tablesaw fence repair rather boring. My mom told me later that in the middle of reading the post, she thought to herself - why am I reading this? (Thanks, mom!)

I'll try to make this a little more colorful...

One of my favorite (time-wasting!) websites is There, I fixed it! It's full of redneck repairs, and sure to keep me hypnotized at my computer for two hours. Here's a perfect example - doesn't everyone need a gas powered flashlight?

So - on to my repair...

Once upon a time, my Lee Valley Journeyman's brass mallet looked like this.

I don't even remember how long I've owned it, but it's been a long time. The handle has been replaced a few times; the last one was made by a Mike, a student of mine, about two years ago.

Imagine your woodshop, but with 30 or 40 people using your tools, day in and day out. You have to accept that the tools will break from time to time. It's just the way things go.

Hell, I break tools all the time, no sense in getting all worked up about it!

So when my mallet head separated from the handle, I knew I had to perform a little magic to it. We use that mallet all the time, so it's couldn't stay broken.

I made a couple of dowels, using my tenon cutter. The grain had to run the length of the dowel, for strength, unlike the plugs we make for cutting boards, in which the grain runs in the other direction.

Hard to see here, but I drilled out the center of the broken handle.

Gorilla glue isn't my favorite adhesive - but for this repair, it would probably be the best choice. Since it's a moisture activated glue, I dampened both the inside of the mallet handle and the plug itself.

This stuff is wicked to your hands - it stains anything it touches.

So I carefully inserted it into the handle, and then put it into a vice, to press it all the way down into the hole.

The next day, I carefully cut off the excess and sanded it perfectly flat.

Of course, I had to pre-drill a new hole, so I measured the distance in between the threads to determine what bit to use.

You want the threads to bite, but you have to remove most of that wood, or you'll just end up splitting the handle.

Almost perfectly centered!

Again, I dampened the wood, squirted some glue inside, and then threaded the mallet head into handle.

The next morning, it needed just a bit of cleaning up.

And now - it should be good as new for another few years!

Another boring repair post, mom!


Vegas Lupe said...

It is great to get feedback from your mom. You know what they say: "Always listen to your mom."

Is there anything you can't fix? :-D

Wood It Is! said...

As a matter of fact - my (home) air conditioner went out last night, and at least I have the sense to call a professional for that! I'm waiting for him right now! :0