In Woodworking Mistakes

Balls Away!

I’m a big fan of Space Balls, those little rubber balls that install in frame and panel constructions to stop rattles and keep the panels centered. I use Space Balls so frequently I buy them by the thousands and keep them in a bin that I store in my parts cabinet.

A few months ago I was assembling a run of interior doors, each containing several raised panels, so naturally, I’d stationed the Space Ball bin on my bench. Unfortunately, as I moved the last assembled door from the bench to my clamping table, it clipped the bin and knocked it to the floor.

Instantly, my shop was filled with Space Balls zinging in every direction, just like those crazy Super Balls from the ’60s. I spent the rest of the morning recovering the little suckers, which ended up in every corner of the shop, and to this day, I’m still finding holdouts.

Mark Claypool

Fiber Finish

After sanding the walnut bead loom I’d made for a friend, I discovered I didn’t have a tack cloth to wipe it down prior to finishing. So I used one of those disposable floor-duster cloths instead. It removed all the dust and seemed like a perfect tack-cloth substitute … until I noticed micro-fibers snagged all over the loom.

I sanded again and thoroughly wiped the loom with a T-shirt. Then, thinking I’d removed all the fibers, I applied the first coat of poly.

But there they were, still, tiny vein-like fibers covering every surface. My friend now has a beautiful bead loom that looks somewhat fuzzy.

Dean O. Travis

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