basswood

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A Second Wooden Car with a Different Finish

When I finished my first wooden toy car, my wife asked me to make another one for her nephew. This gave me the opportunity to change a few aspects of the construction.

The first thing I changed was the material. In making the first car, I used some Basswood carving blanks I had purchased from Rockler. While the blanks were extremely easy to work, with basswood is soft and easy to dent. Also the blanks didn't come it one uniform size, so the chances of finding the same sized blanks without having the extra step of resawing was low. So this time I used some SPF 2x6 scrap I had lying around. The pattern I made for the car actually would have fit on a 2x4, but using the 2x6 I was able to move the pattern around more to pick out the best grain with the least number of knots. I also was able to make larger wheels which I felt looked better.

I also wasn't satisfied with the mineral oil finish, it really didn't last. So the second thing I wanted to change was the finish. My sister-in-law is very particular about the toys she lets her kids play with, so to make sure that her son would get to play with the car, I used General Finishes Salad Bowl Finish. I know that most finishes are non-toxic when they dry, but a few extra dollars was worth it so I could point at the label. Read more »

Materials: basswood, dowel, mineral oil, paste wax, SPF, steel wool, urethane

Wooden Car

After seeing the wooden toy cars at my son's preschool, I thought that it would be easy to make some wooden cars of my own. The next time I went to Rockler I picked up some basswood carving blocks. I believe it's used for carving because it is an easy wood to work; it is soft and has consistent grain -- almost like a soft plastic or foam. I thought I'd try to use basswood for the toy car for the same reasons. it's easy to machine and forgiving -- it doesn't take much effort to sand out mistakes. Read more »

Tools: drill press, Forstner, hole saw, router table, scroll saw

Tags: round over

Materials: basswood