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Building a brace till #18: Small drawer - batwing and Forstner bits

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Blog entry by Dave Polaschek posted 01-05-2022 07:34 PM 825 reads 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 17: First drawer done, starting on the second Part 18 of Building a brace till series Part 19: Small drawer, spoon bits, countersinks, plug cutters »

One more drawer mostly done today. These are both carved into a piece of ¾ inch pine.

First the batwing bits, because I won’t use them very often. They’re nice for making a clean hole it they’re in good shape, but mine aren’t yet, and they haven’t been a priority to sharpen up yet.

Recesses for the larger bits, pieces of bamboo skewers to hold the smaller bits, and a couple ipe knobs I turned from a ¾ inch diameter stick I had laying around so I can life the set out of the bottom of the drawer.

Next is a tray for my forstner bits. Again, carved using three different gouges.

Then I stuck a couple pieces of pine on the ends of that board so it can sit over the batwing bits in the same drawer. I may need to add a handle or I may not. Trying to decide if I’m going to make another tray to hold my plug cutters in this drawer too, but I got hungry for lunch and called it a day in the shop.

Once the glue has had a chance to dry, I’ll cut off the top and bottom of the sides to get the tray of forstner bits fitting perfectly.

-- Dave - Santa Fe



16 comments so far

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

7117 posts in 2713 days


#1 posted 01-05-2022 07:46 PM

Those bat wings (spade?) bits look like antiques 8^)
I’d hate to be someone who offends you when you are armed with one of those in the business end of your crank drill!

Are your Forstners marked in 1/16ths or are they metric?

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#2 posted 01-05-2022 07:53 PM

They are. But they’ve been used hard and resharpened… inexpertly.

The forstners (they’re Freuds but without the wooden case) are marked in eighths, but I think in sixteenths so that’s the numbers I wrote.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Oldtool's profile

Oldtool

3537 posts in 3681 days


#3 posted 01-05-2022 09:05 PM

Coming along nicely Dave, looking good with the double stack in this drawer as the prior.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#4 posted 01-05-2022 09:16 PM

Thanks, Tom! I thought about whether to make two short drawers again, or stack inside the drawer like this. Decided I’d go this way, and maybe squeeze in my plug cutters, too. I’ll decide for sure tomorrow morning when I see how things fit after I cut the stack down to size.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View James E McIntyre's profile

James E McIntyre

1930 posts in 2783 days


#5 posted 01-05-2022 09:44 PM

Dave. Something about your work makes me sad.

Oh I know what is. It’s because I don’t have storage boxes like yours.

Great hand work with the gouges.

-- James E McIntyre

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#6 posted 01-05-2022 10:22 PM

Thanks, James. I still don’t have storage boxes like mine either, though I will soon. My sweetie asked how it was going today, and I told her, “Well, I have three drawers done. But they’re not done because the drawer fronts and handles still have to go on. And I need to finish the insides of the other four drawers, and I’m not sure that’s going to be enough, but other than that, I’m plugging along!”

She responded with, “bit by bit!” and when I started laughing, I had to explain how that was funny because I’m building storage for bits and she looked at me as though I’ve gone senile.

But for a project I was going to wrap up “pretty quickly,” this one is taking a while. I’m 9 days into this most recent bit of work, and feel like I’m still less than half done with this step. Plus once this is done, I need to build doors which will also hold the eggbeaters and maybe some marking tools.

Ah well. It’s sure better than sitting around bored!

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27795 posts in 4596 days


#7 posted 01-06-2022 12:34 AM

Dave , you have quite a collection. I like those old spade bits . They look easy to sharpen….Cheers,, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Eric's profile

Eric

5696 posts in 1363 days


#8 posted 01-06-2022 02:01 AM

Looking good Dave, you are definitely making progress. The bat wing bits as you call them (it’s a spade bit) they do look old.

A comment I make occasionally is “I’m hungry and I can’t concentrate” good time for lunch.

Hears a thought for you, what about a finger hole to pull the tray of bits up. That may allow you more room to add a third one in this drawer.

-- Eric, building the dream. the "Loft"

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#9 posted 01-06-2022 02:15 AM

Thanks, Jim. The problem with them is that at least once, someone sharpened the outside of the spur that slices across the fibers, so I need to narrow the other foot of the bits slightly so they work correctly again (and cut a slightly smaller hole). It’s not the end of the world, but it means that even getting them really cheap on eBay, I might’ve overpaid.

Thanks, Eric. I’ve been calling them batwings to distinguish them from modern spade bits, which have a less graceful shape and two spurs.

A finger hole is a good idea, but the turned ipe handles I put on the lowest level don’t stick up much farther than the bits in the tray do. And if I cut the top of the pieces off on the tray holding the forstner bits, I might have room for a third level. We’ll see tomorrow, I guess.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View MikeB_UK's profile

MikeB_UK

1074 posts in 2525 days


#10 posted 01-06-2022 01:24 PM

Fancy French(ish) fitting ;)

Those center (batwing) bits are the ones I use most, it’s possible they are a lot easier to get over here than there (or at least a lot cheaper).

-- Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

View doubleDD's profile

doubleDD

11371 posts in 3533 days


#11 posted 01-06-2022 01:51 PM

I like the idea of the countersink forstner bit tray. I just have too many of those. 4 boxes = to 1 would be much better. All but a few have been sharpened recently. I should make one of my attache cases for them. I think I will. I have to keep up with the Joneses (Daves).
As kids my brother and I called them batman bits whenever we heard our dad mention them.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#12 posted 01-06-2022 03:13 PM

Thanks, Mike. As I said to someone else, the main problem with those bits now is that someone sharpened them poorly, taking metal off the outside of the spur, which makes them not really work. I know how to fix it, but haven’t set aside the time to do so yet, as it’s fiddly metalwork, which I enjoy less than fiddly woodwork. And they don’t come up too often on eBay, so I haven’t seen another set I just had to have.

I looked at people who just drilled holes and stood them upright too (points up), Dave. Decided I might need to do that if I get some larger diameter bits, but for now an inch is enough for me to start hollowing something, and then take the bedan to it to widen that initial hole. But if I get larger Forstner bits, they’ll only be used on the lathe, so maybe they’ll go with the lathe tools.

I like the idea of an attaché case, though. Have bits, will travel starring DoubleDave!

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View doubleDD's profile

doubleDD

11371 posts in 3533 days


#13 posted 01-06-2022 04:01 PM

Have bits will travel. I like that. Maybe I’ll use that in my next posted case. After all it has a handle.
I’m looking at all the forstner bits now figuring how to arrange them nicely in one case.
I’ll need the thinking cap for this.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

10478 posts in 2072 days


#14 posted 01-06-2022 05:29 PM

Just don’t strain anything putting on the thinking cap. Make sure to take a nap if you feel like you might be overheating the gray matter. ;-)

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View MikeB_UK's profile

MikeB_UK

1074 posts in 2525 days


#15 posted 01-06-2022 06:09 PM


Thanks, Mike. As I said to someone else, the main problem with those bits now is that someone sharpened them poorly, taking metal off the outside of the spur, which makes them not really work. I know how to fix it, but haven’t set aside the time to do so yet, as it’s fiddly metalwork, which I enjoy less than fiddly woodwork. And they don’t come up too often on eBay, so I haven’t seen another set I just had to have.

If you’ve got a drill adaptor, moving it slowly closer to a sanding block should work to fix that (I havent tried it, don’t have a drill adaptor, but it should work, probably :). it is a pain fixing it with a file.


I looked at people who just drilled holes and stood them upright too (points up), Dave. Decided I might need to do that if I get some larger diameter bits, but for now an inch is enough for me to start hollowing something, and then take the bedan to it to widen that initial hole. But if I get larger Forstner bits, they’ll only be used on the lathe, so maybe they’ll go with the lathe tools.

I like the idea of an attaché case, though. Have bits, will travel starring DoubleDave!

- Dave Polaschek

Yeah, I went with the drill holes for the center bits, and just lie the block down to put the drawer away (the ones at the bottom are either duplicates or one I haven’t needed to sharpen), not great as organisation goes, but good storage density.
Although I do like the attache case idea.

-- Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

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