Getting a jump on the Holidays - In-Law Mill and Shaker

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Project by USCJeff posted 10-27-2012 04:20 AM 1171 views 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Getting a jump on the Holidays - In-Law Mill and Shaker
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I found a hardware kit I purchased a while back that was forgotten until recently. Thought I’d get a holiday gift out of the way early this year. Normally, my shop made gifts are procrastinated and delivered with the finish very much uncured. I made a set for my house a while back out of Rosewood and Maple. I like the idea of a dark pepper mill and light salt mill. Just makes sense to me.

That was the plan here, but my wife said her Mom hates dark toned wood. While I like the contrasting colors better, I do like the matching set made this time fairly well.

Anyone that’s done these knows the drilling is the tedious part. I have a small lathe with an extension. The speed is changed manually by belt. Not the best set up for boring large holes. You more or less (depending on your lathe, the wood, and the bit) just have to keep drilling and backing out over and over. Start with small bits and work up is my suggestion. The 1 and 5/8 inch Forstner bit is hard to use without drilling the smaller diameters to prevent the lathe from stalling. Again, wish I had a more powerful motor.

The salt shakers are much less of a hassle. You only need to ensure the right size for the stopper on the bottom and be careful to get a snug fit for the metal top. The through hole can be anything really. Mine was an inch.

The pepper mill requires much more precision. There are several diameters that must be correct to install the mechanism. I’ve ended up with both pepper mills being about half an inch short of the 8’ hardware. The square bar is easy to cut a but shorter if you do that. Just tap the newly cut end with a hammer a couple times to mushroom it back.

I used a friction polish as well as a wax coat.

and yes, the instructions from Rockler are horrible for this one. I’ve yet to see a review of the kit that didn’t mention that. All you get is a technical drawing. Nothing in regard to order of drilling or methods to secure the piece to the lathe in the various stages.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

3 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117689 posts in 4028 days

#1 posted 10-27-2012 04:32 AM

They both look good.

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4750 days

#2 posted 10-28-2012 02:09 PM

Very nice!

These will last for many generations.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View sedcokid's profile


2735 posts in 4049 days

#3 posted 10-29-2012 01:40 AM

They look great!

Thanks for sharing

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

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