Neil's Puzzle Building Blog
21Mar/110

Did I mention wood?

So a little while back I mentioned that the next step for the puzzle project was to create the puzzle in wood. Lego is great for the first prototype and to check that things are working as expected, but without glue, it's not holding together as well as I'd like.

So with my tools at the ready, I set out to create my first wooden puzzle!

Initially, I did use the band saw to cut out one of the pieces for the burr puzzle I designed, but on reflection I found that there were two things that aren't ideal. I currently have 3" x 3" cubes of Douglas Fir. The wood looks great finished, but working with it, I've found a few issues. The end grain is very hard. That means that cutting the wood isn't easy. It seems that the band saw goes through it rather quickly in one 'ring' then the next ring the blade has to work a lot harder. That means that cutting the detailed shapes I need isn't easy. The other problem is that I still need practice!

So I decided to go with a simpler basic 3 piece burr to get some practice working with the wood, and also to get practice until I can find a better wood to work with than the Douglas fir I have just now.

Sorry for the bad picture. I took this quickly with my phone, and really need to take a better picture, but at least you can see the result.

Overall, it's not a bad first attempt. The pieces are snug, and the gaps between them aren't too bad. I'm not going to win any awards, and I'm certainly not going to be selling it any time soon, but I'm happy enough as a start.

Next step is getting back to the main project and putting the puzzle together. Unfortunately, that has taken a back seat as I've had another woodworking project to take care of, which is building some raised vegetable beds for our yard. Still should be able to get back to things in the next few days.

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