The finished project will remain a mystery for now.
Part One, the wheels.
One of the first things was picking out material to work with. In this case I'm going with baltic birch plywood. You might want to reference this post for more details on the plywood I'm using:
This exercise is I think within the reach of almost anyone here with at least some experence. I'm going to use tools I have but I will not try to get to fancy. Step one is to take some of the plywood and make it into parts that resemble a wheel. This wheel will need a precise hole to fit a shaft, be as round as it can be made and have a tight fit in a PVC pipe.
Step one was cutting some blocks of the plywood, you will need three but if you want to practice on a couple feel free to cut some extras. The blocks need to be large enough to cut out a circle of say 3-1/2". (The finished size will be just over 3" so if you want make the wheels a bit closer to that size and you have the experience to feel confident doing so fine). Next you need to locate the place that will be the center of the circle and mark it. Using what ever tools you have at hand draw the circle of 3-1/2" (or less but larger then 3-1/8").
Next you need to drill a 5/8" hole at the center. This hole needs to be really close to 5/8" so make sure the drill you are using produced a 5/8" hole. A Fostner bit is what I used, a brad point bit would work well too... not so sure how a twist drill will do with out doing some extra effort to limit tear out.
Next if you have a band saw or jig saw or some such tool you will need to make the wheels round. I would suggest getting it as round as you can before we go on to the next process. Yes even a hand held jigsaw or coping saw will do. You should end up with something like this:
Close up of one of them (this one is already gone through all the processes):
Next we are going to turn them using the lathe. I used a 5/8" universal arbor to mount the wheel. You need to keep your cutting so that it is a cylinder and not a tapered plug. You will also want to take your time as you get close to the final size, in fact using a sanding disk for the last bit of fine adjustment works quite well.
Please keep in mind these are posed shots, and you may see some things that are not in keeping with safety issues, make sure when you are doing these operations you are doing them in a safe manner.
In the last picture what I did in reality was to move the arm out of the way and use the sanding disk below the wheel. You want the arm out of the way because you are at the finial sizing steps. As mention this wheel needs to fit inside a section of PVC pipe and you want it a nice tight fit. I got it close then sanded and tested and sanded until I got the fit I was looking for. I labeled the PVC ends as A and B and the center as C. As I fit the wheels I labeled them to match the PVC markings so A fit A and B fit B. For C since it was going to fit inside the PVC I got it to just fit then took off just a tiny bit more so it would just smoothly slide in... just a little looser then A and B fits.
It takes a bit of effort to get the fit right just remember to nudge your way up to it.
The next post will finish up the wheel and go on to cutting the PVC.
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