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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Catch A Train

I built another one of the rocking trains. They are called the Rocking Iron Horse. This one is pretty much identical to the one's I have done in the past with very few exceptions. For one thing, I changed the design of the rocker assembly. I had been thinking about the slats on the rockers. Since the train is perfectly suitable for even very small children, I was concerned about those same very little one's getting their tiny feet between the slats. So, with that in mind, and knowing that the span across the rockers where those slats go is a straight line, I decided to exchange the slats for a solid piece of wood all the way across instead. I like the way it turned out and there are no spaces for little one's to get hurt.
Also, most of my trains only have two colors. For this one I used all stains like my others. However, I used three different shades on the train. Then I used a completely different fourth shade for the rocker assembly.
While I'm happy with the previous mentioned changes, I made another not so noticeable change on this one that I'm unhappy with. Since I make very little profit on these, I tried cutting down on some of the labor for this one. In the final assembly process, I normally take extra time to drill and counter sink each hole. Then I glue and screw everything together. After that, I cut short sections of three eighths dowel and plug each and every hole and sand smooth. I still done that for all load bearing and important joints on this one. However, for other joints, for example the slats on the boiler, I used my air powered brad nailer. While everything turned out fine, I just am not happy with it. In the future, I'll go back to my normal method, if only to satisfy myself.