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All About Guns What's your weapon of choice, and why? Discuss the beloved speargun here!

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Old 03-13-2017, 11:41 PM   #1
cougarprey
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First gun build, thoughts and pics

Hello all,

I see a lot of people in the past have posted a "timeline" of their builds and I have found them very helpful while doing research about the subject. I thought for my first build I would do the same, maybe someone will be able to extract some info when their time comes and hopefully when I have a question some with better experience can chime in.
I have no specific carpentry or wood training, but I have a DIY streak in me and I tend to be thoughtful and meticulous. I have a notebook and have been keeping notes and diagrams as I work out the process in my mind and read through the forums.
My original plan was a 60" teak midhandle, enclosed track, 5/16 shaft. I know this is a bit much for a first build but I already have a 42 'noreaster and a 48 and figured why not.
After finding a place with teak and seeing the cost, around $250, I decided maybe teak isn't the best idea for a first try so ended up with two very straight pieces of mahogany.
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I also have a 4 foot piece of white oak that I hack on before proceeding with the mahogany.
I ripped lams of the white oak a week ago
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and today after work I ripped the mahogany. On one of the cuts in the mahogany, the blade hit some seriously hard wood as I got too close to a knot and although I kept the wood against the fence, the wood actually started to bend the blade and wander of course.
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Abandoned that piece and moved to the other one. I ended up with 6 lams, 1 extra just in case, vernier caliper says they vary by about .02 inches in thickness. The mahogany was noticeably harder to cut than the oak.
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We have a whopper storm coming to MA tomorrow so I will be home and hope to epoxy the oak with west systems 105 and 206 hardener after sanding. I bought a rotary planer for my drill press and rigged up a feed table, it worked great on the oak.
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Some of the mahog lams, once ripped, immediately curved or bowed. I am debating my options on how to pair them up and how much i should try to force the bowing out when they are epoxied. More to come. Hopefully the pics come through.


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Old 03-14-2017, 08:59 AM   #2
captain.ed
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Quote:
Originally Posted by cougarprey View Post
Hello all,

I see a lot of people in the past have posted a "timeline" of their builds and I have found them very helpful while doing research about the subject. I thought for my first build I would do the same, maybe someone will be able to extract some info when their time comes and hopefully when I have a question some with better experience can chime in.
I have no specific carpentry or wood training, but I have a DIY streak in me and I tend to be thoughtful and meticulous. I have a notebook and have been keeping notes and diagrams as I work out the process in my mind and read through the forums.
My original plan was a 60" teak midhandle, enclosed track, 5/16 shaft. I know this is a bit much for a first build but I already have a 42 'noreaster and a 48 and figured why not.
After finding a place with teak and seeing the cost, around $250, I decided maybe teak isn't the best idea for a first try so ended up with two very straight pieces of mahogany.
Attachment 231850
I also have a 4 foot piece of white oak that I hack on before proceeding with the mahogany.
I ripped lams of the white oak a week ago
Attachment 231851
and today after work I ripped the mahogany. On one of the cuts in the mahogany, the blade hit some seriously hard wood as I got too close to a knot and although I kept the wood against the fence, the wood actually started to bend the blade and wander of course.
Attachment 231852
Abandoned that piece and moved to the other one. I ended up with 6 lams, 1 extra just in case, vernier caliper says they vary by about .02 inches in thickness. The mahogany was noticeably harder to cut than the oak.
Attachment 231853
We have a whopper storm coming to MA tomorrow so I will be home and hope to epoxy the oak with west systems 105 and 206 hardener after sanding. I bought a rotary planer for my drill press and rigged up a feed table, it worked great on the oak.
Attachment 231854
Attachment 231855
Some of the mahog lams, once ripped, immediately curved or bowed. I am debating my options on how to pair them up and how much i should try to force the bowing out when they are epoxied. More to come. Hopefully the pics come through.


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Looks good so far. I use both oak and pine as test blanks. Oak is a PIA because it tends to splinter. Make sure the dimensions are the same as the gun (height and width) and use it to test ALL of your cuts on the router before putting your gun on the rtr table. BTW, I usually just cut about a 10-12 inch chunk to use as my test piece; no need to burn up a whole lot of wood unless you are looking for firewood. ; ) Good luck.

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Old 03-14-2017, 12:44 PM   #3
FreediveCA
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Don't worry about planing out the bows before laminating. Just have them arranged like this... () or )(. Do not do... (( or )). Hope that makes sense to you. Also, I wouldn't be in any rush to epoxy them just yet. Maybe it's just me and I let things sit for too long, but I wait two weeks after ripping before laminating. This allows the wood to take their natural bow and set. Once you've laminated it and the epoxy has cured then you can plane it and square it off.
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Old 03-14-2017, 01:22 PM   #4
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Thanks for the replies guys. Definitely will be going through the whole process with the oak first and the mahogany will be sitting for a week or two before laminating. I think i understand what the parenthesis represent. If you were looking down at the laminates you want the curved pieces to cancel each other out. For the bowed pieces, your saying let them be and plane them out afterward which makes sense.
Not sure of the proper jargin but when i say bow i mean this

And curved this

My theory here is that if i orient all the bows the same and end up with a consistent but curved blank when i joint/plane it will use up more meat and make my blank thinner in height. Or oppose them and find the top and bottom with the jointer/planer and end with a thicker height. Maybe Im over analyzing. After the blank dries and is squared i was planning on adding a top lam anyway.


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Old 03-15-2017, 12:13 PM   #5
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

If u laminate with super glue the gun will never warp or delaminate
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Old 03-16-2017, 01:25 AM   #6
doyenofcastle
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

for my new build mahogany ,I cut the blank of Mah. to 12mm *50 mm*1600mm for 6 pieces leave them in other room away from sun ,the moisture will evaporate faster for small laminated pieces than big lumber piece ,I keep check the weight of the laminateonce a week ,first time I calculated the density it was 770 approx. yesterday it was 680 so for african MAH. need to be <600 to be sure the moisture a round 12% to start gluing
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Old 03-16-2017, 08:29 AM   #7
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Johndoe, thanks for the tip, already bought 105 with the 206 hardener, i think i will go that route.
Doyen, interesting. I was using a moisture meter which was telling me my mahogany was 0%, which i doubted. Even if it was kiln dried i would think it would absorb moisture from the air and balance out. Maybe i will check with the place where i bought the wood, see what they say.
Is it bad if the moisture is significantly less than 12%?
Last night after work I epoxied the white oak practice piece that i cut a few weeks ago.




I think it went pretty well, i squeezed until i saw epoxy come out along the whole length in every gap but no more than necessary. I mixed WAY to much epoxy, about 9oz. So when i finished clamping i ran down in the basement to find different materials to coat and cut out a hole in some plywood to fill as a coaster, just experimenting. Came upstairs 20 minutes later to a melted plastic cup with epoxy running all over my desk.
The directions were correct, the more epoxy in a closed area together the shorter the pot life and the more heat. So glad i spread out all that scrap paper.


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Old 03-16-2017, 01:14 PM   #8
FreediveCA
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

I am pretty sure the super glue was intended as a joke. Don't go making some super glued guns.

You may have your clamps a little too tight. You don't want the epoxy to ooze out. Obviously you cannot see through the wood to see what exactly is going on, but take this into consideration. If you coated the wood with epoxy, slap the pieces together, clamp, and have that very epoxy ooze out that would mean that epoxy you coated is now on the outside instead of being between the lams giving you gaps.

Also, hope those papers in the pictures are not important documents containing personal information. Those pictures came out pretty clear. Maybe I'm just paranoid for you after doing some hacker workshop at work.
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Old 03-16-2017, 01:19 PM   #9
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Thanks for the info, yes I think I may replace one of those photos, I checked before i posted them and thought I was clear. As for the epoxy I clamped down just until the epoxy came to the top, not much came out so I think I should be ok. Thanks!


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Old 03-16-2017, 02:12 PM   #10
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

I look forward to following the progress.
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:54 PM   #11
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

I took the white oak out of the clamps this afternoon. It came out pretty straight I think.


After freediveCA's comment about squeezing the epoxy out I decided to investigate and cut half an inch off one end.

If anyone has any input here I would appreciate it. It seems that in the middle the wood is touching and towards the outside you can see a little epoxy, maybe a few hundredths of an inch. Is this too little? I might do some more experimenting with the epoxy before I go for the real deal.


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Old 03-18-2017, 01:03 PM   #12
deanmc
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

When I make up a blank I cut the lams so the grain is running in more of a vertical orientation as opposed to horizontal like in your photo above.

You will always get some epoxy squeeze-out. The photo of your clamped blank doesn't look too bad depending on how well you coated the lams with epoxy before clamping it together. I'm almost wondering if the lams above were a little fatter in the mid-section or maybe twisted along their length? Looks like you had a good setup clamps-wise.
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Old 03-18-2017, 07:00 PM   #13
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Thanks Dean, I did notice in other photos that people had the grain at more of a 45 but could not find much about the reasoning or pros/cons of the orientation and assumed that if the wood has stopped moving that it did not matter.


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Old 03-19-2017, 01:01 AM   #14
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

may I know your stock 3 dimensions in mm ,I have an auto cad sketch for 70mm width blank
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Old 03-19-2017, 01:07 PM   #15
cougarprey
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Re: First gun build, thoughts and pics

Hi Doyen, The mahogany has not been planed or laminated yet. This white oak above is just me experimenting with epoxy and is not the same dimensions. My planned blank will be 2.5 inches (63mm) wide 2.25 inches tall (57mm) and length of 60 inches (1,500mm).


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