Wednesday, July 10, 2013

HEXAGONAL TRIVETS DIY


Who knew I would love power tools?  For years my dad worked as a carpenter.  I never thought to ask him how to build things since I figured he would always be there if I ever needed a cabinet or shelves.  So, after relocating to San Diego I found myself in trouble: my dad was in Cape Town, my husband hated home improvement and we had a house that needed a lot of upgrades.  I needed to find someone handy with a saw.  The solution (after much deliberation) was for me to take a carpentry class.  When I enrolled last spring I could have never guessed how much I would love it.  Now, my husband and I have dreamed up so many projects that I’ll need years to finish them all!

These plywood hexagons were originally cut for a project at the hubster’s office (more on that later).  They had been lying in a corner for a few weeks—like many of my projects seem to do—while I contemplated the next step.  With a friend having recently purchased a house, I knew I’d have to come up with a good house-warming gift.  I hit on the idea of using some of the hexagons to make trivets.  I think they are hip, pretty and fun, just like their soon-to-be owner. 

NOTE: These instructions are for making plywood hexagons.  If you have never used a saw (and you don’t want to lose any fingers!), try making the trivets out of cork.  All you’ll need is a utility knife.  

What you’ll need:
¼” or ½” Plywood (at least 10” x 10” for each trivet)
Pencil
Compass
Ruler
Table saw
Miter saw
Sealant (linseed oil or beeswax)

Optional:
Acrylic paint
Painter’s tape
Paintbrushes
Plastic containers

Step 1:  
Draw a hexagon on the plywood. 
The easiest way I found to do this was to use a compass.  Set the compass to a radius of 5” (or larger for a bigger trivet) and draw a circle.  Don’t change the angle of the compass.  Mark a beginning point (A) along the circle. Place the point of the compass on A and mark a second point (B) 5 inches away from A along the circle.  Make sure that a line drawn between point A and point B is parallel to the edge of the plywood.  Continue moving the compass point to the new mark along the circle in order to mark all 6 points of the hexagon.  Once you have all the points marked, connect the dots to create the hexagon. 

Step 2:
Use the table saw to rip (cut with the grain) the wood along the top and bottom of the hexagon.

Step3:
Crosscut the plywood with the miter saw along the outer edge of the hexagon.  

Step 4:
Set the miter saw to 30 degrees and cut the remaining sides of the hexagon.


TIP:  Use the first hexagon as a template to draw the rest.  That way they will all be the same size. 

Step 5:
If you like the natural look, seal the trivet with linseed oil/beeswax to prevent staining. 
To add some colour and designs to the trivet, use acrylic paint and tape before sealing.

Happy crafting!  Nicole

 
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