What Is 3D Printing?

Are you curious about 3D printing? Watch my latest video to learn the basics of how 3D printers work, and at the end of the video I will tell you how you can start experimenting with 3D printing without even owning a 3D printer!

3D Modeling Software

As I mentioned in the video, there are several powerful 3D modeling programs that are available for free or with a free license for hobbyists and makers. Here is a quick summary of some of the most popular free 3D modeling programs: Continue reading “What Is 3D Printing?”

Making a Valet Box for about $30

In my latest video, I make a valet box (essentially a jewelry box for men) using oak hobby boards, wood stain, and spray lacquer.

To make the valet box, I used my newest tool: a compound miter saw! I bought an inexpensive model but it works great at making accurate cuts, which was essential for this project.

And once it was assembled, I used dark cherry wood stain to improve the look of the box. And to finish and protect the valet box, I used spray lacquer.

Watch the video to how I made it!

Learn Fusion 360 by Making a Webcam Cover

Learn more about Fusion 360 in my latest video, where I teach you how to make a webcam cover.

Building on my previous Fusion 360 tutorial, I will teach you how to use symmetry and mirroring, extrude from existing faces, and the basics of the Loft tool.

Although the exact dimensions I use in the video are specific to the brand and model of webcam that I use, you can easily use the techniques to make your own custom webcam cover for your own webcam.

Building a Simple Cabinet

The corner of my basement is where I store all of my networking hardware, which manages the Internet coming into my home. But that area is disorganized and wastes space that could be used for storage. So I built a cabinet of shelves out of plywood to fix those problems.

Watch the video to learn how I built the cabinet using only a circular saw, drill, impact driver, and a hammer!

Light-Up Printed Decoration with LEDs and Acrylic

I know it’s been a while since I’ve put up a new video, but life was hectic for a few weeks. But I have been working on a new project! For part of that project, I will use 3D printing, acrylic, and LEDs, so I wanted to experiment with using those materials in a smaller project. So I made a small light-up decoration using my 3D printer, acrylic, and LEDs.

Continue reading “Light-Up Printed Decoration with LEDs and Acrylic”

Making a Picture Frame Using a Router

After building an inexpensive router table and recently upgrading the base to a cabinet, I decided to use my router table to make a picture frame. In my latest video, I show you how I made a picture frame for a 5×7 picture of Chicago I took a few years ago.

I bought some nice 1×2 pine boards and thin acrylic from Home Depot as the material for the frames. I used my circular saw to cut the pieces of the wood to the correct size with a 45 degree angle. The outside edges of the frame will measure 9.5″ by 7.5″.

I shaped the pieces using my router and some decorative router bits I bought as a set.  I also used a 3/8″ rabbeting bit to add a rabbet to the back for the acrylic, picture, and backing to sit.

I glued together the routed pieces and then painted the frame black. After putting it all together with the picture, acrylic, foam core backing, and glazing points, my picture frame was ready to hang on the wall!

This was a fun, easy project that helped me get more comfortable using my router table. I learned that I should have routed the wood before I cut the pieces, because it would have made the routing easier and more accurate. But the frame still turned out very nicely, so I am happy with the result.

For more information about how I built the picture frame, watch the video above and let me know what you think in the comments here or on YouTube!

Building a Router Table Cabinet

A few months ago, I showed you how I built a cheap, inexpensive router table using plywood, 2×4 lumber, and acrylic. In my latest project, I replaced the simple 2×4 base of my router table with a plywood cabinet, without using a table saw!

Nearly the entire cabinet is made from 1/2-inch plywood, and most of the plywood is cabinet-grade red oak. The exception is the bottom, which is a lower grade 1/2-inch plywood (the same plywood I used to make the shelves of my workbench).  And I also used some pieces of solid red oak for the lips of the shelves and as supports for the shelves inside the cabinet.

Since I don’t own a table saw, I used my circular saw to cut all of the plywood. To get straight, accurate cuts, I ran the saw against a straight-edge for all cuts. I carefully measured the position of the straight-edge and used clamps to make sure the straight-edge stayed in place.

There are still a few more features I eventually want to add to the router table. First, I want to add drawers to the empty space at the bottom of the cabinet. Second, I want to add a dust port to the back of the cabinet, so I can connect my shop-vac to the cabinet while I’m using it as a router. And third, I want to add cabinet doors to the shelf areas of the cabinet. It would have been nice to add all of those features during this project, but I spent more time than I expected just making the cabinet, so I am happy stopping for now without those extra features.

To learn more about how I built the cabinet, watch the YouTube video!