Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmas Stocking Stuffer Ideas: Jelly Wax Fire Starters
Unknown1:52 PM

These simply fire starters make great stocking stuffers the for the outdoorsy type of people.  It's one of the projects my family likes to work on and give to the rural neighbours as a small Christmas gift. They work fantastic in getting the wood stove fire started, especially when it's super cold or the firewood is damp.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Testing Out Wind Turbine Made from Recycled Parts
Unknown2:44 PM

Great news! The wind turbine I was messing around with back in 2012, is working! (no load)
Now, I know that sounds really odd, but it has been on the back burner for quite sometime. I had a special location picked out and was planning to use it with another set of deep cycle batteries.

This particular wind turbine project started back in October 2012. My good neighbour, traded the wind turbine generator for a portable boom box. He mentioned that it wasn't working after an accidental shorting out of some wires. (He was extension cord style of wire ($69.00) than (2) 100' of 6 gauge welding cable ($140.00). Click on the links below below for more information.
drilling a hole into the tower and the drill bit struck one of the wires). So I took it home and messed around with the factory rectifier. Once it was removed, it was modified to a three wire AC system which would then be rectified closer to the battery box. To handle a 20 amp load, its much cheaper to run 100 feet of 12 gauge, AC, 3 prong,

Made a series of YouTube videos:
Part 1- Recycled Mount for Wind Turbine  
Part 2- Recycled Wind Turbine Mount- Stronger standoffs and a fancy cowling 
Part 3- Recycled Wind Turbine Upgrades 
Part 4- Homemade Wind Turbine Project v1.0 
Part 4- Buck Rogers Upgrade to Wind Turbine Project 2.0 
Part 5- Fancy Tail Fin for Wind Turbine Project 

So, with the completion of the new side deck, it was an
ideal spot for the big wind turbine. The plan was to erect the tower on top of the deck, next to the cabin and use the roof line as a support. Ended up moving the location 3 times before I found an ideal spot where it could be raised and lowered easily. Finally,  a good location was found at the corner of the cabin. Once it was in place, my next concern was the sound of the blades spinning and vibration.  But the next day, (the last day) there was no wind and I couldn't complete the test, bummer!
So, I let it sit for 3 weeks and see how it does. On October 17th, 2014, came up to the cabin to do some work on the insulation and check on the wind turbine. It was still there is one piece. Nice! Plus, it was a windy day and I heard it working. Boy, did it make a racket. Sounds just like a working power drill being pushed into a some wood with no drill bit. Quite loud and annoying!

So, the next plan of attack is move the wind turbine tower to a different location, but close to the cabin, with good wind and eliminate some of the noise. Below is a video of it working.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Cedar Workshop Facebook Page
Unknown9:41 PM

If your looking for more up-to-date information on some of the Cedar Workshop projects, be sure to check out the Facebook page.

I'm finding the more I get busy with YouTube videos and projects, the less time I spend updating the website and social media sites.
So the plan was to update the Facebook page with current projects, a weekly video on YouTube and then every other week post a project in the works on the Blogger site.

I have tons of videos, but not all them are very interesting and should be edited. Plus I really suck at doing the commentary.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Epic DIY Deck Project- Part 6 First Time Building a Railing for a Deck
Unknown7:57 AM

Early morning shot of the completed railing on the Epic DIY Deck Project
The rail system came from a children's homemade tree fort that I dismantled a few years ago. It was a Craigslist find by my spouse. The catch was, I had to do the demolition, but got to keep all the lumber. It had tons of 2 x 6, 2 x 12, decking lumber and these pre made rail sections.

Put the shorter rail section near the corner. Add more strength to the railing

I actually had to trim an inch off the bottom rails, but it worked out just fine. 

This style of railing is actually quite easy to put together. It consists of a 6 foot long 2 x 4 rail at the bottom and the top, then (15) 3/4" holes were drilled 4.5" apart. A powered coated black, aluminum spindle was inserted in the holes.

I need to make my on section for left over lumber and it took about 30 mins to turn out a 6' long by 42" tall rail section.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Epic DIY Deck Project -Part 5- Cedar Decking and a Helping Hand
Unknown10:15 AM

Another instalment of the Epic DIY Deck Project series. The last of the joists were secured in place with joist hangers and hurricane ties. Then it was time to dig out the 2" x 6" x 16', 18' and 20' cedar boards. A big bonus for the weekend, I hired my 10 year son as a worker. He was a huge help in carrying lumber, air nailing and using the impact drill. (All my kids are trained on power tools) All I had to do was keep him busy and break for a soda on coffee break.

Hope this series has been interesting and helpful for other people who plan on building a deck by themselves.

Thanks for watching!

Music Credit: Eviction, by Silent Partner,

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Epic DIY Deck Project- Part 3B- More Joists & Minor Fix
Unknown9:25 AM

Scarfed a newer 2" x 10" into the beam

Side view of the deck project

My son gave a hand measuring

Lake side picture on July 13th

Road side view of the deck

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Epic DIY Deck Project- Part 3- Installing Joists, Brackets & Blocking
Unknown8:58 AM

The good weather is finally here and most of the crisis projects were completed. Next on the list was the Epic DIY Deck Project. It called that because it such a huge deck (24′ x 11′) and time consumer. Since I work behind a computer for the day job. I really enjoy building something. I think it’s all the outdoor summer jobs that help out with times like this.
Anyway, once the work site was prepped with material, equipment set up and the plans consulted, the project start. After a few hours a structure started to take shape and it was really gratifying to see the deck take shape. Also, I will add, I’m no expert, nor claim to be one. I’ve consulted with the building codes and have created a plan to follow. I wish I could hire someone to finish it off during the week, but the budget doesn’t allow a professional builder. I’ll keep you posted with a few videos of the weekend builds.

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Manly Man Weekend
Unknown9:03 AM

The long weekends have always been the cottage or cabin season opener. That’s when the ice has finally melted and moved off the lake. Most of the snow is gone and the recreational home was prepared for the summer. Lucky for me, a bunch of pals offered to give a hand and make this transition much easier.

Check out the Facebook page for updates

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Update to Making Copper Coils for a Wind Turbine
Unknown8:21 AM

An update to the making copper coils for a vertical axis wind turbine. The coils will be used with the gear system from the breadmaker. (Update for that video will be coming soon)
 Music credit
Title: Heavy, by Huma-Huma, YouTube Library,

Monday, March 17, 2014

Hey! What about those copper coils?
Unknown8:33 PM

I'm working on it. First had to take care of some stuff at the cabin. i.e. keeping the water from pooling on the roof and leaking inside.

Anyway, here's a few pics of where I'm at.


2nd coil, 86 turns, Krazy glue every 10 turns

A screw for the start (A) and finish (B)

Winding jig from an old shelf bracket

Spool of wire. Yep, it almost unravelled on me. Had to stick a piece of painters tape as a stop

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

10 Videos in 22 Seconds - January Compilation 2014
Unknown2:08 PM

Made another YouTube Fan Finder style of video. It's special recap of the latest videos.
It's called "10 in 22" (10 videos in 22 seconds)
Thought it would be a quick way for existing and new fans to check out the latest offerings.

Video Titles and links are posted below.

Music credit: Strange Ways by Silent Partner. Provided by YouTube Audio Library,

Monday, February 24, 2014

Great Bearings for Small VAWTs
Unknown2:35 PM

The bearings are from portable gas generator tire hubs. The 2 piece hubs are 8" diameter, air fill, rubber tires. Used for carts, dollies and generators. 
Once the bolts are removed, the hubs will come apart.
• Air fill only
• 1/2" - 5/8" arbor

In Canada: Princess Auto in Small Wheel Assemblies 2.80 x 2.50-4 Wheel Assembly@$15.99

Also, look on Amazon or eBay for Generator Wheel Kits, dolly or wagon wheels

Check out this video for reference for a close up

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cedar Projects
Unknown9:57 AM

Cedar gate with Arbor

Two cedar Adirondack Chairs finished in red latex paint

Had a comment from a viewer about the lack of woodworking projects. Good point. Yes, I have been quite busy with wind turbines and solar panels, which in-theory, has little in common to woodworking.
So, to show good intentions, I dug into the photo albums and pulled out a few summer freelance projects. As I remember, it was quite enjoyable and help pay for college. Feel free to browse through cedar structures, Adirondack chairs and pergolas.
More pictures found at the Cedar Workshop Google+ Page

Garden Corner Pergola for grapes and shade

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Plan to Build a Tree Mounted Wind Turbine
Unknown6:13 PM

Surrounding Lodgepole Pines
I've been thinking about mounting a wind turbine to a tree for quite awhile. Not happy with the wind turbine on the deck. It's not getting clean, undisturbed wind. If I could just get the turbine above the trees, I could maybe generated a couple more watts. 

I have two wind turbines, a small 175 watt DC and a larger 700 watt 3 phase AC turbine. The small one works good at throwing a few watts in and keeping the deep cycle batteries topped up or trickle charged. It's a nice peace of mind in the below zero winter nights.
Haven't installed the large turbine yet. The 1" keyed shaft did not fit into the tower pipe. So it was back to the drawing board. Have found a fencing pipe that would be big enough thou. Another problem the 700 watt is very heavy and the tow raising turns into a two person job.

One thought was to find a dead tree and fasten a tower to it. The only catch was it would have to be lowered for servicing once or twice a year. There are a few "standing dead" pine trees on the property, but are only 12' to 15' below the tree canopy. I estimate the average height of the trees is 40'. 

The next idea, was to select a live tree and safely mount a wind turbine to it. I don't want injuring or impede the growth. 

The ideal tree was directly behind the cabin, is a large, triangle shaped, White Spruce. It's quite magnificent to look at and would make a fine mount for turbines. Almost 90% of the wind comes rolling down the mountain and hits the back side of the property.

The cabin is located in a forest of Lodgepole Pine trees. I measured a tree that fell down and it came out to 40' tall.

Large White Spruce
Still have to mount the large turbine, but, the height factor is cancelling out the project.

On my lunch hour, I did a few sketches. I think about what resources are available: lumber, bolts, nuts, etc. Instead of what could be purchased.

Concept 1- Tree fort support

Concept 2 - Clamp platform
Concept 3 - Swing up
Concept 2- Is a Birdseye view, looking down on a "platform". The tree would be sandwiched in-between. 

Also, I have to think, "how does one person climb up the tree and hoist the lumber up?" That's what it comes down too. 

Then went to Adobe Illustrator and hashed out some more ideas. See below for the animated gif.
Updated January 24, 2014