Projects Corner

I have started this thread, especially for the downtime that some may have over the off season.

I have called it the “Projects Corner”, as some of us may do things with our hands other then typing keyboards, clicking mouses, tapping remote control buttons and the like. This can be varied, as some of us like to potter with timber, metal, haberdashery, clay and other sorts of things. These can be ongoing projects, or recent completed, or in the “design stages”.

Feel free to comment, ask for advice, but any comments that have the be critical, please be creative in your replies and suggest an option they could have used or thoughts.

1 Like

Here is a project that I did for the missus.

Buying huge pots can be very expensive, so I decided to innovate making potting beds that are manuveurable and large enough to either grow vegies in, or other plants that the missus wants to grow.

It all started with an old bath tub, which I had made a frame for, and had some old colorbond sheeting from storm several years ago that was replaced on the house. But the original design didn’t feature it to be movable, but later ones I have built has it incorporated into it.

This is the basic frame and sheeting.

After a coat of SLS primer.

After two coats of gloss Deep Indian Red

Then the corners attached.

And the bathtub installed inside it.

Some earlier ones I had made that has some hippeastrums already planted.

The original one that I had first built.


I have various projects on the go, some big and some small, but there are plenty of them.

I have a small one that I have just started about a month ago, and will be ongoing for some time, as I have to fit this in between the other projects and normal things I have to do meantime.

Recently, my grandmother’s place was just sold and we had to clean out her home for the new owners. In amongst the “stuff”, there were an old chess sets of my grandfather’s that my father had found. My father had found a smaller set one that he and my grandfather had played together, and my youngest brother had taken it, as he will teach his young son how to play when he gets a bit older. This didn’t bother me, as I had alreadey a chess set that I had made at high school, and it was good that my brother and nephew can pass this down via his line (I haven’t any children of my own).

However, there was a bigger chess set, but the chess board frame housing was damaged and the steel playing board was also rusted up, but all the pieces where still there.


I have a friend (who also follows the bunnies) who had recently been through a divorce, and his eldest son loves playing chess, but they don’t have a board that they play together when he has them over his place. So I though what I may do is use parts of the old chess set, and make a new board and have the pieces and parts of the old chess box as drawers that holds the pieces.

So I have started making the board, but instead of using two different types of timbers to get that checker pattern, and as the pieces are black and white, I thought I’ll just stain the timber japan black and liming white first, so you get the timber grain still, but more definative colours to match the pieces.

I have used Tassie Oak for the board, and this is what they had looked like before the staining process.

Then stained with japan black and liming white

Once stained, I then coated them with two coats of wipe-on polyurethane and then cut them up into shorter lengths and glued them as so as a striped board.

Then I crosscut that board and then reglued them where the pieces were the alternatively and formed the checker pattern

(Insert picture to come)

This is how far I have thus progressed.

Next part is to break the old board’s sides off, and rebox them with new timber, using the old board as the underside. Before reboxing with the new timber, I will have to remove the surface rust off the metal checkered board and prep it with Penetrol to give it that vintage look, but prevent the surface rust resurfacing and giving it a layer of protection. This keeping most of the old board as much as possible.


One of the bigger projects in doing some reno’s to the home.

We finally were able to replace the front doors that happen to go through two hail storms.

The first time, the hail damaged the timber itself, and the insurance had the repairs only restain and recoated the timber. However, instead of using varnish like it had been done originally and spending the time preparing the surface properly, they had used a polyurethane clear over the top, which years later, cracked and blistered the original varnish underneath and thus stripping the varnish/polyurethane off the timber. Sadly, these doors are actually made from cedar, which is even more heart breaking.

The second time, the hail was only smaller then the '96 hail storm, but it had 15 mins of it. As you will see the hail did get up to the underside handles of the door. Now this door is about 3 metres back from the gutters edge.


Whereas on the inside the door looks perfectly good.

As the damage to the door was too much (the outer paneling was cracked and peeling itself) we decided to replace the doors with new ones. However, the old doors will be repurposed into a coffee table (another project for me to do).

So there was nothing wrong with the timber jambs, I had stripped the stain and varnish coatings off it and replaced them with these doors.



But, we were disappointed with these doors, mainly due the door being made mostly from MDF, which has it’s place for some things, but not on exterior doors, let alone the price there are asking for it. It wouldn’t be too bad, if they had put on moulding on the inside of the door instead of routering out the pattern they had. When you go the stain the door, instead of haing a timber grain instide, you have a plain colour of the stain, and when you see that the stain does on plain MDF, it is just a plain color, and generally is darker than the timber veneer that is on the door.

But the door manufacturer, not only routered the inside, they had done it to the outside, and the thickness of the door inbetween where they routered made the door only half as thick as the door should have been. But on the outside of the door, not only they had routered the outside, then added a moulding on top of it, which only magnified the depth of the moulding.

It just made the door look ever cheaper. So, I decided to modify their routering efforts. I was going to fill in the routered area with timber and make the moulding better to our tastes.

So I milled some Tassie oak from being squared (one of the right) to two different profiles, one for the outer side of the door just flat surface with chamfered edges (middle), and the same profile but with two scalloped runs (one on the left) as a remnicient of the replaced door which had it on the vertical mouldings on the from door panels. Both these mouldings are actually designed to sit inside the routered area of the door panel, thus leaving filling in the gap of the the routered area.



Thus when added into molding it changes the look to the following:



I have to do another coat of stain on it, and when I’ll have it ready, I will post the final picture of it.


Very impressive stuff there. IMO a hard act to follow👍

1 Like

Fucken hell, I’ve got a kitchen that needs remodelling, if you need the practice!


If my misses reads this thread she’ll go off her head, I can’t even be bothered putting a nail in the side gate that’s leaning over.


Some very impressive work there guys.
Very enjoyable reading and viewing.

RS, I think this is a great topic, but I wonder if you should have stopped at your second post & waited to see what others contributed.

I hope in your enthusiasm, you haven’t stifled your intent for this topic, by prematurely putting up your 3rd & 4th posts, before others had a chance to chime in. ( I know I felt, whoa this guy is way above my capabilities)

It is pretty obvious you enjoy, and are adept, in working with wood & other basic materials in building and repairs of simple items.

I would love to have you as a neighbour.

Not to get you to do things for me, but to show & inspire me how to go about things for myself. An easy, go to handyman, if you will.

I am interested in the portable flower/garden/veggie bed you initially showed.

From your pictures I got a bit of an idea of it’s size, but I am wondering what it’s actual dimensions were, and also what you used as a base to hold the soil & organic items within it.

I had some spare time when I had posted the first one.

As for the bathtub garden bed, it depends on the size of the bathtub. The latter versions with the bathtubs I purchased them from Bunnings when they were on special. But if you can get you hands on old tubs. they with do just as well.

The bathtub actually rests on the top of the timber frame, so that there is no need for the base. And I just line the base of the bathtub with some weed mate and fill it in with a mixture of potting/mulch/manure mixes.

When you live on property, you always have things to fix, and you do usually have to buy the tools you need to do such stuff. Being raised up with and knowing people in the building and mechanical trades, you get to learn a few tricks. Some like going on holidays, whereas my holidays consists of doing things around the house, and the only difference between the two is that I can drink on the job.

That’s also on my list to do with our house. We are just awaiting the flooring guys to order in the materials and lay the floor before I can order the kitchen from Ikea. I have already did my mates kitchen design and assembly from Ikea. But the only thing I didn’t do was the kitchen tops, we got a local joinery to do that for us as I didn’t have the equipment at the time to do such things. I did do my school work experience at a joinery place for 2 weeks, but they asked me if I wanted to work over the school holidays which followed on straight after work experience period for another 2 weeks, as they were flatout at the time, which I did and got paid for all 4 weeks! Then when I had finished year 10, a little after that I ended up working for the carpenter for about a year that had employed the guys who had the joinery business as apprentices. I never did get any formal qualifications as a carpenter, but the experience and the old school knowledge I had gained in the youngers years I have kept.

1 Like

Just be glad you don’t have mein. My step son and I call her the Fuhrer.

Use a bugle screw if timber is thick and big enough, otherwise use galvenised screws instead. Invest in a impact driver (even cheap Ryobi from Bunnings), that way it makes it easier for you to do.

1 Like

You can buy something almost exactly the same from Bunnings. Gal sheet and platic corner posts… put it up in 10 minutes :slight_smile:

I just finished reconditioning the 300tdi turbo diesel in my Landy after I blew a big end at around 320,000K. It overheated badly a few months back and I’d say, that’s where the damage was done.
It took me all of 2 and a half months and cost me close enough to 6 grand but I took no shortcuts and did a complete job.
I replaced the Big End Bearings, New Cam Bearings, a new Crank, New Pistons & Rings, Oil pump, New Aluminium Radiator, Thermostat, Fan, Turbo and many other ancillary bits & pieces.
It is presently running beautifully and, should last me the rest of my life.

Land Rovers become like a 2nd wife to many men in that they continually need attention, maintenance and tender loving care. They are a great (and reasonably cheap) project if you’re looking for a good 4x4 and you’re mechanically minded.
My Landy is a 1998 Discovery, with a 4 cyl turbo Diesel, cheap to run and with plenty of power for what I use it for which is taking it up the beach, fishing, camping and outback adventures. I also have a Tru-track diff in the rear for extra traction when towing my camper trailer.
Much of the body is made of Aluminium and it will go where ever you want it to and, it will do it with comfort compared to most of the Japanese cars out there.
I’ve always been an English Car enthusiast.
Having said that, now that my Landy is running well, my attention is turning to the rebuild of my 1976 MGB.
I’ve already reconditioned the Gearbox and the Overdrive unit and now my focus becomes the engine. It runs fine but I may as well replace the rings & bearings while it’s out and if I stumble on any wear, I can replace those bits.
No photo’s at this stage but I’m getting there.


This is a project I finished this year. It’s a 73 flh matching number. Sold it earlier in the year.
Now focussed on my Camaro


Very nice!

Thanks mate. Aside from the 73, I had a 79 and a 2000. And no more all gone. Three major accidents later and now the cars are the go.

1 Like

What model Camaro?

Dad has just finished doing his panel van up. Holden Hj 1975 186 motor

You guys could go cruising and talk about the old times lol


Gotta love the Sandman!


I will with your dad. One of my favourite guys