Broom Machine B

The original of this is owned by Mark Hernig at Kick and Stitch Brooms. He did the hand sketches that you will see, and provided the critical dimensions for me to make the CAD drawings so that anyone building this will end up with a working machine.

There were a couple of sneaky angles that I had to get Mark to take extra photo’s for me to see… but once I got them into the drawing it worked out right.

Like most of these, there seems to be 3 parts, or 3 systems. table , frame, and functioning parts (not that the other parts don’t function, they just done move 😉 ), and the Quill, … 4 that’s, 4 parts that make up most of these. lol

Any slab could be used for this (the original seems to be made from a pre used one), glue up 2 by 4’s if you have to, 1 1/2″ to 2″ thick. and 4 legs, 1″ round tenons on the tops of the legs, the rest of the legs shaved to an octagon. The 4 holes for the legs are located 3″ from the ends, and 2 1/2″ from the sides. The angle of the legs is @ 20°, and the sight line is 45°. Notice the square mortise holes. the front two are perpendicular to the face, the back two are 10″ slanted so that the uprights that go there tip back at 10°

Rereading this it occurs to me that you might not know what a “sight line” is, or is for…

When you look at the angles of the legs of a chair, looking from the front there is one angle (splay) and looking from the side there is another angle (rake), but if you rotate the chair until the leg appears straight up and down that is when you are on the “sight line”. When I make a chair I draw the sight line on the chair and I use an adjustable bevel to set the angel of the leg. line the auger up with the sight line and check the angle of it with the bevel.. in the drawing I have located the centers of the holes and drawn the sight lines.

this drawing shows you where the leg holes and all of the other mortises go. as well as one of the legs.

3 pairs of parts make up most of the upper support structure. the back pieces with the 10° shoulders on the tenon, the front uprights, with square shouldered tenons. And the arms with holes in both ends. The rectangular mortise in the arms holds the wire guide block. the tenons are drawn long so that you can make an angled mortice in them and wedge them tightly in place.

If I have the mortises in the right place, the left hand back piece is the thickness of the arm away from the left hand front piece, While it looks like there is no way to mount the arm on the front uprights correctly, simply set the back and front uprights in place, use the 1″ dowel that is destined to have the wire spool on it to hang the arms from the back uprights, swing them up to where you like them or to where the angle between the fronts and the arms is 22.5°. There is a round spacer block of @ 2 3/4″ Ø and 2 1/2″ wide. I’m not sure the round is critical.

The Spacer block is nailed in place, and the leather friction strap is nailed to it, looped around the friction surface on the spool holder rod then tied to the tension lever @ 2 1/2″ from it’s pivot point.

The wire guide is made o fit the mortice in the arms. drill holes to move the peg around as suits the work you are doing.

The tensioning lever is @ 16 3/4″ long, fastened with a loose screw on the left to the left upright. on the far right end there is a string to at comes down to what looks like a heavy duty mouse trap spring mounted to the table.

The wire spool and the friction point are mounted on a hardwood dowel. Something strong like maple or oak. the barrel that is the friction point could be any wood is 3″ Ø and not longer than the 4 1/4″ spacer block (a little shorter would be best). It needs to be securely anchored to the dowel, as does the spool, which also has an outside rim diameter of 3″ and an inner diameter of 1 1/2″ for the wire to wrap onto. This set up has a crank handle for winding wire on so being able to take it apart isn’t needed. But you sort of have to do final assembly with it in the uprights and everything in place.

Then There is the main quill… the focus of the whole, thing as it were.

you could carve this out of a log, or use a wood lathe to turn it, out of a log, you could glue it up like a really thick walled barrel. or glue a big block and bore the hole and turn or carve the outside.

The inside is a 1 1/2″ Ø hole, inside a 2″ Ø shaft.

the larger part could be made separately, a 2″Ø x 8 3/4″ long tube, then a hub with a 2″ hole and a 5″ outside dimeter. About 4 1/8 long with the ratchet carved into one side @ 1/2″ on the face.

Make a pall (the thing that catches the ratchet to stop the broom rotating backwards) that you think looks good. there does not appear to be a spring to keep it pressed on the ratchet you may need one. But there is a keeper so it cannot flip over. it’s not drawn, but it’s in the pictures.

Another thing I didn’t draw is some sort of thumb screw through the quill to actually lock the broomstock in place while binding.

this can be a wood screw, or a steel plate with a threaded hole and a bolt. this quill has a steel plate between 2 of the spokes, there are 2 screw holes to hold it in place, and a threaded hole in the center for a bolt t tighten onto the broom handle. You can see it in the hand drawing.

With all of my plans: copy, use, share, refer to, DO NOT SELL! and consider leaving me a donation at the yellow button.

be well

stay safe


Do all the things!

(the Title line is borrowed from “Hyperbolae and a Half” online comic)

Hi! First post of 2022! First day or 2022!

First; I need to clean all of the things! Desk , first floor, stairs.

Then finish up some (many) long unfinished projects and get rid of them. (AFTER taking pictures!!, I forget to do that too often.),

Saw, wood thread cutter, mount new stock knife, spinning wheel, democratic chair, rocking horse, sign for Pennsic shop, rebuild chair parts dryer, finish 2 started shaving horses,

work on my Horror vacui and Kenophobia (lol)

move the rest of the mound of dirt, next to the new garage,

finish removing the old garage,

move all the wood to the concrete pad,

finish setting up shop in the new garage and behind it,

arrange for estimates on house exterior renovations,

Start new projects: coffee table, cutting boards with resin, coffee table with coffee beans, new workbench for garage, rope winder?, buckets?, stubby saw horses and ramps for using with my Alaskan saw mill,

one of these next days imma gonna hire an apprentice to help get it all done. (just as soon as I can afford one.)

looks like I have some work to do 😉

be well

count your toes when working with big wood, go make something


Cross Staff Rope Making Machine

This is a rope making machine of a type that was somewhat common in the 19th Century.

The gears can either be 24teeth and 6 pegs or 40 teeth and 10 pegs. Either way you get 1:4 ratio of twists.

You can see in this picture the cross arm need not be straight nor do the 2 hooks need to be exactly opposite. Nor do the three hooks need to be exactly spaced at 120° from each other, they could be but it’s not important.

What Is important is the spacing between the centers of the outer gears and the center of the main gear.

I have here drawn 24 to 6 , the smaller teeth of a 40 to 10 may run smoother.

I have not yet made this machine:

Most of the structure should be a softer wood like: Pine, Poplar, Bass, Cottonwood.

The main gear can be made of segments or made from a slab of the same softer wood, with teeth made from some very hard wood, like: White Oak, Live Oak, Lignum vitae.

main gear segment
main gear tooth

the main gear is drawn @ 1 1/2″ thick, the teeth are drawn 1″ thick.

I have drawn the small gears as 2 soft wood discs, 6 hard wood pegs, and a center 1″ hard wood shaft.

small gears

the center shafts of all the small gears need to have a hole bored through end to end, to accommodate the metal hook. OR make them 1″ too long and the hook can be made from a piece of pipe that only fits on the end of the center shafts.

hook made from pipe.

in use any wax or grease could be used to help it run smoothly, I prefer a 1:1 mix of mineral oil and bees wax. Any paste wax would work, or even bacon grease (very traditional)…

be well


Tools of the trade 13: and, Making Tools: Marking Gages

Having covered hand planes, you need to know how much material to take off. this is where your Marking Gage comes into play. Also the marking gage is usually one of the first tools someone makes for themselves so…

Marking gages are super simple to make, and you will need a couple during your career.

They have three essential parts, a beam, a fence, and a locking mechanism.

the beam is a stick of any consistent dimensions that you like. Eg. 1″ square or 1″ round… and has some way of leaving a mark on the wood, a pin to scratch, a knife to cut, or it might have a pencil holder built in.

the fence is a block of wood that the beam passes through and the locking mechanism is housed in.

And the locking mechanism could be a screw, a lever, or some sort of wedge. By far the easiest one is the the japanese wedge, and the trapped or french wedge comes close for simplicity.

marking gauges

So I will outline the making of 2.

marking gauges 2

I start with the fence. And make the wedge hole first… Use find a scrap @ 3″ x 3″ or 3″ x 4″… Find the center and Draw a 1″ diameter hole, or square.

for the gage on the left, draw a line across tangent to the top of of the circle with your square. bring the line around the side, and find the center. drill a 1/2″ hole all the way through to the other side.

Then drill a 1″ diameter hole as square to the face as you can. (drill presses allowed).

If you are going to use a square beam then use a square to scribe the lines and cut the  hole into a square with your chisels.

to make a beam you can get a 1″ hardwood dowel or use a rounder plane to make one, sand it until it just slips through the hole, or plane a 1″ square until it just fits the square hole.

you can use a nail for the marking pin, but  broken drill bit of less than 1/8″ diameter works better. drill a smaller hole and drive it in. If it is going in too hard make a saw kerf with a very fine saw up to the hole.

marking gauges 3

you can make a flat on top of the dowel type if you like, or not.

the wedge on the left hand model is a dowel with a cut out as shown that goes @ half way through. tapping one end will lock it, and tapping the other will free it. And it can’t fall out as long as the beam is in place. This is a Japanese style gage.

the french wedge is a bit trickier, it needs a mortice that is the size of the knob on the small end, see how the mortices intersect in the illustration.

marking gauges 4

Or you can orient the wedge parallel to the beam.

marking gauges 5

there are many different types or styles of gages, make what you think will be most useful for you.

be well

A Home Made Broom Press or vise made from easily obtained materials.

Hi! I’m at it again, drawing pictures, making plans etc…

Most Antique Broom presses are made from heavy hardwood planks. If you can find similar planks to work with by all means do so. Adjust your measurements to accommodate your thicknesses. if you can’t: you can make this with a 10′ “2×8” and a few other odds and ends.

FYI Common lumber standards have a 2×8 measuring 1.5″ x 7.5″ but the 10′ measure cannot be less than 10′ but it can be 10′ 1/4″ or something like that. In theory; the wood is sawn at 2″ x 8″ and then dried (where it shrinks, cups, and twists) and then run through a planer to flatten and make it all the same (and take the corners off). thus it can’t be actually be 2″ x 8″. when I was young the standard was finished at 1 3/4″ by 7 3/4″… but we are using a lot of fast grown junk trees now and the twist are worse so we get what we get now…

Many of the older broom presses are only 4′ tall or thereabouts. I drew this at 4’6 thinking it’s not too tall for most people and it will accommodate the longer handles that some people prefer.

Cross Cut a 2×8 into 2 pieces, 1 length of the height you want, the other 1/2″ shorter. you will need a 10′ one for a taller vice, or an 8′ one for a 48″ vise.

look through the scrap bins at your lumber yard and see if you can get reduces price offcuts for the 24″ clamp and it’s 18″ brace. Cut those to length.

The feet will need 2 pieces of 2×6, 31″ long and 2 pieces of 2×4, 16 1/2″ long. You may be able to find these in those scrap bins.. or cut it out of wider stock.

Drill holes for 1/2″ diameter bolts in the sides of the foot. a drill press is your friend here. Freehand if you must.

Drill holes for 1/2″ diameter bolts in the sides of the foot. a drill press is your friend here. Freehand if you must. I recommend that you use carriage bolts. If you cannot get them, then lag bolts or big screws from both sides would work.

The bolts in the stationary jaw are to hold it steady and solid, you may want to glue it as well. The ONE bolt in the moving jaw is a pivot point. Since it wants to move you will not want glue or other fasteners.

Here are the bottoms of the stationary jaw (left) and the moving jaw (right). You can see the height difference in the two jaws here. The holes are drilled centered in the thickness of the material.

A note about bolts and other options… Bolts or screws are best where things need to be tightened down and locked in place. But there is another option for the pivot points on this project. Bar stock and Cap nuts, Iron bar stock is available in a variety of sizes from most lumberyards or farm supply stores. they also have what are called “cap nuts” which press onto the ends bar stock (ok most times you need to hammer them on) they bite into the bar and are not removable. they can be use to fasten like bolts (make the bar a little shorter) or used to attach wheels to things, (make the bars a touch long so the wheels turn) and they would make better pivot points than threaded rod or bolts because the tooth threads will cut into the wood, smooth rod will not.

Hole for the position of the iron straps of the clamp lever… again centered in the material. use either a 1/4″ or 1/2″

you will want to cut a nice shape into the clamp paddle… maybe round where you grip it.

position of the pivot hole in the clamp paddle. also note the rounded over end…

Detail of the lower end of the paddle brace.

On all of the Metal! Cut it to length then file the sharp corners off! Then mark for holes and drill them. Then file those sharp edges off (or use a countersink or larger drill to get the burrs off). Clean with acetone and disposable rags, use paste wax to keep clean and rust free.

this is the iron strap that makes the clamp work, 3/4″ or 1″ wide, 1/8″ or 1/4″ thick, 12 3/4″ long. pivot hole positioning indicated in the drawing.

the jaws drawn are 1″ black angle iron, cut to match the width of the material you are using. You could use aluminum but that will probably smudge black on your broom corn. Clean with acetone and don’t wax it yet. Mark 4 or 5 holes about 1″ up from the bottom edge of the angle iron and drill to fit some #8 by 3/4″ pan head screws. you can glue these on with epoxy or Gorilla ™ glue then pilot drill the screw holes in the wood. (the holes in the iron want to let the screw slide through, the pilot holes in the wood want to grip the screw threads).

If all goes well this should work, if you have to adjust how close the jaws come together, you can either trim the paddle or file the angle iron to make it wider. or you can shim the paddle to make it clamp thinner…

Be well

go make something

Update: If you want curved jaws either:

make the contact area out of some hard wood and cut it to a curve.

Or cut lower leg of the steel every half inch or so with an abrasive cut off wheel, bend the steel, weld it together… or not, drill screw holes wherever you can and fasten it in place.

A Rocking Reed loom

I could not get measurements for this specific loom, so I adapted measurements from other looms and guesstimate some measurements etc.. But I believe that if you follow my measurements you will end up with a working loom…

A Rocking Reed Loom is one where the reed is standing on legs that have a rocker at their base, as opposed to the legs being suspended from an upper frame.