RoadTripCA_20101113_0151Late in the afternoon the fog rolled in, and with it came the chill of the sea. RoadTripCA_20101113_0157Wrapping its way around rock and wave, the mist captured and made vanish, everything in its wake.RoadTripCA_20101113_0153Just beyond the dunes the weather began to retreat. A damp, dark earth left behind.RoadTripCA_20101114_0166All that was left was the sea and a few rocks battling their way through it.

joshua-tree-wilderness_0100Out there lies an endless desert. Stretching to the horizon. The air crisp and dry. The sun steadily beating down all life. joshua-tree-wilderness_0092No real way to go but through the thorny brush. Dust rising on my trail, the wind picks up and I saunter onward. joshua-tree-wilderness_0111This is no land for man. Peak after lonely peak reveals the enormity of the path ahead.joshua-tree-wilderness_0138-2Careful foot placement avoids pain from below. Everything out here is sharp, protective and hostile – fighting for every last drop of life.joshua-tree-wilderness_0120At the end of the day, when the sun drops below the horizon and the scorching air makes peace with night a sense of comfort is found out here in the Southwestern Desert. Have a great weekend and remember to get out and enjoy some nature.


It’s back into the woodshop for the annual ‘Make My Girlfriend Something By Hand for Her Birthday’ extravaganza. It has been a while since I have been able to do this – in the past year I had to move twice. Twice, yes both the home and the workshop. It drained the energy from my lifeblood and contributed to a period of inactivity here on the blog…but then again – I always have an excuse!

Well, this time I am going to be making a small desktop drawer that will also function as a stand to hold up her computer screen at an ergonomic height. I am by no means a well-trained woodworker, so most of my projects inevitably end up being large lessons in redoing everything from scratch. I am still learning proper wood joinery techniques, so this project will focus on a few different applications – the rabbet joint and groove, and possibly a mortise and tenon as icing on the cake.

Here’s a photo of my first mortise and tenon joint project – a small cabinet extension to make grabbing those spices nice and easy:



The first step? Measure what’s already there to get an idea of the size this drawer needs to be. Here’s what is being used as the screen stand right now:

small-wood-drawer_0006small-wood-drawer_0007Yes, that’s a clay pig.

Measuring out the minimum size needed tells me that I need a base of 9 inches x 9 inches and height of 3.5 inches. This partially affects the size of wood I will use, since I want a functional drawer, but also need this thing to be sturdy enough to hold 20 + pounds of Apple.


Checking my vast reserves of wood inventory – lots of scraps from the past, I found two sheets of dimensionally cut walnut a .5 x 6.75 x 69 incher for the outer box/frame, and a .25 x 5 x 48 inch for the drawer itself. Since the bigger piece doesn’t reach the full 9 inches needed for the base, I will need to add in another wood joint to connect two pieces and maintain the strength. Here goes!


Proper footwear first! Don’t want that drill bit falling on your toe.

Of course, before I make any cuts I sketched out an overview of the piece and rudimentary measurements of the different parts including an idea of how the joints will work…all on tiny purple sticky notes. Probably not the best idea, but I am trying to get this project movin’!


I marked my cuts, adding in about 1/8 inch between for the kerf (amount of wood removed by the blade). Got my eye protection, hearing protection (some Howard Leight ear muffs) and off to the miter saw for the first round of cross cuts.

small-wood-drawer_0018Click the link below to read the entire post…

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  • Ann - September 8, 2015 - 5:49 am

    That is a beautiful drawer/computer stand! I always enjoy your posts. Wallets for women? Good idea!ReplyCancel

    • Mr. Lentz - September 8, 2015 - 12:56 pm

      Hi Ann, thanks for being a fan! Yes, the wonderful world of wallets for women, they can get quite complicated!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - September 8, 2015 - 4:02 pm

    Looks fantastic and A Lot of work. Lucky girlfriend!ReplyCancel

    • Mr. Lentz - September 9, 2015 - 5:19 pm

      Definitely a lot of work, but worth the effort as I find it fun to tinker around in the workshop at night.ReplyCancel