The United States is in shutdown mode because of the current COVID-19 outbreak. With only essential businesses being allowed to remain open during these unprecedented times, a large number of people have been urged to self-quarantine in an attempt to flatten the curve.
With so many people stuck indoors for an unknown period of time, it can be easy to go a bit stir-crazy. That’s why our woodworking experts here at Laguna Tools are here to help keep you busy.
Contrary to popular belief, you do not need to be a woodworking master to get started on your first DIY project while sheltering-in-place.
Before launching into your woodworking project and operating woodworking tools, it's important to be aware of safety tips. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on the Machine Shop Safety website outlines a list of dos and don’ts to keep you safe.
Here are several easy DIY woodworking projects that you can tackle while practicing social distancing.
Photo Credit: HiramF1
Project #1 - A Wall Shelf
Now that you’re spending quite a bit of time at home, you’ve probably noticed that re-decorating might not seem like such a bad idea.
A wall shelf is a great way to kickstart your woodworking skills and create something that’s both practical and pleasing to the eyes.
What You Need:
• Orbital Sander or sandpaper
• Drill with a 1/8-inch drill bit
• Reciprocating saw or handsaw
• Paint or wood stain
• Wood screws
Before you begin, you first need to decide on the size and design of the wall shelf. Since you’re using a pallet, you have more than one option.
You can break the pallet down and use the boards as single-shelf units, or you can keep the pallet in-tact and create a large multi-shelf unit.
Step 1 - Whichever style you choose to go with, you need to begin the process with sanding. While this can be done by hand, we highly recommend an orbital sander. As a power tool, this machine makes the process much easier and faster.
Step 2 - Use a reciprocating saw or hand saw to break down the pallet for single-shelf units. If you decided to keep the pallet whole, you’ll need to cut two planks from another piece of wood to mount onto the back of the shelf for hanging. These planks can be glued or screwed into place.
Step 3 - Both shelf styles will need brackets installed next to securely hang them from the wall. A power drill makes this step super fast.
Step 4 - Using a paintbrush with either paint or a wood stain, you can color the shelf unit to suit your personal style.
Step 5 - Once it had dried completely, you can hang your new shelf until and decorate it as you see fit.
Project #2 - Lazy Susan
Since most people are staying at home and not visiting the grocery store as often, many families have had to stock up on canned goods to last a few weeks.
With all of these extra food products cluttering up the cabinets, it can be difficult to find the things you want without taking everything out. That’s where the Lazy Susan comes in handy.
This spinning cabinet organizer makes it easy to see what you have stored away in the back. These handy rotating shelves can be expensive to buy, so why not make one yourself?
What You Need:
• Orbital sander
• Paint or wood stain
• Hardware with screws
Step 1 - Choose your wood and your Lazy Susan hardware. This is what allows the finished product to spin once installed. Keep in mind that you can buy a round slab that is ready to go, but where’s the fun in that?
Step 2 - Next, you need to prep the wood by using a planer. Follow that by drawing a circular outline that you will use as a guide for cutting.
Step 3 - Then use a bandsaw or jigsaw to cut out the pattern.
Step 4 - Now that you have a circular piece of wood, it’s time to sand it using an orbital sander. Of course, you can use sandpaper to smooth out the wood by hand if you don’t have an orbital sander yet.
Step 5 - Next, it’s painting/staining time! Apply your varnish of choice with a paintbrush and let it dry completely before moving on to the next step.
Step 6 - Finally, you can screw the Lazy Susan hardware in place and stick the finished product into your cabinet.
Other Easy DIY Woodworking Projects
If your woodworking shop is brimming with machines and power tools, the sky’s the limit with what you can create.
Here are a few other DIY woodworking projects you can undertake during the quarantine.
Using Laguna Tools lathe and bandsaw machines, Bryce Cutting (@pallet_professor on Instagram) created some extraordinary wooden bowls.
Although this project takes some patience, the results are quite beautiful. Nothing says going back to nature like dining with eco-friendly dinnerware that you crafted yourself.
Do you miss going out to eat dinner with your family and friends? Bring the experience of freshly ground pepper into your own home by creating a pepper mill.
If you find yourself wanting to fill up a few barren walls with homemade art, you can create your own wooden signage as decorations.
Mike Goulet (@thesignspecialist on Instagram) uses Laguna Tools Smartshop M2 to craft custom signs. This handy machine allows you to design anything you want and easily carve it out onto whatever wood materials you choose.
Laguna Tools Woodworking Tools
At Laguna Tools, we love to share our passion for woodworking so much that we created a vast library of videos to help you learn more about our products. You can access our video library to see more DIY projects that you can do while the quarantine order is in place.