I no longer suck at welding!

So I had an idea that maybe my ugly welds were due to poor electrical contact or some chemical reaction to surface impurities. So I redid the exercise from before where I cut a pipe and then try to weld it back together and make it waterproof.

The difference is that this time I took the angle grinder and really polished all surfaces to a glimmering shiny new-steel surface. That gave a clear improvement! But I also realized that if my current setting was too low, that also caused sputtering and ugly welds. So I turned the current up a step as well, and then I really got things going.

The lower welds came out really nice. The upper ones started off ugly, but then I ground the ugly welds down, and turned up the current. Still not so pretty, but here we clearly have two water-tight welds!

The Lego dresser complete-ish

So the final stretch was just about putting it all together. The benefit of doing a proper model and then following it precisely is that the pieces actually fit together (Sometimes. :P).

First one drawer….

And then the rest of the drawers, and the Lego boxes. In actual use, the lids have to come off, of course. Otherwise you would have to pull out a drawer and open a lid to get to a piece, which you of course don’t want to have to do…

I also did the other one, but it looks exactly the same, so no reason to take a photo.

Now the dresser is actually mostly usable, and I will let the kids test to see if it works. However, to really be able to find pieces that are far in really quickly, I will have to install lighting. I am thinking about lining the back wall with downward facing LED strips. We will see…..

Lego sorting dresser

First some background. One of the great gifts my parents gave me was sorted Lego. Not just Lego, but Lego that was sorted into a logical system so I could easily find the piece I needed, when I needed it. Of course, the big investment from them was to help me keep it sorted and in order until I was old enough to do it myself, which took quite a few years…

I have chosen to pass that gift on to my kids, but there is one problem. Lego these days is more complex than it was, and also relatively cheaper, so my kids have more Lego than I ever had. I had 3 sorting boxes. They have about 10. The limit here is how many boxes can fit on a table that fits in a room. For the sorting system to make sense, all pieces have to be “within reach”

But then they got a few more semi-large sets, and now there is no hope at all to have it all within reasonable reach on a table. So it was time to go to the next level. And this is that level.

The requirements were:

  • Space for at least 15 sorting boxes, preferably more.
  • The contents of all boxes has to be visible and reachable for a 6-year old, without having to open and close lots of drawers

And this was the resulting design. The idea is to build two of these and place them back-to-back.

With this design, I can fit a full set of 18 sorting boxes. The spacing between the shelves means that a short person hopefully can look down and see what is in which box. Each shelf can then be pulled out to find the specific part if it isn’t immediately visible.

So here are some work- in progress images:

All of the parts cut up to the right sizes. Table saws and a good plan so I can cut all sizes I needed without reajustment made work really smooth.
A board attached and the router calibrated to cut the exact depth and width that I need
A gutter that perfectly fits a standing sheet to make the structure more stable and professional looking.
The underside of the top sheet routed and ready. Sharp router bits really make this an easy job.
One frame mounted and just missing the back cover

The resulting frames were to big to fit in our car, so I had to get a rental to get everything home.

Now I just need top it it all, something I have realized will take way longer than the cutting and the assembly. More on that later.

Before I can assemble the shelves, I also need to get the sliding extenders that I have ordered. They should be here within a week, I think.