'Ol Dave's Woodshop - Where woodworkers are not all Pros  

'Ol Dave's Woodshop - Where woodworkers are not all Pros
                                                                   "Where woodworkers are not all Pros"
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Garden hose nozzle display case
Over the last few years, I had began collecting old brass garden hose nozzles.  It all began a few years back with a metal detector that I borrowed one day from my brother.  I was using it to look around my yard for old coins.  I did find a few old wheat backed pennies and a mercury dime or two but interestingly enough, I found an old brass hose nozzle next to the foundation of my house.

Later on, after the discovery of this first old spray nozzle, I saw a couple more of these old nozzles at a garage sale and bought them.  I set them on the sill of the window in my wood shop and added to them with others through the next few years.  After the nozzles began collecting dust sitting on that sill for so long, I decided to make a display case with glass front doors to keep the dust off of them.

Face frame for nozzle display cabinetAs described in my golf ball display cabinet project, I decided to use some more of the left over hard maple from my workbench project to make the pieces for the case.  As you can see from the photo on the right, I began by making the face frame and securing the pieces by using pocket screw joinery.

The next task was to cut the top, bottom, sides and the two center shelves to size.  I then had a couple of other things to do.  The first thing was to determine the verticle distance between the shelves so that that distance would accommodate the length of the tallest spray nozzle that I had in my current collection.  When that distance was determined, I routed 3/8" deep X 3/4" wide slots into the sides at those positions to hold the shelves in place. 

Next, I needed to figure out the largest diameter of the bases of my nozzles.  When that was discovered, I then knew how to lay out the pattern to use for drilling recessed holes down into the shelf thicknesses so that the nozzles could be supported on the shelves.  I ended up using a 1 3/8" diameter Forstner bit to drill 3/8" deep holes into the shelves.

Clamped case and shelves after the glue upAfter drilling the holes, I used my Porter Cable Dovetail Jig to make the through dovetails joining the sides to the top.  After completing the dovetails, I assembled the top, bottom and side pieces and inserted the two shelves.  I then clamped the assembled shelves and case until the glue had dried as shown here on the right.

I then cut biscuits into the faces of the assembled pieces to join the face frame to the "box".  The photos below shows the face frame and assembled case prior to the glue up of the face frame to the case.
Display Cabinet Frame with biscuit detail
Display Cabinet Frame and glued shelves.

The next step was to assemble the face frame to the case with the biscuits and wait for the glue to dry.  At this point, the project looked like the photo below.

Display Cabinet with shelves and center stile.
Finished display cabinet minus doors after applied finish.
I decided to use the same "home brewed" finish that I used on my workbench which was a mixture of beeswax, turpentine and boiled linseed oil.  I applied this finish to the completed case and shelves prior to attaching the doors.  The project looked like the photo shown on the left after the finish had been applied.

Finished Display Cabinet with open door.I made the doors from 3/4" thick hard maple and I used cope & pin joinery on the them which I made on the router table.  I then ordered the glass for the doors and placed it into the stiles and rails using a small bead of clear silicone at various spots in the grooves to eliminate rattling.  The photo on right shows what the display case looked like when it was completed.

The finished product is shown below mounted on the east wall of my woodshop.  I ended up cleaning the brass nozzles from their tarnished state with a solution of equal parts of table salt and vinegar.  After soaking them for several hours, I polished them with a soft brass brush and placed them in the mounted display case.  I discovered after cleaning them that one of the nozzles had a marking that stated:  Patented March 4, 1876.  As you can see, I have room for more!

Finished Display Cabinet With Displayed Nozzles.

This was a really fun project.  I don't know for sure if it was because of making the case itself or the idea of displaying something most people would not do. Knowing for sure that I'm not perfect, after gluing up the case and shelves, I realized that my original intention was to drill the Forstner made recessed holes into the floor (or bottom) of the case, too.  Oooops!  At any rate, I think the case looks kind of cool.  What do you think?  Let me know.

Your comments are welcome and you can get them to me by the e-mail address below.


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