Inside the Boleyn

This page is all about what's going on inside the workshop, latest projects or changes, action or inaction, a picture diary of a bloke's workshop.  Let's start with today the 2nd of November 2010  although the workshop has been up and running for over five years.  I have just finished a small project of turning 20 wooden cones for a jewellery display.  A chainsaw wielding friend supplied me with logs of wood each approx 8" in diameter and 10" long.  He gave me a selection of ash, holly and horse chestnut all from a local wood.  Well they're all done now.  Reckon I need a sweep up?  Nah, whatever for?

This one below is the 21st that never got finished.  It didn't need to be started but I was in a cone induced psychosis and out of control.  The centre of this piece of horse chestnut was wet and fibrous so I was relieved to be brought back from the brink of cone madness. 

Here's all the leftovers hanging around in front of the woodburning stove, but they don't know that. 

Here are some of the finished cones.  One of them is spalted beech from the logpile. 

 This one below is the spalted beech.  Got loads of it but left it uncovered outside by mistake and is mostly only fit for burning now.

And this below is a bit of ash.  The cone shape really accentuates the swirls of the grain. 

Here's some pictures of the finished jewellery display.   The jewellery is an unfinished project of my wife's sister who sadly lost her life to cancer last year.  She had collected beads for years from all kinds of sources with the dream of making jewellery with her mother once her children had grown up.  After her loss my wife and her mother decided to carry on with that dream and donate 10% of any profit made to her favourite charities.  From the Boleyn Workshop I am proud to present, Dawn Bespoke Jewellery.

The display boards are hessian covered chipboard squares connected with 3" rising butt hinges so they can be seperated easily for transporting. The log circles are attached to the boards from behind with countersunk screws.  The log circles again came from my chainsaw-wielding friend.  It's best to stay on the right side of him, old Edward Chainsaw Hands.

Well I'll tell what's next.  November 9th.  I am given some small brass weights to clean, the kind used on old kitchen scales.  Below I have arranged them in 4-4-2 formation.  The 8oz could be viewed as Benni Mccarthy playing at inside left as it is somewhat bigger and rounder than the others.

I'll get them up the Boleyn sometime and get them on the wire wheel.  That sorts the men from the boys. 

This next job's been on the cards for about two years.  Raising the height of the Coronet Minor.  It came on a wooden trolley with castors like the ones off your nans sofa. It was a sod to move around the workshop and so low I had to stop using it altogether which was a shame.  Anyhow once those bloody cones were done and cleared up I had some room to do this job.  I started by removing the Coronet Minor off the trolley.  Tell a lie, I had a sweep up first.

See what I mean about the castors off your nans sofa? Bloody rubbish.

Yeah well best get them off asap.  First thing was to add some cross timbers to the frame for fixing the new castors to and in that process raise the height.  These old decking timber offcuts are just the job and raise the height by nearly an inch. I added two swivelling castors at the front end and two fixed castors at the back.

Then by flipping it over and boarding it off with some old 3/4" ply flooring offcuts it is raised in height again and provided with a solid surface for the cabinet to be fixed to. 

And here it is, nearly two full inches higher and a damn sight more mobile. The downside is my next job staring at me right in the face, some bodyworks on the cabinet.  Looks my old Morris Ital ex P.O. van.  And I've got a photo around somewhere to prove it.

Yeah there it is below. In GPO red and rust just like the Minor.

23rd November 2010

Here's those weights after they've been on the wire wheel.  Even Benni has come up nicely even though he's been moved to right back and is now in a four three three formation.  It's called tactics, Avram. (PS: Glad you got sacked, Pete Site Admin)

On a different note I reckon that wire wheel would do a cracking job on the old dingleberries and clagnets. 

December 21st 2010.

Nothing at all has happened in the Boleyn Workshop for a week now.  Unless you can count trying to mend that damn palm sander that collapsed on me.  I think I'll leave that for now.

January 22nd 2011

Happy Belated new Year.  No, nothing has happened yet.  The palm sander still sits on the bench in pieces.  Spent the afternoon on the couch, in front of the stove, listening to R5live and reading.  Ah, peace and quiet.  Mission accomplished today.

February 15th 2011

Should have built myself a wooden doghouse as I am now in it for forgetting to buy a Valentines Day card. Ah well, hasta la pasta baby.

February 28th 2011

Had a sweep up.  Is it worth a photo?  No.

March 21st 2011

Chucked the palm sander in the bin.

April 14th 2011

Wedding Anniversary.  Even I didn't dare go in the Boleyn Workshop today.

May 1st 2011

Oiled my Dads Hornby railway engine.

May 21st 2011

Looked around the workshop and decide that although the Hammers have been relegated, the Boleyn Workshop remains a Premier League workshop.  And like the West Ham squad it needs a good sweep out.

June 13th 2011

Another school homework project.  This time it's a model of Big Ben and another first for the Boleyn Workshop.  My little assistant was into the Boleyn ahead of me sorting out the timber for the project.  Some old skirting board offcuts, a section of 2"x2" which I had prepared for sawhorse legs (thief!) and an offcut of decking frame.  A design had already been prepared so it was just down to measuring and cutting.  I don't know how my fingers got on the cutting list but they ended up on it with the last cut of the day.

Well it wasn't as bad as it could have been and its the first accident in the Boleyn for two years.  Unless you count the signing of Benni Mcarthy.

November 7th

Arrival of a Coronet Major fitted with the speed reduction wheel.

December 18th

Looked in the workshop and gloated over my Majorette.  That sounds a bit dodgy.  I asssure you it's a machine. 

January 2012

Looked in the workshop and quickly shut the door again.

January 24th

Went up the workshop to get some bits.  Decided to put the Minor up for sale.  It's been a great little machine but my plans have changed and need something more substantial again.

February 2012

Having been given the plans for a top bar beehive before Christmas, it was time to make a start in order to be ready for the Spring.   The plans, which a friend had downloaded from, were simple enough and needed no special tools or materials.  A top bar hive is a more natural way of keeping bees, less labour intensive and with a far lesser need for specialist equipment.  It may not produce the high amounts of honey but for me is more about living with bees in the garden.  I provide them a home and they pollinate my flowers and vegetables.  Or else... (As of July 2012 no bees, Pete Site Admin) (As of April 2014 no bloody beehive either.  Sold it to my plumber and good riddance., Pete Site Admin)

March 2012

I managed to use all reclaimed timber and had plenty of nails, screws bolts etc in stock.  The roofing felt came from stock surplus from a garden cabin. I only had to buy some galvanized mesh for the bottom of the hive.  The pictures of the finished hive can be seen here www.BoleynWorkshop/BoleynBeehive

April 2012  

The workshop has become unmanageably cluttered and is no longer acceptable even to myself.  It's time for action.  There are two Majors, a Majorette and a Minor all waiting for my attention.  The Minor is going to be sold so that is put to one side waiting to be photographed.  One of the Majors, bought only for it's speed reduction pulleys, is stripped and stacked on the bench to be sold for spares.  The other, locally acquired for once, is being kept for woodturning.  The Majorette gets hoisted up on to the bench to await inspection and renovation which hopefully won't be too far off.

June 2012.

To get in to the swing of things I decided to start with a small project, to clean up and refit a blade to the Coronet Imp.  This has stood idle since I snapped a blade some time ago and has been a source of irritation ever since.  I have needed it several times but not had the time or mobility to sort it.  House decoration has been another unwelcome interference to my workshop projects but now the bulk of that has been completed it's time to turn my attention to more important things, my machinery.  The Imp was easy to clean up, I just attached a 1/2" flattened pipe to my dust extractor and drew up all the accumulated sawdust from the inside of the casing and parts.   Why don't I do this more often?  It looks great when it's done and it makes sense to have all your machinery available.  Fitting the blade was a piece of cake (Victoria sponge with jam and buttercream filling) now I have the knack and I feel good about having got it back to working order.

Next up is the bodywork on the Minor cabinet.  There is a  medium size section of rust and bad repair work on one corner with a small amount of perforation.  It wouldn't take a lot of prep and spraying to make it look like (nearly) new again.  The rest of the cabinet is passable apart from one shelf though I wonder if I should remove the lathe and worktop to do the whole thing.  As it is going up for sale I don't think I will bother but would definitely if I was going to keep it. 

June 22nd 2012 

Have a look below for a quick run through of the restoration.  For a more detailed look then go to coronet minor. 

These pics show the worst affected areas.

 The cabinet door finished. (below)

The cabinet primed and ready for painting.

And painted...well, front and side anyway. 

I am well pleased with the finish.  It would  have been a bit easier to totally strip the cabinet before attempting the repainting but as I am teaching as neighbours kid to turn wood at the same time, it just wasn't possible.

Next job is to refit the cabinet door and shelf.

Just for the record, this site has had 122 visits in the last seven days.

June 28th

Drove down to Sidmouth in Devon to collect the latest addition to the Boleyn Workshop, a Coronet Minorette.  I have been after one of these for ages and finally one has come along at a good price. See Coronet Minorette

July 2nd 


The door and shelf have been refitted and the cabinet looks like it has just left the Derby factory in 1967.  It just needs some large sideburns.

I gave the office area a late spring clean on the weekend as even I had gotten fed up with it.  It's nice to be able to sit down and watch Euro 2012 highlights without breathing in a 80:20 ratio mixture of sawdust and spider shit.  There were things I hadn't seen for months and even noticed my neighbours broken table glaring at me from the top shelf where it's been waiting vainly for repair since the World Cup 2010.  "I don't want to wait in vain" sang Bob Marley or something like that anyway but it is no consolation to that table.  Well, it's prioritising isn't it.

Speaking of priorities the Majorette is up on the bench at least, a step nearer to attention.  And as I have been getting enquiries about the Minor which was supposed to be finished by now I had better get cracking on it.  The cabinet is done and the table just needs a few coats of varnish.  All the extras bar the mortising attachment and the speed reduction pulleys are clean now and these two won't take long.  The motor cowling needs repainting but do I want to take it that far?  It would look better but then there's the gearbox to consider so where do I stop?  I may offer it to any prospective buyers and negotiate.  I am pleased at the interest so far.

A Coronet Major owner in Australia is interested in a grinding wheel and arbor for his machine.  But it will depend on the shipping costs.  I have stripped it and cleaned it in preparation just in case.  It is always interesting to strip and refit all the components of an attachment.  One thing is always constant and that is the quality of every single part.  It is the same size arbor and guard that fits the Minor but with a different bracket for attaching to the machine and painted  maroon rather than red. 

And in the meantime I am getting on with restoring attachments for the Minor.  I have finished the speed reduction pulley see here at Coronet Minor And next up is the mortising attachment.  The machine was sitting in a Seaton garage for three years but this jig seems to have been left on the beach.

July 17th.  The mortising jig is fully restored now but a batch of tools needing refurbishment have arrived from Workaid so they have taken preference on the workbench.  It is only a selection of screwdrivers and smoothing planes so it will not take long.  I enjoy working on the planes, I did many of these a few years ago and know the components and assembly well now.  These are in relatively good condition just needing derusting and a good clean before sharpening the blade.  I always wonder in whose hands they will end up in and whereabouts they will be earning a living for someone.

July 24th

The planes and screwdrivers are done and Terry has collected them to be put with the kits.  The planes are Nos 4, 4 1/2 and 5 from left to right.  I cannot help myself but to do a complete job on these planes.  Every nut, bolt and component is undone or removed and cleaned before reassembly.  It verges on OCD which can only be good news for the future owner.  They have basically been de-rusted, repainted where necessary and the wooden handles applied with linseed oil.  The blades have only been slightly honed as they may well be redone on inspection.  I never got around to photographing the screwdrivers and to be honest did you really want to see them?

September 2012

Advances have been made on the Minorette refit.  Mr Derek has sent me some pictures of the progress he has made and reminds me I promised him an on/off switch and the mortising jig.  Fortunately he is going to come and collect as I am laid up.  Couldn't even lift the jig at present.

What's new?  A Coronet International Woodworker is featuring for the first time, do the link or see the menu for pictures and text.

More photos on the Coronet Imp page

A Coronet Minor added to Readers Machines from Chris. 

October 2012

A Coronet Major in its third family generation added to Readers Machines from Martin

(or will be when I remember how to magic the photos up.)

And that's about it for this year.  Next up is 2013.

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