Thursday, 29 March 2018

Keep on trugin...

It's been a while since a made my last trug (about 6 years I think) and as I had some wood from an old shelf unit I though it was about time I made another, this time I've made one with a fold-able handle.

And here it is -

One rustic trug.

Here's the material for this project -

Doesn't scream trug does it?
As I said this is an old unit, which up until recently was in my daughters bedroom holding her ever expanding book collection, she now has an antique oak bookcase which I recently restored so this old slot together unit was surplus to requirements, I was just going to lay it on it's side and line it with plastic to use as a planter, but as we're changing the garden around this wasn't very practical.

There's quite a bit of wood here, but I felt like a trug was in order, and because all the bits of wood have notches cut out I was wondering what else I could do with it, there are loads of things I could make, but I like making trugs.

Firstly I cut two pieces of wood with a curved side, these make up the sides of the trug, then the idea is to nail slats between these two pieces to make up the basket part of the trug.

Sides cut - 

Should make for a good trug.

Marking curves onto wood is easy enough, have a look here at the last trug I made, it also has a quick guide on how to make curves on bits of wood - Simple trug how to (opens in new window)

So with the sides done it was time for the slats, these I cut using my bandsaw, but a table saw or even a hand saw will do just as well.

Slats cut - 

I'll tidy these up later.

Each slat is about 20mm thick (3/4 of an inch) and 25.5cm (10 inches) long the length of the slats gave me the width of the trug, so it ended up being 25.5cm (10 inches) wide and about 35.5cm (14 inches) long and about 9cm (3 and 1/2 inches) deep, so it's not huge but will hold a fair amount of stuff.

I glued and nailed the slats to the sides of the trug - 

Yes it has gaps.

The gap between each slat is roughly 20cm (3/4 of an inch) so it has gaps, but it's okay for apples or spuds and other things, and it's easy enough to put a bag or cloth liner in it for smaller items.
I used a good quality wood glue and annular nails to fix the slats, it's a good idea to drill small pilot holes for the nails to prevent splitting, just use a drill bit that's thinner than the nail.

Annular nails have what looks almost like a thread running along part of them, this helps the wood fibres to bind to the nail and helps prevent the nails being pulled out, if you've ever taken a pallet apart you'll have no doubt come across this type of nail.

Annular nail - 

You can see what looks almost like a thread.

With that done it was on to the handle, this is made in three parts, two sides and a top piece. The two sides are held to the main body of the trug using a wooden peg, this is what also allows the handle to fold.

To make the handle I drilled out the hole for the peg in two bits of wood, and then set about drawing a shape onto each bit of wood, then I cut out the shape on the two bits of wood, I ended up with a kind of fish shape.

Two sides of the handle - 

I did say kind of fish shaped.

The top piece of the handle is fixed to the side pieces using a couple of screws and glue on each end.
Rather than have just a flat handle I've cut it into a bow shape to fit the hand better.

Marking out the handle shape - 

It feels better in the hand, rather than just a flat bar.

To fix the handle to the body of the trug I've used two pieces of 9mm dowel, the dowel is glued into the body of the trug and the handle is held onto the pegs using a small pin, this gives the trug a more rustic look, well I think it does.

Handle peg (trug body) - 

You can make out the wooden dowel.

Handle peg and pin - 

The pin is easy to tap out if the handle breaks.

And here's the finished trug after a coat of wax - 

Perfect for apples.

That's about it, it's a really simple thing to make, it uses very little wood, I've still got enough to make a few more like this left over, it's something that would make a good project for kids to try, you don't need loads of power tools, it can be made totally by hand and in numerous different designs and it's practical as well, even if you don't use it for collecting apples it would make a great fruit bowl for a kitchen table.

Thanks for reading.

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