Woodworking Projects

   Lacewood and Maple Dresser

   Indoor Weather Station Rebuild

(updated 10-July-2010)

   Triple Bunk Bed

   Bench/table in Cherry

   CD Storage Chest

   Kitchen Cabinet Spice Rack

   Queen Size Sleigh Bed in Cherry

   Twin Size Bed in Cherry

   Bench in Ash

   Entertainment Armoire in Pine

   Bunk Beds in Ash

   Dresser in Ash

   Nightstand in Mahogany

Indoor Weather Station Rebuild

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Well I came across two of these cheap indoor hanging weather stations at a yard sale and decided to remake them into something a bit more appealing. Overall this is an exercise in having some fun with scrapheap parts.

Here's the "before" picture.

And two "after" pictures. Note that the difference in color of the glass is purely due to the lighting in the room.

When I called these things "cheap", I meant it. It consists of a thermometer, a barometer and hygrometer mounted to a faux-wood piece of hardboard. Each round instrument casing is gold colored plastic. Two of the three instruments have real glass windows while the third is plastic - guess which one is badly scratched?

Most similar indoor weather stations mount the instrument proud of the panel's face - I assume this is to give room for the instrument itself. Because the existing devices are cheap plastic, my options were to either replace the round body or to recess mount the instruments. I opted for the latter to achieve a different look and to simplify the work. The end result is a free-standing unit with an open back (the instruments have to be access to free air). I made one unit using all three instruments. The other only has the thermometer and hygrometer (the barometer was in bad shape so I ditched it).

I'm not going to go into detail on the construction - basic woodworking skills are required. And naturally proper precautions are necessary when handling all tools.

Taking the original unit apart is pretty easy. The only parts of the original structure I kept were the front glass window, the plastic ring standoff immediately behind the glass, and the instrument itself. The rest went into the trash. To rebuild the unit, I looked in my wood scrap heap for suitable lumber. I made one unit from a piece of maple with some rot and made the other from pear wood with a live edge sandwiched around a piece of cherry.

To remount the instruments, I used an arbored hole saw mounted to a drill press to make the main hole. I then used a rabetting bit on a router to create the body cavity into which the glass and instrument will sit. This is pretty standard stuff. To re-assemble the unit, I used 2-part clear epoxy. But first I made sure the glass was as clean as since I won't have access to the rear of the glass after the exposy sets. For the unit with the barometer, I replaced the old plastic window with a new one made from think acrylic. I made spacers from some 3/8 inch thick polycarbonate. The finish on the wood is just Danish oil.

The final units are meant for surface placement (instead of the original wall wall mount).


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