Hands On

MAR/APR 2002
Volume 45/Issue 2

Contest Winners
First, Second and Third Place Winning Projects
Project Articles
The Garden Bench
Wren and Blue Jay Bird Houses
Tapered Planter Box

Ask Smitty
Owner’s Gallery
Letters from Owners
Academy Notes
Finishing Touches - Pt.4 Applying a Synthetic Finish
Service Pointers
Disc Sander
Safety Tips
Ladder Safety

What's New
Hands-On Timeless Classics Now Available on CD ROM

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National Woodworking Academy in Dayton, OH

Online Accessory Catalog
Request Printed Accessory Catalog
Online Replacement Parts Catalog

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MARK V Demo Near You

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Blue Jay Bird House
Wren Bird House

Blue Jays are often loud, always protective of their turf and beautiful birds to have around. This house provides ample space for Blue Jays to raise a family and a convenient hinged top for clean-out once they've moved on. You can make two of these attractive little houses from a single, 6-foot 1" x 6" piece of lumber. Here's how:

Step 1: Start by cutting a Front (A), Back (B), Bottom (C) and Roof (D) from each 3-foot long piece of 1" x 6" wood.

Step 2: Use your Bandsaw to resaw the remaining piece of stock in half to make the two Sides (E). Since this piece is too small to safely run through a thickness planer, use your Shopsmith Belt Sander to bring these pieces to their 5/16" thickness and smooth their resawn surfaces.

Step 3: Cut the two sides (E) to their 8-5/8" length...then set your Miter Gauge to 70-degrees to form the angled top edges, as shown in the drawing.

Step 4: Return your Miter Gauge setting to 90-degrees, tilt your saw table to 20-degrees and bevel the tops of the Front (A), Back (B) and the ends of the Roof (D), as shown in the drawing.

Step 5: Drill a 1-1/2" entrance hole in the Front (A), then drill a 1/4" hole to accept the dowel perch (F) and another 1/4" diameter mounting hole in the Back (B).

Step 6: Use small galvanized or aluminum nails and waterproof wood glue to assemble the House. Since the Sides, Front and Back are nailed directly to the 3/4" thick Back and Bottom, pilot nail holes will not be necessary with this House.

Step 7: Mount the Roof (D) to the Back (B) with 1" x 1" brass hinges.

Step 8: Tap the Perch (E) into place. It should fit snugly without glue, but if it doesn't, a little glue will help hold it in position.

Step 9: Apply the finish of your choice (see the Tips For Bird Houses box). Once the finish has dried, screw the House to your favorite tree. Blue Jay houses should be hung 5' to 10' above ground.


View Plans &
Assembly Drawings

Blue Jay House Plans
Wren House Plans
List of Materials

Printer Friendly PDF copy of Instructions