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Volume 47/Issue 5

Project Articles
Living Room Sofa Table
Nob Hill Cable Car
Two-Shelf Telephone Stand/Side Table

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Letters from Owners
New Baby Workshop Calendar
Academy Notes
Hardwood Information You Should Know - Pt 2
Service Pointers
Disc Sander

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Safety Lessons I've Learned

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The Nob Hill Cable Car

Enjoy a weekend of great fun building this child's Cable Car replica

Here's a toy that brings to mind all the charm of San Francisco's famed Cable Cars - the clanging bells, the roller coaster hills and the thrill of seeing such sites as Fisherman's Wharf, Nob Hill and Golden Gate Park. Build it as the perfect gift for a favorite child this Holiday season...or for yourself!

The construction of this toy requires a series of simple sub-assemblies, while ready-made wooden toy wheels help make construction even easier. For best results, we recommend that you read through all of the instructions before beginning. Ready? Let's go!

1. If you're making just one car, prepare a 1/2" x 3-1/2" x 36" long piece of stock by either resawing or thickness planing a 1" x 4" piece of nominal stock to the proper 1/2" thickness. Also, have on hand, a 36" length of 1/4" diameter hardwood dowel -- 6" of 3/4" dowel -- and some 3/4" stock. We used poplar for our example, but clear pine works just as well.

2. Cut all pieces to size according to the List of Materials, using your Bandsaw or Table Saw. WARNING: Since many of the Cable Car parts are small, be sure to use proper safety equipment to control and guide your stock when making all cuts.

3. Lay out and drill 1/4" dia. by 1/4" deep holes in the Base (A), Roof (B) and Ends (C)...as well as the 1/4" dia. through-holes in the Axle Blocks (J). When laying out the holes in the Base, Roof and Sides, accuracy is important, since the Side Poles must be parallel once assembled.

4. Drill 3/4" dia. by 1/8" deep holes in the Ends (C) for the Lights (M)...then drill the 1" dia. window holes in the Sides (D), as indicated in the drawings.

5. Form the contour on the top of the Roof Vent (E), using your Disc or Belt Sander.

6. Glue and clamp the Axle Blocks (J) to the Axle Spacers (I); the Roof Vent (E) to the Roof (B); the Rear Seats (C) to the Rear Seat Back (F); and the Front Seats (H) to the Sides (D). Once the glue has dried thoroughly, square-up the Front and Rear Seat Assemblies using your Disc Sander.

7. Check the fit of the Side Poles (K) and Corner Poles (L) in the holes indicated in the Roof, Base and Ends. NOTE: Since dowel stock varies slightly in diameter, you may find that it's necessary to taper the ends of the Poles so they will fit easily into the holes for gluing.