I live in a house that is easily more than 100 years old. Living here has taught me that the term ‘this ole house’ is the basis of conversation with the repairman I called last week, rather than a syndicated production. By the generosity of God, I grew up on a farm learning to do all that you can to save paying others to do what you might accomplish. Life has taught me that you are a much better person if you mow your own yard rather than get a job, that pays enough money, that after taxes, you can still afford to hire someone else, to mow it for you, and pay for their weekly service, while you also pay a monthly fee to go to the gym or health club, in order to have a place to exercise.

Think about it……..Bob

Monday, August 8, 2011

Finally Finely Filtered - a Pond Filter

About three years ago I decided to have a Koi and Goldfish pond in my back yard.  I wanted it to be like a small eco system so I would not have to spend a great deal of time on maintenance.  I know now that some sort of filter is required because of algae.  I considered one with a water pump that pulled water through a sponge type material.  It was expensive, and I did not really want to try to keep ahead of the fact that the filter will slowly become clogged with debris, need cleaning, and at the same time will cause the pump to work harder and harder, or even burn up the electric motor of the pump.  So I spent many hours thinking of other alternatives.

I had already purchased an air pump for ponds from, model AP-20 PONDMASTER (worth every penny).  I wanted to insure enough air was available during the hot summer months, as well as keeping the water slowly moving.  Before that I was using an aquarium pump and had a stone bubbler submerged.  I purchased that pump at PetCo, model AC-9903 for 13 – 106 gallon tanks, a great pump but not for ponds.  There is something about the pressure caused by the depth and volume of the water that makes it necessary to have a “for real” pond air pump.  I also realized that when I had kept an aquarium, it was using an under gravel filter system that circulated the water with bubbles from a pump.  I had to figure how I would apply this to my current situation.

I came up with a design using PVC pipe and here is what I did:

Materials list:  
4 inch PVC pipe – 1 piece 5 inches long
4 inch to 2 inch PVC reducer – 1
2 inch PVC pipe – 1 piece 7 inches long      
2    2 inch PVC couples
Now the ½ inch PVC pieces:
   2 plugs (slip) with hex head
   5  T’s (slip)  Slip means smooth inside for gluing, not threaded
   1  T (center is threaded with ends slip)
   1 elbow (slip)
   1 adapter (one end slip / one end threaded outside)
   1 adapter (one end slip / one end threaded inside)
   2 – 8 foot ½ inch pipe
1 PVC cutter (looks like a pair garden pruners)
1 small can of PVC glue
1   ½ inch plastic sprinkler hose attachment piece, threaded
1 Army cot mosquito net cover (to make filter bags)
Plastic zip ties about 14 inches long

Total cost is approximately $35.00, depending where you shop.  I went to Lowe’s and an Army Surplus Store.  The 4 inch pipe is the bubble chamber and the 2 inch pipe is the chimney.  You might get a plumber to give you his discarded pieces.

Please note that my pond has a top measure of 18 feet by 14 feet with 4 sides that slope at approximately 45 degrees down to the bottom.  Here it measures 4 feet square on the flat, and is 4 feet deep with lily pads.  My design is for the filter to sit on a slant rather than flat on the bottom.  This means that the measures and assemble may differ in your situation depending on where it will be positioned in your pond.

To get started I cut two (2) pieces of ½ inch pipe about 5 inches long.  These are to be the chamber supports.  I measured about 1 inch from the end and marked the pieces.  These pieces should be longer if your filter is sitting on a flat bottom which makes it perpendicular to the base.  This position would require the bubble chamber to be raised enough for the air hose to be attached.  (You will probably understand this after you have read my narrative.)

I used my band saw to make this cut.  I attached a fence for a guide because I wanted my blade to be just inside the interior wall of the piece and cut straight.  The cut is length wise up to the mark, remove, and cut across at the mark so that you have that section removed.

This is a chamber support.  Keep the pieces cut away, we will use them later. 

Next, cut a piece of ½ inch PVC pipe about 2 ½ inches long.  This piece is used to join two of the (slip) T’s.  Dry fit the short piece of pipe into the ends of two T’s to make a single unit, and insure that you have about ¾ to 1 inch between the T’s.  It will be critical that the two T’s are aligned properly before gluing.  This glue sets in about 10 seconds, so dry fit and mark alignment on each piece each time from here until fully assembled and finished before any glue is applied.  Here you might use the two chamber support pieces and dry fit them in the center hole of each "T".  Insure they are in perfect alignment with each other.  Then with a  felt tip pin you can mark on the white PVC T's and short piece of pipe joining them.  This will insure that after the glue is applied and you push the pieces together, then these marks will guide you.  Just be sure the short piece of pipe joining them does not get reversed.  When applying the glue, use the ‘applicator top’ of the can and swab glue in the opening of the T that will receive, as well as the end of the piece going into that T.  Once glued & aligned properly, you should dry fit the two chamber support pieces

and be sure they are in alignment.  The chamber supports are not glued yet because they must be finely tuned in order to get the correct position for attachment to the bubble chamber.  This means that you should turn them so that the cut away area now may be in full contact with the outside of the 4 inch bubble chamber.

Now mark the T’s and supports where they join, and draw the outline of the supports onto the outer wall of the bubble chamber so you will know where to put glue.  A special consideration has to be made at this point.  The top of the chamber will have the reducer added.  Dry fit the reducer top on the chamber and see if the outer lip goes below the mark that is the top of the support.  You may need to shorten the supports. 

Remove one support from the T, add glue, and replace it being very careful to align the support with the marks for that T and let the glue set.  Follow this with the other support and this time, check the alignment by holding the bubble chamber against the two supports to see if any adjustment is needed, then give that a minute to set.

Next apply generous glue to the supports face that will contact the chamber and a generous amount to the chamber within the lines that show where the supports will mate.

Clamp this and give it about an hour to set and dry.  If you are successful in the alignment you will be able to see that the chamber has not only made contact with the supports where you cut away part of the pipe,

but it will sit on the notched part just above the T’s.  Once this has dried you should take the two pieces that were cut from the chamber supports and glue those for additional strength and reinforcement to the supports.

This is not necessary, but may extend the life of your filter by preventing detachment. 

Now cut two pieces of ½ inch pipe 1 1/2 inches long, longer if you want a wider base.  These are used to attach the two (slip) T’s that will accept the feet.

This is where you will decide if your filter is to sit on a flat bottom or a slant.  Once the dry fit is accomplished and you position them, then mark and glue them.  I will refer to one side as the ‘outside’ and the other as the ‘air approach side’.  From the ½ inch pipe, cut two (2) pieces 9 1/2 inches and one (1) 5 ½ inches.  These are glued into the T’s with the (2) 9 ½ inches on the back side of the chamber where the supports are, and the 5 ½ inch is on the front of the ‘outside’ T.  Next is the front foot for the air approach side (here it is the front right section assembly).

Turn the unit upside down and dry fit a (slip) T and a piece of ½ inch pipe about 2 inches long.  Adjust the length of the piece of pipe until the center exit of the T is in alignment with the center of the air chamber.  Mark the alignment so that the center exit of the T is in the same plane as the T it is joining, and glue. 

Next you will need the elbow and a piece of the ½ inch pipe about 3 ½ inches long so you may adjust length and dry fit to position. 

The elbow and short piece of pipe are fitted into the center exit of that last T that you just added. 

 By adjusting the length of the pipe joining the elbow and the T you will move the elbow to a position that is approximately center of the air chamber.  The dry fit of the elbow can be better aligned if you use a long piece of the ½ inch pipe as a guide (but do not glue this one) through the center of the air chamber.  Once this is accomplished you should mark and then glue the elbow into position.  This is also a good time to add ½ inch pipe that goes into the end of the T and completes the front part of the foot on the ‘air approach side’ (bottom left of photo).  Glue it first and then measure it against the other foot to see where to make your cut. 

Take one of the ½ inch PVC plugs and sand, or cut, the ears of the hex head so that the plug is rounded on the head and will fit into the elbow.  Mark half way on the plug and glue it into one of the slip end of the last T that has the threads in the inside of the center hole.  Make sure to leave half of the plug sticking out of the end.  This is the "air attachment unit".  Those threads in the center exit are so the air attachment can be screwed into it. 

Now get the two adapters, about 2 inches of pipe, and the other plug.  The plug is to be glued into the slip end of the adapter with the threads on the outside.  When they are dry fitted, there should be about 1/4 inch of the plug shaft showing between the hex top and the mouth of the slip end of the adapter. In that area you will drill two 5/64 inch holes slightly angled down on opposite sides after the glue sets.  After you have the system working, you might add more holes or larger ones depending on the power of your pump.  This is ready to glue.  Next screw these two pieces into the mating end of the other adapter with the threads on the inside but do not tighten.  Let the glue dry for about an hour, then drill the 2 holes and add the short piece of pipe.

  This is the "bubbler".

Dry fit the bubbler into the top of the air attachment unit.   As soon as you have the two together, please blow into the T’s center hole and be sure that the bubbler allows the air to flow out the drilled holes and the plug in the bottom prohibits.  Then fit the air attachment unit with the bubbler into the elbow.  You want the top of the bubbler, which is the top of the hex head plug, to be positioned such that the 2 holes will be about half way up the inside of the 4 inch chamber.  If not then remove the assembly and adjust the length of the 1/2 inch pipe to correct.  When this is all correct, you should glue the pipe into the bottom of the bubbler.  Now glue the bubbler into the top of the air attachment unit. 

Now glue the air attachment unit with the bubbler into the elbow and be sure that the center hole of the T faces to the side.  This is where the air hose will be connected.

 The bubble chamber should be about like this photo at this point.  Measure the distance from outside of one foot to outside the other and cut 2 pieces of the ½ inch pipe just about an inch longer (mine were about 10 inches long).

These new pieces are to be notched to lie across and on top of the longer two feet in the back of the chamber, and will support the brick that will be the ballast.  These two should be positioned perpendicular to the two longer feet behind the chamber and marked for the circular notches to be cut.  This is the hardest part since they need to make good contact.  Cut away some and check the fit, then shave some as you adjust.  When you get one right, then put the brick on the feet and let the first notched piece go between the chamber and the brick, then glue and clamp that one.  Now cut, adjust, glue, and clamp the other one.

While that glue sets you can glue the 2 inch reducer on the top of the 4 inch air chamber.  Then the 2 inch PVC pipe glues into the top of the reducer, and the 2 inch couple glues onto the top of the 2 inch pipe.  Again dry fit and remember that another 12 inches will be on top of that when the filter bag is attached, wet, and inflated by air and the flow of water upward.  If needed, you can adjust the length of the 2 inch pipe that is the chimney on top of the reducer.

After placing the brick on the feet, I realized that the brick is just barely short enough that it might slip off the support.  So I cut a 6 inches piece of ½ inch pipe and used my band saw to cut it in half from end to end.

 Turn the unit on its side and glue these two pieces in a position that will further support and stabilize the brick. 

 Now the brick should stay in the desired position.

Notch the brick at the midpoint of each end on top as a guide for the strap that will hold it on the assembly.  

I used plastic zip ties that can be purchased many places for my strap.  Mine were too short so I put them into each other until they were long enough to go around the brick.

Zip it tight and cut the extra off.

 The 2 inch couple on top of the chimney will prevent the bag (filter) from sliding off the top.

The air hose is attached using a piece designed for lawn sprinkler systems.  The air hose slips over one end and the other end screws into the threaded opening of the T.  There is no reason to glue this piece, just tighten by hand.

The filter is made from one of those mosquito nets that you can purchase from your local Army Surplus or Military Surplus stores (or you can find one on the internet).  It is made to be supported at each end and drapes over a metal cot, as in Army barracks beds.  I'm just guessing that it is about 6 1/2' long, 3' wide, and 4' tall, it kinda makes a box to cover a bed so a person can get away from mosquitoes.

I took one and cut along the seams to get it into flat pieces, then cut a long strip about 14 inches wide.  From this strip I cut pieces about 2 ft. long, fold it over to be about 12 x 14 and sew, with my sewing machine, the two outside edges which makes a bag almost square.  Now fold the open end back like a hem of 1 inches and sew it around leaving about 1/2 inch from the folded edge. 

Next I used a needle and some 2 pound fishing line to sew everywhere I had sewn with the sewing machine.  Just to get the most for my effort, I did sew twice with the fishing line.  The reason for this is that

 the sewing thread will deteriorate after about 3 or 4 uses of the filter.  With the reinforcement that the fishing line adds you will get to reuse these bags for a very long time (mine are in their third year).   Turn the bag inside out, snip the edge to make a cut about 1/4 inch, and

I slide a 14 inch Zip Tie into the path to go around the bag and out that same hole again.  The bag will be gathered at spots so even it out and then slip it over the 2 inch couple, making sure that it goes below the couple and zip the tie so that it tightens to the 2 inch pipe of the lesser diameter.  

Here I used a white net bag and red string so you could see how it will look.

These will last depending on leaves, grasses, algae, and such that gets filtered out of the water from the bubbles flowing up the air chamber with the chimney on top.  The indicator will be the air bubbles that you see on the surface of the pond.  Mine last about 3 months, and when I change them, I save the old ones.  I wash them under a faucet, scrub the material against itself and do some cleaning by hand, but no soap.  I hang them in a sunny place to dry out and if needed later I'll use a medium stiff brush for the final cleaning.  They are reusable to the point that since I started using them over 3 years ago I have not had to replace any.

 Above is my personal effort and the bags in the picture are not the right ones.  These are first ones and they did not do the job.  After I tested the first unit I made, I concluded that the pond would get back to clear, and pretty, twice as fast with two filters, so I made another and fitted them as shown.

One concern is a law of physics.  Air (like water) will flow to the path of least resistance.  When I used only one filter, it bubbled like crazy and I felt it was really doing its job.  Then I made another filter and added it to the system.  When I first slid the two down into the pond, I could only get one of the filters to bubble.  As I repositioned the unit by gently moving one higher than the other, I was able to get the other one to bubble, but the first one stopped bubbling.  I thought this is probably a result of one bubbler having more holes than the other, or holes in one bubbler might be larger than the other one. 

I kept checking on the system for about a 2 week period, and found that finally the air pressure in the assembly sort of equalized and as time passed the other filter began to gain momentum.  After being patient and giving it some time, the two filters are currently bubbling about the same amount, and I can live with that.

I took a piece of 1/8 inch nylon twisted rope about 20 feet long and tied one end to the brick on one of the filters and then the end to the other brick.  This is used to pull the filters up out of the pond for cleaning.  Then I made a small bug proof house with vents on each end and an aluminum sheet over the top for the pump.

You could use a 2 inch air chamber with a 1 inch chimney if your pond is not 4 feet deep.  There are many adaptations, combinations, and permutations that could allow you to customize this filter to your particular situation.

After I finished the filter and put it in my pond, I realized that at some time in the future I will have to be able to unscrew the top piece of the bubbler that was inside the 4 inch chamber.  The only access I had was down through the 2 inch chimney.

So I took one of the hex head plugs and made a trip to a local pawn shop.  I found that they have a wealth of metal sockets usually in a large box for customers to dig through and find what they need.

I found that a 24 mm socket would fit on the hex head plug, and I think it was only a couple of dollars. 

I took this home and found an old yard tool handle that had been broken, so I cut the splintered part off and that left an excellent handle for this new tool.  The first inch after the cut was used to cut into a square tenon that would fit into the drive hole for the socket. 

Then I drilled a hole for a dry wall screw in the center of that tenon. 

Next I got a slug like the ones you punch out of a metal 4 inch square box mounted in the ceiling for a light fixture to be mounted onto in a home.  I drilled the center of that slug with a hole slightly larger than the one in the tenon. 

Just a little grinding on the slug and it fit down inside the 24 mm socket. 

Now I have a specialty wrench for removing and reinstalling the bubbler for cleaning when I replace the filter bags. 

I also found a 5/64 inch old broken drill bit, so I mounted about a 1 inch piece of 1/4 inch dowel, with a hole drilled in the center, onto the broken bit for another tool to use for cleaning out the holes in the top of the bubbler.

And finally an old tooth brush that will go up into the inside of the removed part of the bubbler to insure that the inside is scrubbed out also.  After about a year in the pond the white PVC will be mostly black because of the algae growing on the surface.  This also gets inside the bubbler and will affect the air flow.

Thanks for looking and good luck, I hope this will help. 

Monday, May 9, 2011

Current Job occupying Bob .....

I am putting together the process, measurements, and plans for this grill....

Soon to come . . .

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Desk Chair Repair

“Desk Chair Repair or Replace”

The other day as I sat down into my desk chair, it seemed that just as I got firmly seated, the chair made some sort of adjustment.  As I leaned back in the chair, I realized that the back slid downward about an inch, and the arms had shifted also.  So I got out of my chair and inspected the sides of the seat.  The arm was attached to the side of the seat by two bolts, with two dowel pins spaced evenly between.  The holes for the bolts and the dowel pins were all in alignment and after years of resting on the arm and leaning back, the side board of the seat had given up the ghost.  I could also feel the split as I felt the fabric that covered the seat on the side.  The chair is one of those standard; 5 rollers, blue cloth covers seat and back, and the bolts going through the arms, into the sides and the back, are the joining factor to the assembly of the chair.

My first option was to go looking for a replacement.  Probably $150.00 to $300.00 is the range for a replacement.  My next thought was what to I do with the old one.  Do I just put in the big trash container so the city will haul it away?  Then I thought that I was going to have to dismantle it anyway, so lets see if I can get it apart all the way to the problem and maybe fix the chair to use again. 

So I started with a hex wrench for the bolts going through the arms and into the seat and the back.  There were two in the back and two in the seat on both sides.  Next I turned the remaining seat up side down and found 4 bolts holding the seat bottom tightly to the metal plate on top of the pedestal.  After removing those bolts, I now hold the seat by itself.  With the use of an awl and pliers I can remove the many staples around the perimeter that secure a black cover to the bottom side.  Once it is removed, approximately the same number of staples are in the upholstering fabric attaching it to the under side of the seat.  Before I removed that upholstery, I realized there were some more staples where the rubber foam was curled under to make the front lip rounded.  They also had to be removed.  At this point I could slide my fingers between the cloth covering, with the rubber foam also, and the wood frame to be sure the two are clear of each other.  I was very careful to kind of roll the cloth back over itself as if I would turn it inside out, but just far enough to allow me to slip the wood frame gently out from the rubber foam which encased the frame.  This allowed the rubber foam to remain in the cloth which will better keep the cloth in shape and the foam contained. 

The frame came out in about 5 pieces since it was broken.  The two sides were both split into two pieces and the front lip piece fell loose just as the sides fell apart. 

Now I am down to the wood structure and the webbing.

 I like to use my camera to record the procedure as I go, then I can always check back if I have any questions during reassembly.  I used large safety pins and put one at each intersection of the seat webbing.  Then I found my permanent marker to start making my map of what goes where; marking the webbing and each piece of wood : front, middle, back, top, bottom, right, left, side, and even braces are coded.  Arrows and anything else are used to direct me as to how it goes back together.

Before I take the frame apart, I mark each piece, the relative direction, and note the ends that join together.

Then as I get to other parts like the corner braces, I add more markings.  I marked the front of the webbing even though it was pined.  Once the staples were all out and the webbing removed, I removed all screws holding the corner braces in place.  The glue was old and the chair had been in use for about 20 years under my 200 pounds, so most pieces came apart with just a small tap of a mallet.

Finally the two sides were ready for inspection.

The problem was just as I suspected.  The pressure of leaning back, as well as the weight placed on the arms from getting in and out of the chair, has put the stress on the points where the arms are attached.  These points happen to wind up so that the grain of the wood travels through these points and this is where the wood weakened and split.  The only solution is to re-manufacture these two pieces or throw the chair in the dump.  I chose to repair.

The first step was to make two blanks of the same dimensions as the two sides.  These sides were 4 quarter stock.  I could use a 2x4 and mill it down for the thickness, or laminate two thinner pieces.  I felt better going to Lowe’s and finding two ½ inch thick, 4 inch x 4 foot, boards of Oak.  The wood was beautiful and I felt bad about using it in this way, but I needed strength.  I took these two boards back to my shop and used polyurethane glue with about a dozen clamps to laminate two pieces to make one. 

I very carefully inspected the grain of each board so that I might find the optimal strength by trying to mate the grain in contrast to each other as much as possible.

After the glue set I ripped and cut the blanks to the dimensions of the originals, shaped the corners, and chamfered the lateral edges to match the old pieces. 

Now I must drill the holes for the dowel pins and the bolts.  Their positioning is critical to the reassembly of the chair.  First thought was to use a piece of cardboard and make a template, and then I realized I could just clamp the original with its replacement and drill through the original holes into the blank.

 The holes for the arm were positioned very low which may have added to the weakness of the structure.  To guard against this, I decided to move the holes up about 5/16”, which results in the arms and back being raised (or offset) by that amount.  This will greatly decrease the possibility of the same problem happening again.  Once clamped together, I transferred my markings from the old to the new piece.

Holes for the dowel pins were 25/64” and the holes for the “T” nuts for the bolts were 5/16”.  The depth of the dowel holes were ¾” and the bolt holes were drilled through.  Since the arms are mounted to the outside of this piece and the cross pieces of the structure are attached by dowels to the inside of this piece, I had to drill both sides.  So after I drilled the holes for the arms, I removed the clamps, and what was the outside faces of these clamped pieces is now the two faces that are against each other.  This time I matched the pieces width and length because I did not want to shift (offset) the inside assembly in the manner I did the outside assembly.

At this time it is important to use 4 dowels and dry fit each arm to its respective side board.  It will be easier to make any adjustment before the box is assembled and the cushion and staples are added.  Once that is verified, my focus turned to detail work that if not attended to now will cause major problems during assembly.  The old glue needed to be removed from all surfaces that meet as well as all dowels and dowel holes.  The slightest amount of glue remaining on a dowel may cause a gap between pieces when reassembled.  I used a 1/8” chisel for dowels and holes; my disk sander took care of all surfaces with glue residue.  Be sure to check the bottom of all holes to insure that glue is removed also.  I tapped all dowels with a mallet to insure they were seated solidly, and if they were not – I removed them with a gentle squeeze of my pliers and a very small side to side wiggle.  Next I remembered that the “T” nuts will be higher than before, so I used a ¾” Forester bit to make a recess for each nut to be flush with the surface and not prevent the end of the joining piece from making contact with the side.

I am now ready for assembly.  The front of the seat box has two pieces with the front shaped in a curve, a spacer between them, and only the larger one has dowels to mate into the side.  I arranged these 4 pieces, then glued and nailed them so I had only one front piece of the box.  I also noted that since the arms would be slightly higher then the spacer had to be milled to accommodate the bolt going beyond the “T” nut.

While that glue set, I reviewed the pieces for assembly and noted that the “T” nuts needed attention.  It must be done before the front of the box is attached to the sides.  In the original assembly the nuts were slightly damaged when pressed or hammered into the sides.

By holding the nut with a pair of channel lock pliers, I could bend and re-orientate the barbs so they were assets rather that aggravations.

Also I like to install the nut with the barbs in diagonals rather than perpendicular to the grain.  This seems to put the same tension on each barb since none are running with the grain.

I measured the length of a dowel not seated in the pieces and marked the center on the side of all dowels.  This mark will guide how far to tap the dowel into the hole.  Once the “T” nuts were in place and hammered to hold, I was ready to glue and assemble.

My Pony bar clamps are the best tool for the glue-up since the clamp has a screw clamping design and that allows me to squeeze the pieces into perfect contact.

A few pencil marks guide as to where to apply the glue on the side piece where the end of the cross members will butt.  A 1/8” dowel about 4 inches long will insure the polyurethane glue was adequately applied in the dowel holes.  A small art paint brush will best coat the joining member and dowel pins with water.

Once assembled, I rechecked the clearance for the bolts that will mount the arms on the sides and possibly extend beyond the “T” nut.

I was surprised that all dowels went into the holes, the clamps made all surfaces come in contact, and the darn thing was square by the two diagonal measures from corner to corner.

After the box had cured, I made sure that the mounting plate on the pedestal of the chair with the rollers would match the bolt holes in the bottom of the seat.   To install the corner braces, I used yellow wood glue.  The manufacturer used ¾” dry wall screws to install braces in corners.  I replaced the screws with 1 ¼” dry wall screws and I predrilled (and re-drilled) holes with a 3/32” bit as I installed the braces.

A couple of hours for that to set and I am ready to inspect the wood for sanding or hand planning.  This is necessary to prevent the wood from rubbing the rubber foam and causing it to deteriorate unnecessarily.  Ruff or sharp places will chew at the foam.

Now I am ready for the webbing.

As I took the safety pins out of the webbing, I noticed the ends of each piece showing a lack of dependability.  I used a candle and moved each end near the flame to melt the nylon and kind of weld the strands together.

Snip the excess and melt so that you now have a seam that binds.  I was very careful to insure that the pieces were kept in proper orientation and order.

I used my electric stapler to attach the ends of each piece to the front of the box.  The old staple holes were a perfect guide as to where to place each strip.

Once attached, I now had to stretch and attach the other end to the back.  For this I decided to use a couple of short pieces of wood that were burly on one side.  They were kind of like rough sewn and not planed or sanded.  These two pieces made a sandwich with each strip and my Quick Grip clamp applied the pressure.  This left a 1 inch tongue for me to position and staple.

I did not attach the last two strips to the back.  This insured I had enough room to clamp and stretch work with the strips that weave through and go from side to side.  Once all strips were attached, I used my tack hammer to insure all staples were flattened.  Next I fitted this box into the rubber foam cushion still covered with the cloth upholstering and slid my hand into places to insure that the fit was right and not binding.  The first staples are placed in the rubber foam to position and create the front lip.  As I stapled the cloth to the bottom of the box I started with one staple in the center of each side, and then front and back.  Next each corner so that the cloth is in its best position and then as I pulled gently on the cloth to snug it for a firm tension, I completed stapling one side, the other side, the back, and finally the front.  Then I tapped all staples with my hammer.  When I positioned the black slick cover that goes on the bottom of the seat, I aligned the four holes in the cloth cover with the holes in the wood for the bolts and stapled the cloth at 3 points about 1” out around each of the 4 holes.  This assures that the alignment would not move.  The perimeter of this cover staples just as I did with the seat cover.  One staple in the center of each of the four sides, then the corners, then fill in the gaps doing one side, the opposite, the back, and then the front.  Each time I positioned the cover to staple, I insured the tension was equal and smooth, and with my hammer I flattened all staples.  With the seat upside down, I now attached the pedestal.  Before attaching the arms and back, I had to locate the holes where the arms mate with the side of the seat.  Remember the holes for the arms were raised up 5/16”, so now the fabric will interfere with the dowels and the bolts.  To correct this I used a small propane torch and a 16 penny nail held in a pair of vice-grip pliers.  I found the four holes, one at a time, on each side with my awl, and then heated the nail to red hot.  By inserting the nail where the awl was and moving it around slowly and gently, the cloth melted away where the new holes are located.  The arms and back can now be mounted with no problems.

My chair is now whole and sits better than ever.