DIY : Making a Solar Dehydrator – ClickClackClunk – Medium
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Here I make the box for the Solar Dehydrator.
I’ve been wanting for a while now to make a solar dehydrator. We have all sorts of fun things growing in the garden now and I’d like to make sure that nothing goes to waste. For preservation I have two options: jams or drying. So, let’s make something to dry stuff in! How hard can it be?
If you’d prefer to watch the video:
I used pine slats from an old bed for the window and sides of the box.
The window was joined with lap joints. I set the tablesaw to exactly half the height of the wood and chopped it out by running the wood over the saw until it was smooth. It took a long time to hog these out. Professionals use a saw with a long arbor and a dado stack to make stuff like this go fast. I have no such luxury.
Maybe next time I’ll make a jig and do this on the router. Maybe that is faster.
Lots of glue and clamps later it was square and solid.
I also took my router and inset a groove for where the glass will go. I still have to find a piece of glass that is the right size (53cm square).
I wanted to use box joints on the box itself. This was my first frustrating attempt.
This was my bazillionth frustrating attempt. I eventually got something passable by creating a small jig to “hop” over the width of the saw blade.
It didn’t go well. I have decided I do not like box joints. I should have just done this by hand.
These god damned thing didn’t mate and I threw out all this work.
And I decided to just make small wooden brackets for the corners and get on with my life.
It’s ugly. I don’t care.
And then I screwed on some scraps for the bottom.
And some handles and a place for the back hinge to lay flat on.
What I learned this week
I learned that I can’t be so blase about complicated stuff like box joints. I see them used online all the time.. and I thought it would be easy. I’m sure that there is a better way to do this than I did.. but I can’t think of it yet.
I keep butting up against a behavior of mine where I try to do the most complicated solution that I can think of instead of what is quick and easy — and likely to turn out nicest. I want to push myself, but I think I also have to find a way to get comfortable with so-so solutions.
Next week I’ll be making a simple stand for this to sit off the floor. I also need to deal with ventilating the box, since I was told that is critical in not “cooking” the fruits and vegetables inside.
Thanks for reading!