They are fun to make and give as gifts.
Step 1: Tools and Materials
Chisel (be sure to buy chisels pre-sharpened)
1/8 inch drill bit
5/16 inch drill bit
Step 2: Find a Good Starting Branch With "crotch"
Step 3: Strip the Bark
Beware of sharp chisels and klutzy hands.
Step 4: Cut Off Excess Appendages
Step 5: Mark Wall Side for Rip Cut
Position the branch roughly in line with the blade.
Step 6: Rip Cut the Wall Side
Place the table saw's fence lightly along the right part of the branch.
Use a rip stick to help to guide the branch back through the blade, and use a regular push stick to guide the branch from its end.
Complete one pass, turn off the saw, raise the saw blade another centimetre or so, and repeat.
Step 7: After Finishing Rip Cut...
Step 8: Cut to Length
Step 9: Round Off the Hook
Step 10: Drill Holes
Use a 1/8 bit or so for the main holes, then recess the hole slightly using a 5/16 inch or so bit.
Step 11: Sand
Step 12: Optional: Add Some Decoration
First, lightly sketch out your design, then use a Dremel tool to carve along the guide lines.
Be sure to re-sand over the decoration after using the Dremel tool. Fold the sand paper to get into the little design cracks. Canned air will help remove the sand dust from the cracks.
Step 13: Prep for Staining
Step 14: Stain
Use the little pyramid thingies to hold the hook up off of the table surface.
Use a hammer and nail to create little holes in the inner lip of the stain can; it will help keep the drips in the can.
Step 15: Polyurethane
Be sure to stir well first.
Watch out for bubbles when applying.
Step 16: OPTIONAL: Wood Plug Cover for Hat Pins
A set of hat pins (the kind with the pretty coloured ball ends) work great to hold the hook to a wall, but for an added flourish you can cover the balls with a wood plug that looks pretty cool.
This photo shows a plug head using Cottonwood. Cottonwood has a vein running right through the centre of its branches and, when looking at a branch head-on, almost looks like a star.
Step 17: Optional Wood Plug, Step 1
- A pinky-sized slice of a stick, about 1/3 inch thick.
- A 5/32 inch drill bit.
- The hat pin.
Step 18: Optional Wood Plug: Drill Partial Hole
Pre-measure using the drill bit just how far down into the stick slice you can go without drilling all of the way through. Stick a piece of tape at the location on the drill bit to mark the depth. You can also use a drill press.
Step 19: Optional Wood Plug: Glue in the Pin
Step 20: Optional Wood Plug: Sand Down
Step 21: Optional Wood Plug: Stain, Polyurethane
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Step 22: Other Uses for Hooks: Coat Hook for Cubicle Prisoners
Step 23: Fridge Magnet
Step 24: Calendar Holder
Step 25: Gifts
Step 26: Hooks for Shelf Unit
Step 27: Key Holder
The branch is from France that I picked up near the Maginot Line.
Step 28: Other Stuff You Can Make From Tree Parts