Intro: Hammer and Sickle Wall Plaque
One of my friends is slightly obsessed with Soviet history, so she asked me to make her this plaque to hang in her apartment.
The plaque is approximately 18" in diameter, and hangs from a wall screw.
Costs about $10 in terms of primer, paint, and assorted wood, and the installation is a cinch.
Step 1: Find a Template
To find a good pattern, I just Googled "hammer and sickle," and found this. Then I just scaled and printed it out in Word. Pretty straightforward I'd say.
Step 2: Trace It Out
I used a piece 1/2" thick plywood I found in my shop. I cut out the paper template, taped it to the wood, and traced it with a sharpie.
I did the same thing for the star, which isn't a vital part of the plaque, but still an aesthetic add-on.
Step 3: Cut It Out
Best tool for this is a jig saw. Scroll saw could work, but the piece is a bit too big.
I just clamped it down and cut around carefully.
Step 4: Sand It Down.
I used my power sander for the surfaces (no more than 120 grit), and mixed-and-matched filing and sanding (with sandpaper sheets) by hand.
The wood had a really ugly color before, and sanding made the grain patterns stand out really well.
Step 5: Make the Hanging Attachment
I used a 3/4" thick piece of hardwood to make the hanger (1"x1.5" wide), and then glued and clamped it directly to the back of the plaque, approximately 2/3 of the way up, allowing the center of gravity of the whole body to fall a few inches under the hanger attachment.
To make the hanger, I drilled a hole slightly larger than the hanging screw. Then I used a special router bit that makes hanging slots to make the slot that the screw slides into.
So that the plaque wouldn't wobble on the screw, I stabilized it with the dowel shown below. I used a 1/4" dowel, so I drilled a shallow 1/4" hole down the line of the center of gravity, and glued/inserted the dowel so that only 3/4" would stick out.
Step 6: Paint It
I used generic spray primer and yellow spray paint (Home Depot), two layers each, dry time as per directions.
Because my shop has no ventilation, I spread out a small tarp and painted the plaque and the star outside.
Now, after finishing, I contemplated attaching the star to the body using Plexiglas, but that would look fake and tacky. The star can stand on it own in the angle between the hammer and sickle, but again, its optional. (The original symbol actually doesn't have the star in it, but its a nice Soviet touch).
Since the plaque is pretty light, I just drilled a hole in my friend's plaster wall, inserted a plastic screw anchor, screwed in the screw, and hung it. Simple installation.