Two of my favorite things
I think it was only a matter of time before I figured out how to make a beer flight. For many years now, I have been a huge craft beer fan with many thanks to my good friend (and beer sensei) Tim Anderson.
We have spent much time together at breweries, both in our respective beer meccas- Southern California for him and Western NC for me, as well as in Eastern NC where we spent many years together as Marines. Add in my time spent learning the craft of woodworking and you get the inevitable combination of the two.
To be honest, this wasn’t the most difficult thing I've crafted. The shape used is pretty standard for beer flights. It looks like a paddle and includes four holes filled with 5 ounce tasters known as a Barbary beer taster. I arranged the holes on the board in a way to allow for my brand in the middle (when I make them available for order, this spot could include a custom logo). And with practice, I am definitely getting better at cutting curves on the bandsaw which made shaping the board easy. The key is being comfortable with making many smaller cuts along your curve and then using your sander to smooth the edges as necessary.
Once the basic shape was complete, I started work on the handle. Most boards I saw online had handles that were flat like the board itself. I am pretty proud that my handle has some shape to it and feels really good in the hand.
All I did was round over each side of the handle on the router table and then hand-sanded the curved parts until it took the shape I wanted. It turned out beautiful. I think the handles sets mine apart from others.
Oddly, the most difficult part was cutting the holes. I am fortunate to have a drill press. It took some math to determine best hole placement to ensure they were centered, spaced so that the glasses didn’t clink together, AND left enough space for my brand in the middle. I spent a lot of time before mounting the 2 inch forstner bit in the chuck and starting to drill. That process also took some time. I learned that I had to drop my drill speed to its lowest setting and really take my time. I guess it’s rare for “take your time” to be bad advice in woodworking, no matter what you are doing.
The end product is amazing. I used a beautiful piece of cherry and finished with 80-320 and Walrus Oil. This initial board will be used for a 1k giveaway on Instagram. I hope to include this and possibly some other shapes on my website in the near future.