GUEST POST – Brian Rae’s bike bar and iPhone stand – Fir – 2013

So why a guest post – cause I am so damn impressed with all the creations my brother Brian has put together over the last year.  Its been incredible to watch his woodworking acumen blossom from a sort of a casual amusement in my puttering and a general annoyance with the constant chatter of the table saw when we lived together, to that of a full-fledged builder of things.   These projects are Brian’s from conceptualization to actualization.  Brian and Laura have set-up a mini-homestead, raising chickens and children; assembling quilts and cabinets all within the confines of a metropolitan center.  And thus I present my first guest blog…

– Matt Rae

By Brian Rae and Brian Benson for Gladys Benson

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With my shop finally in full production this summer, and after Matt’s visit I pushed ahead on a few summer projects.

My friend Leah has just opened a bike shop, Gladys Bikes especially geared towards women here in Portland. She was trying to set up the shop to be warm and inviting, but cheap, so she asked me to help with some wood projects. We decided on three pieces; a shop counter for the register and two stools to hang out on, a stand for her ipad cash register and two shelving units for bike saddles.

Along with my co-builder, Leah’s brother Brian we used reclaimed fir from Salvage Works because of the price point and the beauty of the fir after it is planed. The counter was the biggest project being 6 ft by 4 ft. We planed fir 2 by 6s and laminated them together for the counter, then used old bar siding fit together for the sides to create the boxy look. The joinery was a mix of screws and table saw lap joints thus its as tough as can be.

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I really enjoyed the ipad stand because it allowed me to use the table saw at a 35 degree angle and my cut went into a cavity of sap in the wood. This created a really cool looking slot for the ipad. I then screwed a lazy susan stand on the bottom so it could be swiveled for customer signatures.


Finally the shelving units were two 6 ft 2 buy 12s. These were some big chucks of wood and really made by planer work hard. There were some significant splits in the wood that I glued together for added strength. We used a cherry stain and 8 layers of polyurethane on all of the projects to match the large roof beams and existing wood work.


The shop definitely has the Portland reclaimed wood look, in the space it really comes together especially when stocked with colourful bike gear. Check out the shop (map)  and the projects if you’re in PDX!

– Brian Rae


One thought on “GUEST POST – Brian Rae’s bike bar and iPhone stand – Fir – 2013

  1. Pingback: GUEST POST – Ander’s Toy Chest / Entry Bench – Fir – 2013 | raecreation

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