One For The Candy Junkies

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a candy junkie. Unfortunately this has also been passed onto my first born child. One thing I’ve seen a lot of floating around the internet is a candy dispenser using a mason jar. I thought this would be a good in between project and I had some cool wood sitting around that was given to me by a fellow woodworker I met at the community centre I go to. The wood I chose to use was Wenge. To follow in a similar vein of Doctor Emmet Brown, if you’re going to build something, why not build it with style! This is the first time I’ve ever used Wenge before and honestly if it wasn’t given to me, I wouldn’t have purchased it for this project. It’s an incredibly expensive African hardwood and is expensive due to the fact that it’s almost an endangered species. The pieces I got were really small as they were off-cuts from a bed this guy was making.

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First thing I needed to do was glue up a couple pieces to make the top and bottom of it. I used biscuits to hold them in place during the glue up. Because I’ll be drilling directly through the center, I realized that the biscuit would show but I wasn’t all that concerned because it was going to be covered in candy.

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The next task was taking some 1 3/4 maple and glued it together to make the base of the piece.

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Here is the piece getting all glued up. This was tough to keep glued up exactly in place where I needed it to be. I just cleaned it up on the belt sander. It didn’t need to be perfectly dimensioned as long as the tops and bottoms were flat which they were

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The next task was routing out a piece right down the center of the maple so that the dispenser arm could slide through it. The slider piece was another perfect off cut I got from the guy. I just needed to clean up the one side and I absolutely love the look of the grain in this piece. Believe it or not, that is exactly the same wood.

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I missed out on a couple pictures here but what I did was put the piece in my lathe and carved out a little knob at the end of it that you use to pull out to dispense the candy. I also drilled out a small relief and then angled the back so the candy could fall into place and not get stuck. This was pretty much the last piece and then everything was glued up.

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The last part was putting epoxy on the underside of the mason jar lid and it’s ready to go.

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And here it is in action. I used a food-safe finish to bring out a bit more of the grain of the wood. It’s just a mineral oil which would be something you use on a cutting board. I wish I took a picture of my son about 10 minutes after making this because he had chocolate over every inch of his face. Overall a really easy project but done with some really cool wood, something I would love to use in the future on a bigger project.

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