Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Must Be Summer

It must be getting nicer outside when I can get on the back porch and do woodworking, or at least start marking up the legs...

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Furniture I Like

It's not the fact that this guy's stuff is so much better than anything I'm doing, it's the fact that he's only 21 years of age.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Lemons to Lemonade?

I was finally ready to take the next step with the hall table - I needed to make the mortises for the legs that would go down at around a 7 or 12 degree angle. I had done this before, so I didn't have any trepidation about it. Perhaps I should have. I neglected to turn the jig I was working with 180 degrees - instead I just moved it up. This would not have mattered if the bit in my router was perfectly centered (like, on a round base router), but on my Dewalt it's offset, so this caused the mortises to be offset as well. DOH!!! To add insult to injury the bit lacked the length to make it all the way through. I used a drill and chisels to work the rest of the way through, but with the amount of blowout I was getting on the backside, it looked as if it was attacked by a small beaver.

Router Setup - What would I do without carpet tape?

I had wanted to simply turn everything into firewood and cough it up to a learning experience, but I figured I would make the tenons offset to try to align the legs. That means I'll have to do some serious measuring and marking out with the legs to make sure I don't continue my losing streak.

Mortises - If only they were on the same line

I decided to use some cherry I had for the legs - I thought this was only 1" but it turned out to be 8/4, but of course had to go down to 6/4 as it was pretty warped after going through the planer. Here's hoping I'll mark them out right...

Legs - Freshly planed Oregon Cherry

More Progress on Pete Table

Pete came over to do some final sanding and we went ahead and edge glued the table top. It was too bad that even though the top came from a single long plank that I couldn't get very good grain matching. Basically, on one side there was some really bad checking and a split going in about 14", so it had to be cut off. That left just one 'good' side, so the edge will be pretty glaring, but at least it's the same species. Only the final finish will tell. All that's left is to do some final cross cutting and sanding of the top, put the top and base together and then put the finish on.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Progress on Pete Table

More progress on the side (?) table. The end use will be for computer and dj equipment, so does that make it a stand? A desk? I guess it's a side table.

Anyway, we squared up the mortises and then cut the tenons and sanded down the parts.

The usual imperfections on the tenon shoulders not being 100% square, and a little sanding down past where it should have been sanded, but shouldn't mar from the otherwise perfection of the piece.

Next up is the top and some final sanding and finish.

Getting tenons to fit just right with the shoulder plane:

Glued up with no place to go

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Lucky Number 7

Finally! Some luck with my jointer plane. To date, I have not had blazing success with my jointer plane, or with any of my planes for that matter (save the Lie Nielsen shoulder plane, but of course that worked pretty much right out of the box).

With the #7 Stanley jointer, I haven't done much to it besides taking some fo the rust off and making sure the blade was sharpened. However, I attempted to use it a couple of weeks ago with little luck.

Tonight I was trying to prepare the surface of the hall table. At the very least the machine marks from the rough cut needed to come off. I started out with the ROS @ 80 grit, but the going was slow, and of course very noisy. I thought - 'well, might as well try out a plane, I can't hurt anything' so I proceeded to try to use my #4, but it just wasn't working (as usual). I switched to the #7 and was having luck. It was quite the workout, and my benchtop build later this year will definitely be around 30" and not 36" as it is currently.

Back to the task at hand though - following the jointer action I even got in a little constructive card scraper action, and took out what few rough spots the jointer left with the ROS.

Overall a decent night in the shop.

#7 to the rescue!!!

Ahhh, if only I had a real workbenc h!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Table Legs

Progress achieved on the cherry table today. Planed down the 8/4 stock to 1-3/4" & cut into square legs. Cross cut to length and then spent some quality time marking for the mortises. Did the mortises on the router table. Man, does cherry like to burn. The smell - burnt popcorn. Not pleasing to the senses. Next up was tapering for that traditional shaker look . Nothing against shaker, I'm just not a big fan of it. Spent 15 min trying to put together a tapering jig a-la Norm (the one with the hinge on the end). Just didn't seem very accurate or efficient. Wound up throwing something much simpler together after consulting the series of pipes known as the Interweb. Simple, yet highly effective, and hopefully a bit safer than the first contraption.
Next up for this thing - squaring up the mortises, cutting the aprons, making the tenons, and edge gluing the top. Should be pretty smooth sailing her on out.
Tapering Jing - simple yet effective

4 tapered legs
Burn cherry burn! (You smell so good!)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Waiting For Wood to Dry & Odd Looking Finials

The walnut that came down last in the neighbor's yard last summer is slowly drying. To be exact, it's at 18% moisture content, according to the handy dandy meter. I suppose it needs to come down to 15%, which is what my "highly" dried lumber is at. I guess 15 is all I can get in a damp basement in the Pacific NW.

Also turned some weird looking finials for the outdoor deck last weekend. Turning is clearly not a strong suit at this point. Well, neither is anything else at this point...

2 Tables at Once

Hmmm, starting 2 tables at once. One should be easy, the other not so easy.
One's with cherry. The other with maple.
The cherry slab was 6 bucks, the maple 10 bucks. We're talking high dollar wood here.