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Archive for the ‘Woodworking Projects’ Category

Morley Bar Stool Lumber

January 21, 2023 Leave a comment

After downloading plans from the Wood Whisperer Guild I thought hard about the lumber in my shop what wood I would prefer to work with and what my ‘customers’ would like. There is some very nice Walnut that I have for another project that I looked at very seriously but the dimensions did not lend themselves well and the amount of waste a little concerning.

I decided to use maple for the seat and cherry for the structure. Since I didn’t consult my clients they readily agreed. Hopefully the maple and cherry will work well together. The lumber yard I use here in San Antonio has worked out well, they have a unique system, commented on a few months ago. I was very surprised at the cost of the Cherry, pleasantly surprised! Once it was in the shop I didn’t waste time cutting it into smaller pieces. My shop works fine but the 10’ lengths of lumber are quite a tripping hazard.

Starting with the Maple I crosscut it to lengths and began milling it into blanks for milling and shaping. I admit that the virus certainly took a little bit of my breath away but it felt very good to cut these by hand and I couldn’t have asked for a better saw. If you haven’t visited Bad Axe Saws lately they appear to be doing well and as they move through a change in ownership Mark Harrell is still next door and providing teaching and saw sharpening through his new company sawsharp. You can find him on instagram at SawSharp6. BTW I recommend his saws because of the excellent quality and service he has provided me over the years and have no financial or other relationship with or Bad Axe Toolworks.

The design of the seats will require a couple of jigs and the bandsaw as I move into the power tools.

Cherry Side Table Joinery

October 22, 2022 Leave a comment

The title mentions joinery, on this page I have now mentioned joinery three times. The pictures lead you to think that perhaps there will be many joinery photographs, however someone was more focused on cutting the joints than photographing them.

There is little new woodworking on this project. It is similar to the prior Walnut side table and the through tenons require precise measurement and chisel work. These joints were mostly cut by hand, after all cherry is a pleasure to work and the rhythmic chopping is the calm after a storm.

A couple of problems occurred while make the joints and I think this picture shows them all. The first occurred while dry fitting the saddle joint in the upper cross pieces. Although the joint fit fine the small amount of pressure when asssembling resulted in a crack along the grain. The upper right of the photograph shows this piece clamped. The second thing to notice is the organized chaos. While glueing the broken joint, I worked on several pieces to save time. What did not reveal itself until glue up was that I had planed all the pieces removing many of the marking and numbers. This suddenly revealed itself in the glue up when the LAST PIECE did not fit well!

The result of this misfit was a minor wobble when the table was glued together. This was easy to fix by planing the bottom of one leg. I sharpened up the #4 and right before the first swipe realized that a little care may save me from breaking a corner. I carefully clamped a couple of pieces of scrap to the back end and took about three strokes and the wobble was gone.

The only thing left was to screw the top and bottom together and add a couple of coats of Shellac.

Several lessons from this piece: Repeating a project provides the chance to modify and change certain aspects. In this case the edge of the top was chamfered and the joints varied. More attention to wood grain adds to the appeal. Finishing is still a problem, but by using a rag rather then a brush it was much improved. Number your parts where you won’t remove the marks. High Angle frogs make a difference.

Categories: Cherry Side Table

Cherry Side Table Top

October 8, 2022 1 comment

Wanting to get the glue up of the top out of the way and move onto the joinery, I spent quite a bit of time flipping boards and matching grain. When the finish goes on we will see how it looks.

Here’s a link to my method for dimensioning stock, dimensioning without a jointer. Jointing the edges, I used my #7 plane which was really overkill. the bed length really helps to create flat edges but I could have accomplished the task with a #5 or #4. I just happen to like the #7.

In the last few projects I could have done a better job gluing the top. Aligning all of the boards has been a challenge which creates more work to prepare the top after glue up. I took a little more time and care to ensure alignment when clamping and there was definitely improvement. I suppose that I could use biscuits or dowels to help but I’ve not done that in over 10 years. I think it is something that with increased awareness will improve.

When the clamps were removed, there was a small amount of misalignment but much improved. I used two planes to smooth the top and with the tight reversing grain I was glad to have the Lie Nielsen #4 with a high angled frog. I’ll write a separate blog about why I have this plane in the near future.

Categories: Cherry Side Table

Another Side Table

September 30, 2022 Leave a comment

There’s a little cherry left over and I think it will be enough to make another round side table. So I grabbed the plans which I didn’t follow last time and won’t follow this time and gathered up the lumber.

Then I stopped everything because I had not sharpened my planes after the prior project and went out to play ball with my daughter’s dog, my friend Tim wonders why he never sees any finished projects?

Houston – 2 years old.

Flattening and dimensioning the lumber did not take long and I spent some time looking at the previous tables to see if there were elements to change or add. The Walnut table I made a few months ago had several nice elements and the only thing I may consider is do I want to place a lower shelf on the table. I can do this at the end of the project so will probably consider it for a while.

Checking a couple of measurements from the prior table and its off to work or the grass needs to be cut.

Categories: Cherry Side Table

Walnut Side Table – Finishing the Top

May 1, 2022 Leave a comment

The Walnut side table has been a very enjoyable project. It was small had fun joints and is very useful. The top was screeed to the legs using oversized holes and brass screws, and once complete a final coat of finish was added.

A couple of features that add character were the use of the bridal joints and through tennons along with chamfering the top. I am particularly happy with the chamfer and how it lightened the top by giving it a thinner profile.

Thanks for following along, time for a new project!

Categories: Walnut Side table

Walnut Side Table – Top Cracks

April 24, 2022 4 comments

After gluing up the Table Top, rough sawing the circular outline, routing and then chamfering I guess the glue joint on the table decided it had enough.It’s a clean break most of the way down the glue line so I just added a little more glue worked it into the joint and clamped it up. Not a bad problem to solve!

Categories: Walnut Side table

Walnut Side Table – Top

April 16, 2022 Leave a comment

Looking through various books and images I’ve been considering the impact of changing the edges of the table top. When I made the Arts and Craft Side table a few years ago the top was approximately 7/8” thick and I wonder about the impact of a different edge. Many authors discuss “lightening” the look of the top with chamfers.

Before we work on the edges let’s get the top built. Using the smaller jointing sled mentioned in one of my previous posts I Milled up stock for the top and glued them together.

Next I planed the top flat (one day I’ll do a better job in the glue up and have less work to do). Reviewing my notes from the Arts and Craft Side table it was obvious that I had a heck of a time with the circular top. There’s several ways that I could tackle it, Bandsaw, router, hand saw so I spent a little time researching alternatives and came to the conclusion that I will trim with my bandsaw and using my router to fine tune the circle. Using a Fine woodworking article a jig was made and the top trimmed into a circle. If you are a Fine Woodworking Member or have access to a library here’s the article: 4 Jigs for a Fixed Base, September-October 2014.

I trimmed the circle first with a flush cutting bit and then I followed along with a chamfer pit. The Chamfer posed a minor problem since the hole was smaller than the router bit. I had to make a quick base to take care of the problem.

I’ll write more details on the jig and how I attached it in another article.

Categories: Walnut Side table

Walnut Side Table – Rounded Tenons

April 7, 2022 1 comment

Several years ago I had the opportunity to take the 9 day foundations class from Paul Sellers. It was an incredible experience and one that I doubt will be available in the future. Paul has moved onto Woodworking Masterclasses and Common Woodwork as a platform to reach a larger audience. One of the projects in this class involved through tenons and a lesson in the versatility of the hand plane. If you have never tried rounding over end grain, pull out a board, sharpen up your plane and give it a go.

Working end grain requires a sharp blade. A few minutes on the diamond plates and the plane was ready to go. Working across the tenon I take small slices of wood working up and down the tenon until its rounded over. Watch for tear out on the ends although they will later be chamfered with a chisel. When the tenon looks balance a file or sandpaper can be used to smooth out the finished product.

The final act of the rounded tenon is chamfering the ends. This removes any tear out and gives a nice finished look. Using a chisel it only took a couple of hits with a mallet and they are complete. And if you chip out by the tenon a little superglue may just handle the problem.

Walnut Side Table – Lumber

March 22, 2022 Leave a comment

There are always a few additional boards left over when completing a project, these boards could sit on a rack for years collecting dust. Perhaps a small table could put them to use?

Several years ago I gathered up various pieces of White Oak from a coffee table build and built a round table that has been exactly what was needed in our living room. With a few modifications I’ll do the same with the Walnut. Legs first then moving on to the other parts of the table.

Categories: Walnut Side table

Walnut coffee Table – Top

January 26, 2022 Leave a comment

I have heard many people discuss whether to make the top first or last. I don’t see any reason to do one over the other. For this project the top was done last. Milling was typical slog of passing boards through the jointer followed by hand planing the edges and running the opposite edge through the table saw.

I used two planes to work the edges. Stanley #4 to rough the edges followed by a #7. I needed the longer plane due to the 48” length of the boards.

With the edges jointed and parallel I glued up the top and let it sit overnight. The next day was spent planing and smoothing. I did notice a couple of knots which will need to be filled.

Trimming the edges was done on the Tablesaw and hand planed with a very sharp plane. I also noticed a couple of Knots that needed to be filled, so as you read I am also reading about how to use Epoxy.

Categories: Walnut Coffee Table