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Archive for March 2014

  • Make a Six Board Chest - Part 1

    Saturday 29th March 2014

    I'm very pleased to of made a start on this and publish my first project video. I know things still need work but hopefully you will see some improvements to video quality as I get more of them under my belt. I'm delighted with the clean nature of the European Redwood. The grade I'm using here is Un-Sorted, most of the off the shelf Redwood is Vth grade. I would hazard a guess that the 1" Un-Sorted I have is 1st grade. Although clean the board is not wide enough to meet the needs of this build so some panel glue ups are needed. I decided to do a "quick & dirty" tidy up of the boards so I could take a look at the grain leaving plenty of thickness for final preparation. I then then shot the edges and glued up the panels.

    Six Board Chest

    One of the benefits of doing this project is that it has already flagged up some more material I can add to the blog. For instance in the video I briefly work through the edge jointing. If you're familiar with this process then what I have shown should be just fine, however if new to the process I might of glossed over it all to quickly. With that in mind the next video will be an article on basic edge jointing. I thing showing how to glue up 3/4" stock would be really useful as it is one of the most common thicknesses of timber going.

    Six Board Chest

    Could I also say a quick thanks to Ken & Danny who have been kind enough to leave comments, your interaction is very much appreciated and it's nice to think you find my posts interesting. And also friends who have given helpful a constructive advice on the video on forums and facebook

  • Making Shavings

    Wednesday 26th March 2014

    Six Board Chest

    I was in two minds on what road I should take. Preparing the timber by machine or hand? I opted for hand as I wanted a bit of a workout! There is also that lovely noise of shavings from pine and the zesty smell that fills the air. My wooden jack is a dream for this job, the weight and almost friction free sole make for easy work. As the width of boards is only 225mm some edge gluing was required. To do this I jacked & tryed the wood to a decent level leaving plenty of meat for final stock prep. The edge glue is just that, long grain to long grain glue joint. No need for splines or tongues with the strength of modern adhesives.

    I sit here also editing the first video for this project. I feel it's much improved over my very early vids but it's still rather raw. One thing I'm not a fan of in videos is to much talking. My big problem is combining talking and doing to quicken the pace. I will do my best to improve that for video two. lighting is also something I'm playing with just now. Sadly video quality is not going to be much better for the foreseeable future. It is HD but with the quality of videos out there my offering does perhaps look a little raw. If you do have any feedback on the videos I would be pleased to hear it.

    Also, the motivation is a simple one, I'm enjoying the the challenge of sharing some of what I enjoy doing. I hope if any potential clients find these videos they will see we do try our best to deliver quality work and we care about what we do. Also if other people interested in woodworking get some enjoyment so much the better.

  • Cutting List

    Saturday 22nd March 2014

    Six Board Chest Cutting List

    I tweaked the sizes of the original chest to suit the location which in this case will be at the end of a single bed. I will be using whatever pine I have lying around. There are a few stray bits of Eastern White Pine hanging around that will be used up. As I mentioned before any utility species will be great for this project, laminated solid wood panels would also be a good option. As the wood will be easy working I am going to prepare it all by hand, that should lead us nicely into the first video.

  • Ironmongery

    Wednesday 19th March 2014

    Six Board Chest Escutcheon

    I like to get the ironmongery in at the start of a project. It gives you time to review the fittings to make sure it's going to work well with the piece. I have been put in positions by designers who have gone to great lengths to create an interesting concept only to find their chosen ironmongery just will not work or even worse nothing will work. In many cases it can be worthwhile working backward from the ironmongery. I purchased the ironmongery for this project from ABC Ironmongery. To be quite honest I think their website stinks, however they are really helpful, prices are good and the quality feels right for period style projects. Considering the piece I wanted to get an appropriate escutcheon, the chest on my pinterest board appears to of once had one. I went for the one shown above. Now if any period furniture buff's are reading this I know that these selections may no be historically correct, truth be told I don't really mind about that. As long as it looks good to me that's all I'm worried about.

    Six Board Chest Hinge

    On the hinge side of things I was unsure just what I would find. I thought I might need to improvise a Tee Hinge or just go with a butt hinge. It was pleasing to find box hinge shown above that looks like it will do the job just fine. I also grabbed a Chest Lock too, the same type I used on my tool chest. In addition I will be adding a child friendly lid stay to prevent crushed fingers.

    Six Board Chest Lock

  • Six Board Chest

    Sunday 16th March 2014

    Chest 1

    Something I've wanted to try for a while is a video project on my blog. Time and inspiration have been against me but with necessity, that mother of creation, stepping in to lend a hand I'm ready to give it a try. I need 3 simple robust pieces that will satisfy some storage needs at home. The six board chest seems to tick that box perfectly. Looking for inspiration I created a Pinterest board so I could scapbook ideas. One of the wonderful things about our modern age is access to information. I shudder to think how much time and effort would of been required to contrast ideas before the advent of the internet.

    It's clear to see if you look through the images that basically anything goes! I have focussed on nailed or pegged construction over dovetails for speed. Durability of this simple construction is a non issue, you only need to see the dates on some of these pieces to see how long lasting these basic chests are. If nails make you shudder then use screws & plugs, the same result in a different way from my perspective.

    Chest 2

    Three designs caught my eye, the one at the top was described as an oak six board coffer. A coffer is a strong box and normally has panelled reliefs. I have oak suitable for this project and the dark tones and tough timber will make it ideal for one of the chests. The one in the middle is a really pleasing piece. I actually prefer the side that has a broken off scroll! And finally the one below. I will use European Redwood for the painted piece. Euro Redwood is a widely available utility pine in the UK, Douglas Fir or Eastern White Pine would also be good options for the painted chests.

    Chest 3

    I'm not going to try a build these items using only period tools, I just want to get the job done. The tools I will use will be simple to underline the simple pieces.

  • Busy

    Friday 7th March 2014

    It's has been a really busy week in our workshop. Many orders out the door and plenty of new projects to start. This has left little spare time to write a blog post. I hope to get into the workshop tomorrow for some recreational woodworking and perhaps film a video if I have the time. So what can I offer the few visitors to this blog? Perhaps some inspiration from others. Here's a Blog worth following if you like proper, period hand tool woodworking. At the Eaton County Woodworker you will find the hugely talented Zach Dilinger. The quality of the projects and the methods used are always an eye opener. One project that always catches my eye is the William & Mary Spice Chest. At first glance it's impressive, once you clock the scale it's a whole new ball game. I would like to dream that my clumsy sausage fingers would be capable of such craft but the reality is it might be beyond me.

    Also on the list of things currently beyond me is carving. A video that has recently caught my eye is the carving of a ball and claw by Paul Pinchefsky (see below).

    Paul represents true skill. The video demonstrates incredible skill with simple tools. There is no crazy branding, no folk music (I like folk but does every woodworking video need it ? :-) ) just straight up skill. For those wanting to brush up on some skills or in the need of some tutoring Paul runs woodworking classes in Dorset for very reasonable rates. I might even make the time to pay him a visit and learn some new skills.

    And finally there's the good old Lost Art Press. Not that this crew need any promotion but the slick presentation, stimulating subjects and beautifully made furniture, workbenches and tool chests supporting the books draw you in time and time again. The most recent book on Campaign Furniture will I'm sure be a triumph and I look forward to purchasing a copy when it is available in the UK

  • Make a Dovetail Template

    Sunday 2nd March 2014

    This is nothing more than a blatant copy of the Dovetail Marker shown in "Modern Practical Joinery" by George Ellis pages 65 to 67. It's a perfect quick and easy template and is readily made from scrap hardwood. I hope the video shows accurately enough how to make one. After making it I had to take it for a quick test drive.

    Dovetail Box

    Not too bad although I feel the proportions need some tweaking. Next up, will be about how I cut my Dovetails.