Sunday, 20 January 2019

Dovetailing Weekend Finished


An excellent weekend of dovetailing is over with a very good group. Even though two of them had never cut dovetails before, they had the practice joint and the alignment board done in the first day. They went on to make a dovetailed box with Nick managing to complete his mitred lining and tilt top lid. I'm looking forward to the next course in April.

Wednesday, 9 January 2019

Lovely Sunburst Table in Brown Oak


Andy sent me these pictures of a fine sunburst table made from some lovely quarter sawn brown oak purchased at Yandles. For dimensional stability he cut veneers from the oak boards on the band saw using the best figure for the top and balanced it with veneer underneath. Cutting your own veneer allows thicker cuts than the very thin 0.6 mm commercial veneers, these were 2mm thick allowing the top to be treated and finished as if it were solid wood.
Andy's next project is a matching sideboard.

Monday, 7 January 2019

Collectors Cabinet in F&C Magazine


In the latest issue of Furniture and Cabinetmaking magazine is a nice article on my collectors cabinet.
Reading the article it doesn't seem too much work but in practice 132 dovetails and 11 piston fit drawers took some time to finish.




Thursday, 27 December 2018

Huge Wooden Screws For Sale

I've been contacted by someone in the USA who has, what they claim to be, the largest collection of wooden wine press screws, 250 in all. These look to be about 6' tall and I can see some left handed threads in there, all hand cut. They are ideally looking for someone to acquire the whole collection, so if anyone is interested I can put them in touch.

Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Rolling Tool Chest


I wish all of you a happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year!
These pictures sent in by Robert from Toronto are of a fine tool chest based upon a design by Michael Pekovich. The case is ash with beech edging and tool holders, olive wood for the small drawers and African blackwood handles. It's a Christmas present for his lucky son (tools not included!)

Thursday, 20 December 2018

Latest Project, Part One


I've designed a small single drawer chest for a three day course next year. I'm going through the making process to make sure the project is challenging, whilst still being able to be completed within three days. Above are the two book matched olive ash boards which have been band sawn and allowed to settle.

Shooting the edges, note the marks 'up' and 'down' referring to the way each board is planed to ensure a nice flat result.

With accurate planing, the only clamps needed are stretched masking tape. This is much better than using ordinary clamps which could easily warp the thin board.


With the parts for the carcass planed and cut square it was time to introduce a minute taper to the carcass by planing the ends of the top and rail with fine stop shavings. The taper will be helpful in achieving a piston fit drawer which is the goal of this project.


Verifying the taper shows that the front of the cabinet will be 0.15 mm narrower than the rear.


Using a template for marking out the 17 dovetails on the top corners. There are no end pins and an extra wide gap on one end was left for shaping the curved front which will be done later.


Here's my dovetailing kit, you'll notice the Optivisor loupe (with a no3 lens) which is invaluable for working on a small scale.

Here's the carcass glued up showing the through wedged tenons for the rail. These were quite time consuming and I think these may need to be omitted for the course.


The curve for the front was marked out and rough cut on the band saw before being refined on a disc sander. The table was set dead square to ensure an even finish and a light touch was needed, disc sanders can remove material fast!
The drawer parts were then all shot into their respective openings before cutting the half blind dovetails. The extra thick lap will be cut down to a nice thin one when the drawer is curved to match the carcass.

Monday, 26 November 2018

Alan Peters Sideboard Refurbishment Complete



At last the work on the Alan Peters sideboard is finished. The doors now close, the drawers slide smoothly, the rear leg has been repaired, the dents have been steamed out, the scratches removed and the whole thing refinished with five coats of Skelton Peacock Oil.


The recycled Cuban mahogany came up really nicely with the initial deep red colour settling down to a lovely rich red brown.


When it first came in the Honduran mahogany was the same faded colour as the Cuban mahogany and it is great to see the subtle contrast which would have been apparent when new. The sideboard will be going to auction next year, I'll update with progress on this.