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derekcohen last won the day on June 10

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About derekcohen

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    Perth, Australia
  • Woodworking Interests
    Building furniture predominantly with handtools

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  1. I work from each side towards the centre Working across the ends will lead to spelching. Regards from Perth Derek
  2. We left off with the drawer dividers a dry fit in the case ... And then this was pulled apart and the case glued up. After a clean up, the ends were looking a little tidier ... Now we've been through this together with the Jarrah coffee table, but for those who want to know how ... The ends are marked (with a washer) .. The aim is the remove the waste progressively to the lines ... This is quick to do with a low angle jack ... .. and finish with a block plane ... Now finish with sandpaper - 80/120/240 grit ... The completed case ... I spent a few hours today turning a few legs. Rather than show the prototypes, I am hoping that I may have enough time to complete them tomorrow - I have the afternoon off! - and then I will post more photos. Regards from Perth Derek
  3. The Harlequin side table will have 8 drawers. The drawer case sides and the central drawer blade are panels and run in dados or housings (depending on which side of the pond you live). Positioning of these dados is critical since any misalignment will affect the aesthetic. It goes without saying (but I shall) that the alignment also determines that the side panels will be square ... and drawers need to run against square sides. All this is done here with hand tools. Some of the finer points in getting it precise ... First of all, templates (or story sticks) are created to position the dados. There are two for each side panel: the second is 10mm longer than the first. Scoring each creates an exact 10mm dado. There is a series of templates to position all the dados. This ensures that the upper and the lower dado are position exactly the same distance from the reference wall ... A chisel wall is created for the marked outlines. This wall enables the fence to be lined up using a wide chisel ... The sidewalls are sawn with a azebiki saw. This have two curved sides, one with coarse rip teeth and the other with fine crosscut teeth. I begin with the fine teeth and use them to establish the kerf, and then switch to to the coarse teeth for speedier sawing. With a compass, I check that the kerf is parallel and to the desired width (10mm) ... The sawn side wall is now chopped away close to full depth ... This is done across the dados on one board at a time ... The waste in the centre of each dado is removed with a router plane. The dados are done at the same time to save have to reset the depth of cut (one stroke on dado #1, one on dado #2, and one on dado #3 ... then back to #1 ...) ... Keep an eye on the depth ... Fine tune the dado should theoretically be unnecessary if they were marked accurately. In practice, I find that there is usually some waste in the corners, or a slightly sloped wall. For this reason I run a side rebate plane (here a Veritas), the length of each wall. This is not held vertically, since that with remove some of the width. Instead it is run at an angle away from the side wall, as it it was undercutting the side wall ... The fit is now checked with an offcut from the side panel ... The side rebate plane can take a smidgeon off the sidewall if the fit is too tight. Some will argue that it is preferable to plane the panel instead. In this situation that is not advisable since the panel is to slide along the dado, and a tight point will impede all points of the panel. The carcase is Hard Maple, with Merbau as the secondary wood. Locally, Merbau is used for decking. It is cheap and hard, both qualities valued. But is a really brittle wood, and awful to work with. The number of splinters I have had ... and they are sharp and lodge deeply. Ugh! It can look like this ... ... and then a section breaks away ... At least it will be far inside the carcase and not be seen. A panel is made up for the interior dividers ... The pieces are fitted. Will the careful planning and neurotic execution pay off? I was holding my breath. This is a dry fit .... (sound of breathing again) Then I pulled it apart and glued up the carcase ... More after the coming weekend. Regards from Perth Derek
  4. Coop, by day I'm a shrink ... clinical psychologist specialising in working with children and their families. Woodworking is my therapy Just a different type of problem-solving. Regards from Perth Derek
  5. With the carcase completed, it is time to turn to the internal dividers for the drawers. I took the time first to plane the rebate for the rear panel. Knowing my spatial weakness of getting parts back-to-front and upside-down, I marked these when the carcase was a dry fit (and later briefly thought I had screwed this up!) ... One of the benefits of mitred corners is that the rebate can be planed across without fear of it showing ... The rebate is 6mm deep as the rear panel will be 5mm thick to bend it around the curved rear. The carcase is 20mm thick, and the rebate extends halfway into this. I was curious to see how rebating on a curve would turn out. No problem ... Here is the rear of the carcase with the rebate ... Moving to the stopped dados/housings ... the centre panel is solid rather than a frame. I decided that this would be less work, plus there will be a series of stopped dados to be made. The panel is 10mm thick. This was made first, that is, the dados were sized to fit the panel thickness. I made up a couple of templates. One was the height of the dado, and the other was the height of the dado plus the width of the dado. The inside of the carcase is marked on both sides using the same templates to ensure that they are exactly the same height from the base. The lines are deepened with a knife, and then a chisel wall is created to register a saw cut ... The end of the stopped dado is defined ... A Japanese azebiki was used along a guide to ensure it cut on the vertical ... Now that the sides are defined by the kerf, this could be deepened with a chisel (this is my favourite chisel - a 1" Kiyohisa. Sublime!) .. The waste is removed with a router plane ... Check that the side walls are square ... Completed side panels ... I was so confident that the dados were perfect that I dry fitted the carcase once more ... and then found that one dado was a smidgeon too tight for the test piece. It turned out that a small section of a side wall was not as square as I thought (probably the saw did not cut deeply enough at that spot). The best too to clear this is a side rebate plane. Set for a very light cut to clear the waste, not the dado width ... Perfect fit this time ... Time to fit the centre panel. This has been shaped to size, but will need a little fine tuning at a later time. Note that the rear section is secondary wood (Merbau) ... I had just enough time to slide the panel in. Nice tight fit. Not enough time to saw the rebates for the stopped dados. This will be done next time ... Regards from Perth Derek
  6. Hi Richard The plan is to round over the dovetails, so the "proud" will disappear. Sorry Regards from Perth Derek
  7. My wife requested a side table for the family room. This will be situated between two arm chairs, and replace the small table (which is too high and dominating) ... Not just a side table, but it also needed to house her needlework thingies. In other words, shallow drawers for cotton reels and sewing kit. I played around with several ideas, and eventually came up with a design that borrows a little from a piece I recently made. Lynndy liked the softness of the rounded dovetails and overall dimension of this coffee table I built some months back for a nephew ... The plan (looking down) would be to create a curved front and back, with round, splayed legs to the outside (an alternative is a straight, tapered round leg) ... In contrast to the Jarrah in that piece, the carcase will be built in Hard Maple, dovetailed and mitred at each corner. It will feature 8 drawers. All drawer fronts will curve as well. The reason for "Harlequin" in the title is that the drawers will be a mix of woods, as depicted in the elevation of the drawer section ... A harlequin design is often thought of as a diamond pattern, but does also include a rectangular checkerboard. Anyway, it's just a name, and I like giving my pieces a name At this stage I have chosen for the drawer fronts Black Walnut and Blue Gum. I may also add in Hard Maple. Always interested in your thoughts here. The Blue Gum is lighter than the Black Walnut and is a good foil against the Hard Maple … The legs will taper and curve from the carcase, attached with a loose mortice and tenon ... The sides and top were arranged so that the grain flowed continuously. The carcase is 20mm thick, 800mm long and 350 at the wide, centre point .. The initial dovetail plan was to keep the boards parallel and saw the curves later. It became apparent when joining the first set that this would not work ... .. there would be too much at the sides to mitre, and so I decided to shape the top and bottom panels at this stage rather than later. This was the first opportunity to use the modification I made to my Moxon vise (see article: It now enables the pin- and tail boards to be clamped together to aid in marking out (see earlier photo). In marking out for mitred corners, the side tails are not sawn out from the front ... ... the board is reversed, and the mitres are marked ... ... and sawn ... The reason I had wanted to retain square carcase sides was that it would make it easier to square the chisel guide for the mitres. I got around this by squaring them to the front of the carcase ... The pin board is seen here ... One of the difficulties in fitting this many tails and pins is that any slight errors are magnified. The fit below illustrates that the left side is too tight ... To deal with this, the tails were given a pencil scribbling ... Fitting the board together left this behind ... This process needed to be done once more, before the fit was satisfactory ... The four sides were dry fitted together, and the front and rear upper and lower panels planed to shape (this was close but not enough) … All is coplanar … Where we are up to at the end of today … One set of mitred corners … … and the other … Next up is building the internal dividers for the drawers. Regards from Perth Derek
  8. While working on the current build (I will post this later), I took a couple of minutes to make a very short video using a Knew Concepts fretsaw to remove the waste from pins. The purpose is to demonstrate how to efficient this process is, as compared with chopping the waste out. Note that the wood is 20mm thick Hard Maple (it is indeed very hard wood!). These are mitred through dovetails for the carcase of a side table with drawers. Regards from Perth Derek
  9. That is a Stanley #52 shooting board, with the Veritas Shooting Plane (in place of a Stanley #51 plane). You may wish to read this: and: Regards from Perth Derek
  10. I am about to begin my next build, and it has 8 drawers. As many of you know, I like making drawers ... complex drawers. And these ones are no exception.[ It got me thinking about the improvements I'd like to make to my Moxon vise. I have plans to make a new Moxon vise, using steel screws and iron wheels ala BenchCrafted, and all the parts are waiting in my workshop. But they will wait until this build is completed. And so I decided to modify the Moxon vise I have been using for the past 8 years. The Moxon vise is not simply about holding a board to saw dovetails. It is also about holding two boards together to transfer the tails to the pin board. In regard to the holding-to-transfer, David Barron designed a useful jig, a dovetail alignment board ... The issue I have with this is that I do not want another appliance to add to the ones I already have. But I like the idea, and wanted to incorporate it. To cut to the chase, here is my modified Moxon vise .... The first item is the ledge at the rear, which is covered in non-slip. The non-slip is for stair treads. The ledge is an idea taken from Joel Moskowitz (Tools for Working Wood), and is intended to use with a clamp when the tail board may need to be clamped. I have used clamps in the past, and so I know it is a good idea. Where this ledge differs is that it has a raised, hinged section, that places the tail board 16mm above the chop. This was also present on my previous version ... This allows the higher section to be folded out of the way when sawing ... The reason for this is that a coplanar top surface will lead to the chop being marked up by the knife when transferring the tails. This is the reason I recommend that the Moxon vise does not receive a table at the rear. It is why I prefer instead to raise the work piece up higher than the chop, out of harms way. The rear of the board is supported by the "I-beam" (which can be seen in the photos. The inside of the chop and the vise face are now covered by a material made from a composite of cork and rubber. BenchCrafted sell this as "crubber". I researched it on the 'Net and purchased a large piece on eBay. Note above that there are dados in the chop and the face. The dado in the face has a recessed rare earth magnet. I had an idea to make an integral, but removable alignment fence. This is a steel angle faced with hardwood ... It slots into the dado, and is held firmly ... And then is used in the same manner as an alignment board ... I hope this can be used by others. Regards from Perth Derek
  11. I think that it is more natural to push a saw with a pistol grip, and pull a saw with a straight handle. Pushing a straight handle (ala Gent Saw) is not ergonomic. Ditto pulling a pistol grip. These designs evolved for a reason. Regards from Perth Derek
  12. What my wife wants is frankly near-impossible. She wants a table she can use for storing needlework items. But it must also look like a casual side table. There is nothing exciting about a needlework table if you look at examples on the web. Generally a dumpy box. I find myself coming up with ideas to spice it up, such as the drawers, but I it feels like a collection of parts, and not an integrated whole. What is really needed is a box for her needlework, and a table for the family room.Regards from PerthDerek
  13. Stacked pivoting drawers (and no middle drawer) was my first model ...I moved on from this as it looked boring.mmmm .... I ran this past my wife. She prefers this version!Regards from PerthDerek
  14. New build. I would like to share the design to date. At this stage it is open to modifications. I am happy to hear your thoughts ... after all, that is the point of these builds - to create discussion.So, a needlework table .. now you know my secret passion JThe brief is that the needlework table is to replace the table in the family room, where it will do duel duty for my wife and be used as a side table for coffee cups, etc. I built the existing table 30 years ago as an extension for our dining room table, and it was used until recently in the entrance hall. Now I plan to recycle the legs into a country style dining room table for my son ...This table is too high to be used as a side table. The new table will reach the underside of its rails, about the same height as the armchair arm rests. It will be as wide as the existing table ...The planned needlework table. The top is 850mm wide. There is a 10mm overhang front and rear, and 100mm at each side. ...The elevation view looks a little plain at this stage, but it is a canvas, and the intention is to inlay some bright colours later on. The legs actually splay more than they appear here as they do so 45 degrees/diagonally rather than coplanar to the front and rear. The front of the table is bowed and has 3 drawers. Since this is a needlework table, where the contents need to be accessible. Two of the drawers will pivot from the outer sides. This will enable all drawers to be open at the same time.The carcase is to be Hard Maple, as will be the side drawers. The centre drawer will be the same wood as the table top, but I am not decided on this yet. Possibly figured Jarrah as it will be a good contrast to bright inlay. The underside of the drawers is coved to reduce the apparent height.The plan of the table - It looks like it needs "slimming down" in this picture, but it may be the angle at which the shot was taken ...Of note, the legs are round and tapered with the splay. Mortice-and-tenon joinery.Some specs of the construction ...Thoughts?Regards from PerthDerek
  15. I do not recommend planes for tenon cheeks. This includes skew block planes, rabbet block planes, shoulder planes and rebate planes. The only "plane" I do recommend is a large router plane. When paring a cheek, it is important that the shoulder is square the cheek (initially at least), and the cheek is parallel with the face of the stretcher. A router plane is great for keeping surfaces parallel. All other planes have difficulty maintain this (are at risk for over-cutting). What one really needs to do is pencil in the high spots, and then remove those. A chisel is easier to use to do this. A chisel is also easier to straighten up a shoulder. Shoulder planes are better tools for rebates, where that work with square. Regards from Perth Derek