• Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


derekcohen last won the day on July 1

derekcohen had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

965 Excellent


About derekcohen

  • Rank
    Journeyman Poster

Contact Methods

  • Website URL

Profile Information

  • Location
    Perth, Australia
  • Woodworking Interests
    Building furniture predominantly with handtools

Recent Profile Visitors

3618 profile views
  1. The legs I had meant to mention the way I dealt with the dowels, which were the original joinery for the legs, but there was not the opportunity. Here are the legs, and you can see the ugly dowels. What I did was to turn them upside down, and remove the dowelled section in the taper cut ... First, the legs were morticed .. I built a simple fixture for my sliding table saw ... The nail holes were filled with coloured epoxy, which disappeared after the finish was applied ... And then smoothed ... I was asked (when I posted this photo elsewhere) why I planed into the grain. The answer is ‘because I can with a closed chipbreaker’ No, the real answer is because it was easier to keep track of the mark demarcating the flat section. Regards from Perth Derek
  2. I did consider a drawer stop, but it was difficult to do with the drawer design. The drawer will hold a few light objects, such as keys, and I was not concerned about weight stressing it. Regards from Perth Derek
  3. There are four parts to the drawer build: the drawer size and design, the drawer case, fitting the drawer case, and the drawer. Part 1 described the drawer size and design, and the apron of the drawer case. Part 2 describes the rest. We ended Part 1 here. That is the apron and opening to the drawer case .. This is where the build ended ... The drawer case and its fitting I scratched my head for a week how to do this. How to get the case to support drawer blades. I did not want a heavy, complicated arrangement, one which ran the danger of protruding below the table and might be seen at a distance. It needed to be lean and mean. To be elegant. A design to be appreciated by myself and you. This is what I came up with .. The case sides were grooved 3mm (1/8") ... .. and matched with a rebated section which would form the 6mm (~1/4") thick drawer blade ... The thickness of each blade is the same as the depth of the lip on the drawer front (which doubles as a drawer pull). This depth is significant. The reason for the rebate arrangement is to get the blade as low as possible on the case side. Recall that the front of the blade acts as a drawer stop as well, and must be coplanar with the lower edge of the drawer lip. The side/blades are fitted to the rear of the apron with a mortice-and-tenon joint ... This was definitely a tricky joint to do and it needed to be precisely positioned so that the entry lined up with the sides ... precisely! Here is what it would look like with the drawer front inserted ... To aid with alignment, I made a MDF pattern ... Here's the fun bit - aligning the case with the front and rear aprons, to mark out the rear mortices ... The pattern is inserted and a straight edge is attached to the front apron to prevent flexing ... A lot of repeat measurements are taken on the rear apron before I am satisfied it is square and equal front-and-back. This is the result ... By-the-way, note the biscuit joiner-made slots for attaching the table top. The drawer The drawer build was fairly straight forward. The usual half-blind fronts and through dovetail rears. Transferring tails to pins on the Moxon ... The sides were grooved rather than using slips. This was to save the extra 3mm height needed for the slips (saving as much height as possible for inside the drawer). 3mm grooves .. Matching groove in the drawer front ... Below is the stage of glueing up the drawer carcase. You know that it is all coplanar and square (essential for a piston fit) when the dovetail at each end just drop neatly into the matching sockets ... The 6mm thick drawer bottom receives a 3mm rebate. This was made with a moving fillester, and then fine-tuned with a shoulder plane ... The drawer fits well and needs minimal tuning. Got to use the newly-made drawer-planing fixture ... Two items added: a very fine chamfer to the top of the drawer front, to prevent binding when the drawer is closed. And a stretcher across the tops of the drawer sides, prevent the drawer tipping ... This aids in achieving near-full extension ... The end Regards from Perth Derek
  4. My reasoning was this: I could cut with a Japanese saw, which leaves a fine surface and a fine kerf. But I am still going to have to shoot the ends to ensure that they are perfectly square to one another - that is, both sides. That can add up to a wider kerf. So, go for the table saw, which will leave a fine and square cut with a predictable cut/kerf. Damned if you do and damned if you don't. Regards from Perth Derek
  5. Gee-dub I am curious whether you plan to use that length board, or will cut it up? If cut it up, why not do so before jointing? Regards from Perth Derek
  6. The drawer - part 1 It was my intention from the outset to hide the drawer as best as possible. This required that the drawer not have a pull or handle visible on the outside. To achieve this end, the drawer would need to be opened from the underside. Issue: Opening from the underside meant that the drawer would need to rest in a case which was open from below. Without a case bottom (i.e. drawer blades) on which the drawer could rest, the common method for a drawer would be a form of side hang. There are two methods for a side hung drawer that I know of, and I dislike both of them intensely! Partly because they require thick drawer sides, which lack aesthetic appeal for me. The first is a wooden slide (ugh!) which requires grooving the outside of the drawer sides ... The second method involves a metal slide (double ugh!!), which is ugly and belongs in a kitchen ... In the end I decided that I could build a drawer case with drawer blades open at the front. I have not seen anything like this before, but I live a sheltered life. I doubt this is original ... just re-inventing the wheel. There are four parts to the drawer build: the drawer size and design, the drawer case, fitting the drawer case, and the drawer. The drawer size and design The drawer is 230mm (9") wide and 280mm (11") deep. The width represents one third of the length of the apron. This works well since the depth of the drawer needs to be greater than the width to avoid racking. Racking would not be an issue if there were side slides (ugh!), but we are avoiding those thingies. Note the lip on the underside of the drawer front ... See the drawer lining up with the apron ... going ... going .. ... gone ... That lip is the drawer pull, and it doubles as the drawer stop. The drawer case Let's make the face of the drawer case. The original aprons were 100mm high. The new apron was to be 65mm, which was the height I calculated (with a life size drawing on a MDF sheet). The 65mm height included the drawer front, which would be 45mm high. That would leave a 20mm rail above the drawer. The first step here is to rip away 45mm from the original apron ... These two sections are jointed so that they may be perfectly flush once glued back together, and no join evident. The jointing was done on my large shooting board ... The drawer front is marked off - with a knife, not a pencil - from the centre of the 45mm wide board ... And then the drawer front is crosscut on the table saw. The cut area is covered in blue tape to minimise spelching ... We are now left with four sections - the wide top, the two lower side sections, and the middle drawer front. The sections are glued back (taking care not to glue the drawer front back!) ... Once the glue has dried, plane the board flat ... Did you see it before? Now the board is ripped down to 65mm, leaving a 20mm rail above the drawer front. Here you can see the front and rear aprons. They have also been cut to length, given a tenon at each end. The apron tenons are angled 3 degrees for the splayed legs ... Part 2 will complete the drawer. Regards from Perth Derek
  7. Finishes ... Somehow this area was forgotten, and of course it is important. All surfaces were hand planed, and then finished in de-waxed Ubeaut Hard Shellac. This concentrated and thinned with denatured alcohol/methylated spirits. This finish allows the figure to come through and, unlike an oil, does not darken the already dark Jarrah (which is what I wanted to avoid). The top was, in addition, sanded with a ROS to 400 grit. Jarrah is an open-grain timber and the sanded Shellac doubled as a grain-filler, leaving a smoothed surface. The next step was to rub in (and off) a water-based poly, from General Finishes, which does not darken or yellow with age. I rub thin coats on with microfibre cloths and then denib with 400 grit grey mesh ... The final step is to wax (the top) with Howards Wax-N-Feed, which is a mix of beeswax and carnauba wax. This produces a very soft, warm and natural finish. Regards from Perth Derek
  8. I have a couple of these Elu routers. In Oz and the UK the are the model MOS177e. The router is nearly identical (except for the dust insert) to the DeWalt DW656. It is likely that you can access spares that way. Regards from Perth Derek
  9. Unless one is building something very long or very tall, where a single stretcher section is required .... and I believe that this is extremely rare ... then a shorter jointer is more likely to be the appropriate machine. Fact: wood moves, and twists and cups, especially through the drying process. Flattening long sections will require the removal of more wood than flattening short sections. Solution: always cut the wood into the sections to use, and then flatten them. Do not attempt to flatten the full length of the rough cut stock. A benchtop jointer would work well for someone building small pieces. Regards from Perth Derek
  10. Not quite 4 weeks ago, a good friend, Rita, brought along an entrance hall table she wanted me to fit a drawer into ... (Note that these photos were taken in my entrance hall, not Rita's). It was really a boring ... okay, ugly table. I thought that the proportions were completely ugh, and the legs reminded me of detention in a classroom. The table had been a kerbside salvage by her late husband, a close friend of mine, and a very good woodworker in his own right. It had been used as a work table. Rita had just moved into a new home, and the table was used because the width of the top fitted an alcove in the entrance hall. I said to Rita that I would re-build the table. "But I must have a drawer", Rita emphasised. The wood was good Jarrah. The first step was to pull it apart. This was not so easy as simply unscrewing the clips for the top ... Some evil tablemaker had used a nail gun to attach the corner blocks. Pulling them out left holes in the legs. The legs were attached with dowels. I would never have guessed as the construction was very strong. Pulling them away caused some of the wood to tear along with it. No way to remove them other than saw the ends away. Deconstructed ... Let's begin again .. I thought that I would do something different with this write-up. Turn it around and start with the finished piece. That's right ... the table rebuild is complete. This will provide a picture of the end result, and we can then look at how certain parts were built. This way around might create a better understanding of where the build was going, and how it got there. In particular, the drawer. The drawer is a little beauty. I did scratch my head over the construction. No doubt it has been done before, but I could not find any pictures of another like it. I am sure there will be interest in the design. I am chuffed with the efficiency of it. More on this in the next article. For now, here is the completed table. The legs have been brought inward, tapered, and a 3 degree splay added to the sides. The top retained its width (I was threatened with death, or worse, if it was shortened) but was made shallower. A slight camber was added front-and-back to soften the outline ... The apron was also made shallower. The original was 100mm (4") high. It is now 65mm (2 1/2") high. Oy .. where's the drawer gone?! I could have sworn it was there yesterday. Aah ... there it is ... This is the drawer case ... With drawer inserted - you need to get close up to see the joins .. It opens with a pull under the drawer .. The drawer is shallow, of course, it is just for house keys and the odd remote control. It is just 45mm (1 3/4") high on the outside and 26mm (1") deep inside. The full dimensions are 230mm (9") wide and 280mm (11") deep ... The sides are 7mm thick. The drawer front is 18mm (roughly 3/4"). To maximise the internal height, the drawer bottom was attached with a groove into the drawer sides rather than using slips. Slips would have used a precious extra 3mm (1/8"). So they 6mm (1/4") drawer bottom has a 3mm rebate, fitting a 3mm groove. The sides and bottom are quartersawn Tasmanian Oak, which is very stable and tough. One screw at the rear, with an expansion slot, to hold it firmly. A nice, tight drawer ... It slides in-and-out smoothly. I love that it disappears and is hidden. More on the construction next time, but feel free to ask questions. Regards from Perth Derek
  11. A stand is not going to work for thicknessing (planing). For the simple reason that the height would need to be constantly adjusted as the cut progresses. If the in- and out feed support is not coplanar, there will be extra pressure on the rollers, leading to snipe. There are two options: the first, and best, is to add the extensions offered by Hammer. The second is to secure a long, stiff (and wide enough) board through the thicknesser for the work piece to run along. Regards from Perth Derek
  12. Yeah .. come on over. Regards from Perth Derek
  13. There were a number of photos and comments I might have added, but thought that I had probably said too much already. One of the photos omitted was with clamps. I decided against the T-track style clamps here (as some may know, I have used them elsewhere) as they are too directional, which limits their range of cover. The side fence does not just travel parallel to the runway, but can be angled so, for example, one can hold an out-of-square board or deliberately plane a taper. As the end of the board will not sit flush against the far fence, clamps are helpful to prevent movement (this is unnecessary when the side fence is parallel). The clamps can be moved along the side fence, as needed. That is the reason for the many holes you see ... Regards from Perth Derek
  14. The hall table for my niece was completed and delivered, but the wedding was postponed owing to Covid-19. Australia locked down early, and we have suffered less than other countries. I realised early on that I would have to change the way I ran my psychology practice, and began to research and gear up for Telehealth using video. I found this quite stressful as I intensely dislike using the telephone (and cannot avoid doing so through the day), fearing that video may have the same impersonal feel. It has been reassuring that it has turned out quite a decent experience, and it will usher in changes in the future for consultations. Distance and mobility may become barriers of the past. Still, the past 6 weeks have been exhausting. Working in front of a screen is intense. I've probably put in 15 hour days owing to the extra admin needed. What has this got to do with woodworking? Well, I really haven't made it into the workshop until about two weekends ago. It is a refuge from the stresses of the world, and I can chill out just tinkering. I managed to tune up all my machines. Do you know that bicycle lights are the best lights for drill presses and bandsaws? Got a couple of them. Attached a spare Wixey to the bandsaw. Love it! Made a rack for router bits. This is sounding desperate. My energy levels are too low to tackle the painting Lynndy wants me to do. I really just want to push a plane around. Blame Rod Cosman. He has a daily video on building drawers. If you can ignore the constant sales pitches, Rob is one of the good guys, and there is always something to pick up. I would watch one episode after the last patient was done, with a coffee and my feet up. <sigh> Well, Rob was using this large shooting board. He likes to shoot with a #5 1/2. The board was nothing special, but it reminded me of a project I had thought about some time back - a shooting board for tuning the long edges of drawer sides. Keep in mind that the drawers I build tend to have sides 6-8mm thick. You cannot plane this accurately in a vise (well, only Warren can). I must say that Rob demonstrated wonderfully precise work, and this rubbed off on me. Hence the interest in creating a shooting board for long edges. Numbers: the runway to the fence is 750mm. The total length is about 880mm. The total width is 450mm. This is a large shooting board. Yet I can reach down it. It is not cumbersome to use. Its principal use is long side edges, but it can shoot ends as well (not to forget that I have a shooting board and plane dedicated to shooting ends). Solid wood? Well, sort of. The choices are MDF and ply. MDF is really not a great choice as it had a hard exterior (good) but soft interior which does its best to imitate a sponge when water is nearby (very bad). It is also very heavy. The plywood in Oz is .. well .. cr@p. There really is no other word to describe it. It is light, since full of voids, and generally looks like a pretzel. It is possible to purchase marine ply, but it is very expensive. My local Bunnings had these laminated panels on special, and they were cheaper than the unspeakable ply. The thicker panels are Merbau, which is heavy and hard. The lighter stuff is unknown and softer. The laminations will minimise movement. The panels were all 300mm wide (12" for those who have not yet entered the modern era). One-and-a half panels made up the base. These were planed down on the jointer and thicknesser, and then joined level with the aid of biscuits (yes, I have one .. damn useful they remain, when most traded theirs in for a Domino. So silly of you .... I have a Domino as well. These machines do different things). I digress. Glued up ... I use mild steel section (covered in tape) for cauls. As good as the results may be out of the thickness/planer, the surface is not going to be flat. I have not used this Marcou in yonks. Traversing to flatten across the grain ... Winding sticks are used to check for twist ... The high spots are marked and planed off ... For fun, I decided to enter the 21st century. Behold, the new winding sticks ... Then it was the turn of the runway. What are the chances that it runs parallel to the platform? Here are two squares on the platform. There is no gap between them as the panel is flat and level ... Now when I take them over to the runway, it can be seen that this is not parallel ... The next task is to plane the runway, checking along its length ... until you get this ... Next step: remove the fence from a Small Plow (plough!) and run a 1/4" groove along the side of the runway/base of the platform ... This is for dust, to keep the corner of the runway clear. Next step: shoot the rebate for the blade. I use a Veritas LA Jack. It does not matter much as I have three planes I could use, and the other two (seen shortly) have similar dimensions (the blade is about 6mm above the sole) ... This electrified router plane was used to create mortices for T-slots .. Now the fence could be attached. It is aligned with the blade rebate, and squared to a plane. I use a little glue to set it, then screw it on from above and below ... Here is the side fence being morticed ... Finally ... ! Here is the shooting board ... Shooting the sides of a drawer with a Veritas Custom #7 (the advantage of this plane is that it has a 40 degree frog, so can shoot end grain, plus with the chipbreaker it will plane sides very cleanly) ... Remove the side fence, close up the outer runner, and use the LN #51 to shoot ends ... The underside of the board is covered in rubber underlay ... This is as the long shooting board with live under the table saw and be used on the outboard ... I am not sure if this build was just a way of having some fun, or whether it will get serious use. Either way, it was time well spent. Stay safe. Regards from Perth Derek
  15. CS, a sharp knife will work. However a fishtail chisel makes the work much easier (since you are pushing forward and not cutting sideways) and will probably do so with greater orecision. Regards from Perth Derek