Gretchin's Cradle


Vic

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Thanks guys. That is much appreciated. I took the piece to my day job, today. I had a lot of people that had wanted to see it. It got put through it's paces today so, I'm gonna go the epoxy route first. These are really good friends of mine and since I'm not worried about the piece actually falling, I trust them to keep an eye on it and I can take other action at that time. Again, I really appreciate the support, critique and humor this community provides!

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Here's the completed project, ready for delivery. I'll load more of the pics into the Flickr slide show at the top of this thread. This was a fun and educational build. Thanks for all the feedback. I think Dale's note about gender plays an important part into this. I DO find it a more masculine piece with the highly figured wood of the cradle. I think the lines of the trestle are definitely on the feminine side.

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Vic,

You did a very nice job on the cradle. I was most impressed by the laminated legs - the lamination lines just disappeared! Neat twist on the box joints too, somewhat reminiscent of Greene & Greene. I like the simple mechanism to allow the cradle to rock or stay fixed. I didn't find anything to critique.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I wanted to go ahead and post this now. What I would like in addition to design critique are any processing critiques. The following is a response to friend who had seen it and also wanted to know how I like the Veritas router plane. If there are other processes I did that need more explanation, please ask. I want to take full advantage of this room to gain as much knowledge as possible with each build. So please look critically.

Thanks Vic,

The Project: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30350434@N07/sets/72157625182276454/

I used the Veritas router plane for two specific operations. You see when I used it for the dados on the cradle bottom. I also used it on the inside curves of the legs to house the gussets. I would've used a power router if I felt as confident of the set up, but on both these operations, it was easier (for me) to do it by hand. On the head and foot boards, I would've had to build a jig. As I am building in relative dimension through out the piece, I didn't take the bottom of the cradle to a specific dimension, but rather until it was clean and in the ball park of thickness I wanted.

On the legs, I don't know of a better way. A jig for it a bit beyond me. I'm sure someone could figure it out, but I didn't see it. Also considering the amount I had to fuss to get the joint tight, I would've still had to use it.

Also, in answer to whether I like it? YES..love it. It very precise. You have to do a good job of cutting in the layout lines, but they are fairly easy to follow. You also have to switch direction from time to time to account for grain change.

I got the panels cut today and will finish the dry fit of trestle ends tomorrow. If I'm lucky and time goes as I plan, I should be able to figure out the trestle tomorrow, too.

This has been an extremely fun project. My friend Joe and his wife Gretchin are expecting in about 6 weeks. The pressure is on, but I think I'm gonna be OK. I have really enjoyed designing on the fly!! It's a rush when I get a part of the design together or when one thing sends me in a different direction. The project was originally to be completely out of the Birch I'd bought. The boards were in the rough and when I milled them, I realized I would have to sacrifice efficiency of the boards to get the most out of the grain. The sides are a really beautiful piece of crotch wood and the head and foot boards from a stunning piece of flame Birch. At that point I started thinking about my options. That's when I brought in the Walnut. It was just sitting in the shop waiting for a purpose anyway. The straight grain in the Walnut is what pushed me into trying a bentwood lamination. I did a fairly decent job for my first glue up.

I'm looking forward to playing with my ideas for the stretcher.

The lamination came out great, what kind of glue did you use?

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Chris, I used one of the glues Marc has suggested, DAP Weldwood Plastic Resin Glue. It comes in a powder and is mixed with water. The water needs to be above 70 degrees, and I'm guessing warmer is better, as I still had a lot of clumping to deal with. I applied it with a stainless steel roller and managed to squish and mix the undissolved bits as I went. Not ideal. I'll definitely have to figure something out for the future. Rob Bois used another glue recently on a nice bow front table he is building. I may try it, if I can't figure out a better solution for this. The other product recommended most is UniBond 800. Looking at the MSDS, I don't see much difference. But, Marc was a Bio Dude before he was the Whisperer Dude, so I'm sure he could make better sense of the documents. Found hereand here.

The biggest thing is sizing the form correctly to the finished size of the laminates and good clamping pressure. I did much better on my second glue up.

Rob Bois recently shot a podcast episode using a different glue and I think his glue lines are even better. Definitely worth watching his videos, check him out here, if you don't already subscribe to his feed.

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Thank you to Dyami, Susie Q, and Crafty Lady for the kind words. I'll be getting to the glue up and the design of the rocker locker mechanism soon on my blog Tumblewood. A friend shamed me into starting to write it again. I'm glad he did. It's getting easier to write and I'm beginning to enjoy it.

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Chris, I used one of the glues Marc has suggested, DAP Weldwood Plastic Resin Glue. It comes in a powder and is mixed with water. The water needs to be above 70 degrees, and I'm guessing warmer is better, as I still had a lot of clumping to deal with. I applied it with a stainless steel roller and managed to squish and mix the undissolved bits as I went. Not ideal. I'll definitely have to figure something out for the future. Rob Bois used another glue recently on a nice bow front table he is building. I may try it, if I can't figure out a better solution for this. The other product recommended most is UniBond 800. Looking at the MSDS, I don't see much difference. But, Marc was a Bio Dude before he was the Whisperer Dude, so I'm sure he could make better sense of the documents. Found hereand here.

The biggest thing is sizing the form correctly to the finished size of the laminates and good clamping pressure. I did much better on my second glue up.

Rob Bois recently shot a podcast episode using a different glue and I think his glue lines are even better. Definitely worth watching his videos, check him out here, if you don't already subscribe to his feed.

Thanks for the info, I've used that one before. I find the winter a hard time to use it unless it's a heated shop. I have to check out the link. Have a Merry!

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  • 2 months later...

What a great project, and a greater result! I'm just awed by the combination of simplicity of design and technical mastery. Thanks for sharing the design process.

Thanks, Tex. It was a lot of fun and a great learning experience to build it. Btw, I'm blogging about it now on my site. www.tumblewood.blogspot.com If you have any questions or insights, please comment.

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Thanks to Marc's Guild and the great people I've met through the excellent community he has built here and on previous incarnations of the forums, as well as the Live Chat/Stream page guys, Gretchin's Cradle has been accepted for publishing in the Reader's Guild of FineWoodworking. I could not have done it without all the advise and encouragement. Thank you, all!!!

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  • 1 month later...

A little dream becomes a reality. ME<<<<Happy Camper! Btw, this is not Birch. It's American Elm. A bit of a bugger because of the wild grain, but worth the hassle. I have no idea why FWW changed it to Birch. I'm pretty sure my sawyer knows what he's talking about.

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