The "Lunch After Thanksgiving" Desk


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Photo-dump ahead! Catching up on several short work sessions. The drawers needed a central divider to support the slides, so I added on, using a sliding dovetail for strength. Clamps, scraps

Final installment. First, I flipped the case upside-down to attach the top. The front edge is screwed through a cleat that was glued across the inside of the upper apron rail. Icepick helps re-align t

Teaser photo: this pile of walnut, cherry, and mulberry is about to start a new life as a shaker-inspired, trestle base writing desk.  The cheesy title comes from it consisting of a bunch o

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Here is a basic 3D model I built to determine proportions and such. Not much detail, but you can see modified shaker-style trestle legs are evident.  There may be some decorative details added to the casework, and there will probably end up being 2 drawers, instead of the one shown here. 

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Not much to show today, just finished bringing all my stock to thickness. Next will be the arduous task of extracting usable boards from this lot of low-quality raw material. I'm trying to use up a bunch of stock I bought cheap from a couple of different "shade-tree" sawyers, before I realized there was nothing to be gained from buying cheap and wasting a large portion of it. Hence, the paint.  At least this junky wood will no longer be eating my storage space...

  

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@Coop, I like the mulberry for its workability, and its lovely golden color. It will polish to a decent sheen with no finish applied. However, it slowly turns to a milk chocolate brown, apparently from UV exposure. No sapwood to speak of, and the color is very uniform. The color change can be accelerated by applying a lye solution. I've never seen a 'curly' mulberry board, but a knot I planed across revealed a shimmering chatoyance in the swirling grain that rivals a peacock's tail feathers. If there was enough to complete the top in all mulberry, I would try to talk my wife into it. But she want's it painted, and I had to fill out the top with a piece of walnut that is half sapwood, anyway.

More design discussion this evening. Looks like we will go with two drawers, inset fronts with a grooved border, and oval bail-type pulls, ala George Hepplewhite. A blend of Hepplewhite and Shaker elements.

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Started straigt-edging the boards before work this morning. My straight / tapering sled references the fence, rather than the miter slot, so getting an edge on any width is possible.

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Of course, I forgot to open the new blast gate under the saw, so the first cut made a huge mess. With no collection above the table, ripping is a bit messy, anyway.

You can see in that board, why I am not upset about painting the walnut!

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Yeah paint that walnut. It's kind of an embarrassment to walnut and should be coverd up... :D

This looks like an exciting project. I'm glad to hear you have recovered (different thread you mentioned a run in with Covid).

12 hours ago, wtnhighlander said:

I'm trying to use up a bunch of stock I bought cheap from a couple of different "shade-tree" sawyers, before I realized there was nothing to be gained from buying cheap and wasting a large portion of it

I feel like there is some luck involved with this. I've bought lumber from Urban sawyers before and had great luck with it and wasted some material but ended up ahead. The trouble is the fad that made their prices skyrocket. I keep going to a yard when i can get graded walnut cheaper than urban Ash or Oak.

 

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Awesome work so far really enjoying this. I like that you don't have the saw plate in while using your sled like that. It looks like dust collection is quite effective. I know when i use my dado stack it seems like I get 50% capture at best.

1 hour ago, wtnhighlander said:

For the beginers that see this, the spacer on the saw fence allows the fence to be used as a stop for positioning the stock, but is clear during the cut to avoid binding & kickback.

So we shouldn't start the debate about it being a non through cut?:ph34r:

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Yeah, throat plate is removed for dust collection, as this milling operation creates a lot. My little 1.5 hp DC is a low pressure blower, not effective at all unless the air can flow freely. Since the stock rides a sled, AND there is no off-cut piece bigger than a splinter, the plate isn't needed, anyway.

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I was going to ask about your "ZCI".  So the plate is not needed because there's no offcut AND you're using a sled?  What if you weren't using a sled, but cutting directly on the table top? 

I guess I've been wondering lately what people do for a ZCI when using a dado set?

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@Mark J, I suppose the sled is just marginally better than a miter gage with auxilliary fence, in that it supports the work from bottom and back as crosses the yawning chasm in the table and engages the cutter.

As for zci and dado stacks, make 'em just like for a saw blade .... but who is going to take time to make and insert for every possible width of dado? At best most folks might have one or two inserts, matching the max width of the stack, and perhaps one commonly used size smaller. While I have made a couple of inserts, if I need zero clearance, I typically turn to a sled. Frankly, because the ledge my throat plate sits on is oddly shaped, its faster to bang out a sled.

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Looking good so far Ross.  The handle on that hand saw looks worn in a really cool way.

Marc did a kitchen cabinet refresh in his mom's place a few months back and he did what you are thinking.  He used GF's milk paint and their High Performance satin for the top coat.  I was going to do the same thing until I ran across the Benjamin Moore product I used.

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