SandSWoodcraft

My First Woodworking Project (started a year ago)

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Here's an entranceway bench I started for my wife almost a year ago. This was the first major furniture project I ever tried out of one of the many woodworking books I bought. When I first started all I had was a table saw and 1880's wooden stanley jointer plane i picked up off ebay. I quickly became frustrated with my planing & sharpening skills, so I set it aside. I would pick it up every couple of months and do a little bit of work on it as I got better and got better tools. I finally decided to finish it after getting my Dewalt 735 planer and man has it turned out nice. It's rock maple with a walnut stripe sandwiched between on the lid and legs. Tung oil finish, and I must say I'm pretty pleased with the final result. Big thanks to Marc for his videos on sanding and butt hinge mortises!

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The flip top was an unexpected surprise. Nicely done.

Jonathan

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I agree. Very nice feature of the bench. Good job.

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Don't believe you. Can't be your first project. Not something that nice.

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Man, I'm so glad I never posted any pics of my first woodworking project, definitely not in this same league. Very nice job on this, you should be proud. It looks like you ripped a single piece of maple to make up the two sides of the top "sandwich"? If so, that's a great detail that a lot of first time makers would have totally missed on. I might have looked for some straighter grain on the front apron, but that's a pretty small nit picky thing. I'd be curious how the front and sides of the bench are joined together. Are those dowels, or plugged screws? I'm thinking that would be the only way to do that joint, since M&T would not be an option in this configuration.

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Man, I'm so glad I never posted any pics of my first woodworking project, definitely not in this same league. Very nice job on this, you should be proud. It looks like you ripped a single piece of maple to make up the two sides of the top "sandwich"? If so, that's a great detail that a lot of first time makers would have totally missed on. I might have looked for some straighter grain on the front apron, but that's a pretty small nit picky thing. I'd be curious how the front and sides of the bench are joined together. Are those dowels, or plugged screws? I'm thinking that would be the only way to do that joint, since M&T would not be an option in this configuration.

Thanks for all the positive feedback guys!

Bois: Yes, the top was one piece ripped to do the "sammich" for the top and a different piece with the same setup for the legs. The joinery is a dado on each of the legs for the bottom and screws with plugs to attach the aprons. The plan called for dowels, and I don't exactly remember what was going through my mind when I went with the screws. I actually jointed the faces for the "sammiches" with my old wooden stanley jointer plane and then used a craftsman biscuit setup for my router to add 5 biscuits on each interface of the lid and 2 on the legs.

My frustrations with the plane came with trying to get the top level and all the tearout i was having. I was learning as I went and didn't (and may still not) understand dealing with changing grain direction, and as has been my experience the rock maple was rather difficult to work with. That was when i got frustrated and set it aside for several months. I finally picked it back up after getting my Dewalt 735 and watching Marc's videos on sanding and finishing.

I really appreciate the constructive criticism too. I never thought about the grain on the apron, but I'm assuming the correct practice in fine woodworking is to keep the grain cohesive with horizontals and verticals in their orientation?

Hope everyone has a good weekend!

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