Thorsen House Cabinet #8: Progressing....

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Blog entry by EläväPuu posted 04-01-2015 03:55 PM 1156 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 7: Putting it to the wood! Part 8 of Thorsen House Cabinet series Part 9: A little more on finishing.... »

Not a huge amount to add today I’m afraid. The main carcase of the cabinet has had its medium sanding completed (up to 240 grit) and the first guide layer of wax added.

I’m genuinely not sure whether this is a valid or efficient method of using wax (it certainly uses up a lot of it) however it produces far superior results than those from the instructions or other methods I’ve picked up. My waxing procedure is to start early. Once all the glueup and sanding that alters form is completed, I rub in wet wax (tin warmed in hot water till it liquifies) with gloved fingers, and follow that up with a rub down with 0000 steel wool to burnish the surface and get wax into areas my fingers just can’t manage. The wax is cleaned off sooner rather than later since this is not a finishing layer, and drier wax is a lot more graft to remove.

My rationale is that this initial waxing highlights any problem areas, such as blotching (common with Birch), scratches that I missed, end grain that hasn’t had sufficient attention, stray glue marks, raised furry grain or other issues. The penetrating nature of the wax as a liquid (I should probably buy the liquid version to start out with) helps to sink deeper into the grain and fill out any pores. I then go over any significant faults with more 240 and generally rub back the whole waxed surface to 320. The paper clogs up quite readily as you would expect, but the final surface becomes velvety smooth and even for subsequent wax applications with 0000/00000 wool. By this point Birch starts to glow after the wax is buffed out and the wood surface burnished up.

The chatoyance in wilder areas of the wood become especially beautiful.

At close of play today….

First door completed (short of Ebony plugs, glazing, hinges and catches). Lighter spots on the left outer side of the cabinet are spot fixes for light scratches (probably debris on the work surface). Although not fully attached, the skirt is now sitting in the correct position with the carcase elevated on a piece of plywood thicknessed to the 8mm offset required.

Muntin work. The overall weight of the finest horizontal muntin is 11mm (~7/16”) and the single lower muntin 15mm (~19/32”). Very tricky but satisfying assembly work.

I’m happy with the fit of the door. Each angled rebate was taken to and from the spindle moulder several times to ensure a snug fit. Loose enough so the door doesn’t sit with friction but tight enough that air will (in theory) cushion an accidental slam.

-- "What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence"

2 comments so far

View Mark Kornell's profile

Mark Kornell

1057 posts in 1951 days

#1 posted 04-03-2015 05:58 AM

Elävä, if that’s just the initial application of wax, I really want to see the final result. Care to elaborate on the overall was finishing process? Or do we have to wait as you complete the build?

-- Mark Kornell, Kornell Wood Design

View EläväPuu's profile


31 posts in 701 days

#2 posted 04-03-2015 07:47 AM

Thank you for your warm feedback Mark! Your telephone table is one project that stuck in my mind quite specifically, especially your brave use of Potassium Dichromate (it looks closer to the truth and more descriptively evil when written out as “K₂Cr₂O₇”) and the Sketchup/photo comparison. I more or less did the same thing to show the cabinet in situ.

The adventures we’ll be having with mounting to stud locations is grist for another time I think. Certainly, the cabinet will better suit a larger home when we decide to move from this conveniently-inexpensive location!

I’ll make a subsequent blog post as typing this out has become another verbose wall of text….

- Carl

PS. “Eläväpuu” is more or less “Living Wood” in Finnish language :-)

-- "What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence"

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