Various shenanigans #16: Trying to make as perfectly as possible

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Blog entry by JeremyPringle posted 01-07-2014 03:35 AM 2217 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 15: Planing a table top by hand Part 16 of Various shenanigans series Part 17: Still trying to make perfect.. »

I like to read. Im also somewhat of a nerd, so when I have time I read LOTR, HP, Ice and Fire, Star Wars ect. But.. my favorite books to read are woodworking books. During the summer I read ‘By Hand and Eye” and I loved it. Its one of those books where I keep it handy when I am drawing stuff. Tom Fidgen, his books and his blogs are pretty awesome, especially if you are 1.Canadian, 2. into hand tools. 3. Have a beard. (I happen to be 3 for 3) But even more than all of those.. I like historical woodworking books. Marquetry by Pierre Ramond is one that I cant put down, I read and reread it over and over again… and recently I am reading “To Make as Perfectly as Possible” Lost Art Press’ French to English translation of the Marquetry section by Roubo.

If you do not happen to know, I am currently building a chevalet de marqueterie of which is used to cut marquetry. Since Roubo was before the chevy was invented, there is no mention of it in the book. But there are drawings of primitive (I know, me using a word like primitive? How hypocritical of me eh?) versions of the chevy clamping system but still using a hand fret saw. I am no stranger to some forms of marquetry, but there is still lots to learn from this book. So.. I have decided to follow along and try some new things. I will do this on the side to keep me sane when I have a few seconds while I am working on commission projects.

I am going to be making the decorative edge banding on plate 287 Fig. 2. If you have the book, you can check it out and see, page 78. If you don’t have the book… you will just have to continue reading until I get there. In the book, Don Williams is actually doing most of the things that Roubo describes, so there are portions of the book where he is showing how he is replicating what Roubo describes. I’m just basically going to copy what Don is doing to an extent, but I also happen to be using some new modern designed hand tools in the process, and tools that I have available to me.

First is to make the background. Enter King Louis XIV. Louis cubes!! I love Louis cubes. Since I have done lots of them before, I already have everything pretty much set up.
First I joint the edge of the veneer that I am using, this happens to be cherry. I used to use a plane on my shooting board, but Veritas has come up with this shooting sander… I quite like it.

I glued a straight piece of wood onto a board and I use that as a fence.

I put a thin ruler on top and I use that as my width straight edge,

Then using a knife I cut the veneer, then joint the edge again

Line it up in the jig and use a razor saw to cut

Assemble until its big enough for your needs.

When I have it big enough I will use OBG and glue it to a panel. Woo hoo, and excuse to make my panel press… finally.

Thanks for checking in.

4 comments so far

View shipwright's profile


7992 posts in 2821 days

#1 posted 01-07-2014 05:42 AM

FYI, Patrick is fairly sure that the ebinistes in Paris were already using the chevalet in its final evolution when Roubo wrote the books. It was however a very well kept secret by the guild and did not really become known to the rest of the world until much later.
Is the chevy stalled waiting for parts?

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees.

View JeremyPringle's profile


321 posts in 2497 days

#2 posted 01-07-2014 06:11 AM

Interesting. Would not surprise me one bit.

Yes, the chevy build is on hold. Have not even ordered parts yet. Iv been too busy working on commission stuff. Im looking at Feb before Im done what I have on my plate.

View Schwieb's profile


1858 posts in 3485 days

#3 posted 01-09-2014 01:54 PM

Your journey into marquetry/ parquetry along with the work of Paul an others continues to prod me to get off my lazy a**; quit procrastinating and just jump in and do something. I’ve got lots of veneer that was given to me, I have the sketches and materials to build a press; even have already made a saw and double bevel cutting table. I just can’t seem to make the first move. I wish I could just be a fly on the wall for awhile in one of your shops and watch how the layout and fabrication of a picture develops. Wishful thinking.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View JeremyPringle's profile


321 posts in 2497 days

#4 posted 01-10-2014 01:18 AM

I cant speak for Paul, but when I am working in the shop (especially right now with several projects on the go) I am very easily distractible. Im half done this monster table, I am starting (today) some display cases for a local store that is about to open, casting some custom pens, working on my marquetry project and Im sure I will find something SQUIRREL!

Where was I?

All I can suggest.. is just jump in and do it.

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