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My First Bandsaw Box #9: Step 8 (and 8.5): Glue On the Front and Back of Your Drawer(s)... (Cut and Install Drawer Pulls)

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Blog entry by Jonathan posted 1347 days ago 1670 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 8: Step 7: Cut Out the Center of Your Drawer(s) Part 9 of My First Bandsaw Box series Part 10: Step 9: Glue on the Back of Your Box »

I want to apologize ahead of time as I didn’t take too many pictures of the glue-up of the front and back of the drawers. Really the only picture I have is a preparatory shot showing everything laid out and ready to be glued up:

As you can see, I used Titebond III. At first, I poured a little glue out onto the ceramic plate and then dipped the brush in it and applied it to the drawer cutout, then laid the back of the drawer onto the glued surface. I realized though that I could skip a step and carefully dispense the glue straight from the container, onto the drawer cutout, then use the brush to spread the glue, before attaching the front of the drawer. I did this for the main drawer, and the secret drawer. Since the main drawer was fairly thin, I used cauls. And with pine being as soft as it is, it doesn’t take much pressure from a clamp to cause a nasty indentation in the wood!

Since I neglected to take pictures of the glue-up, this entry will focus more on cutting and installing the drawer pulls. So I’ll go ahead and include that in as a sub-step under this section. (Just make sure your glue is dry on the front and back before you clamp your pulls on.) Besides, how many pictures of clamps and glue squeeze-out
do you really want to see?

————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————— (Step 8.5: Cut and Install Drawer Pulls)

Since I’ve got 2-drawers, I obviously need 2-pulls. The secret drawer pull was relatively straightforward. I simply used a scrap piece of the beetle kill pine, selected to match the grain pattern on the front of the secret drawer. I carefully cut out the little tiny pull on the bandsaw, and sanded to get it down to the exact size I wanted. I used CA (super glue) to attach the pull to the secret drawer, then clamped it with a small spring clamp.

Since the pull for the main drawer was going to be visible all the time, plus I had a specific design that was going on the front, I thought long and hard about how exactly I was going to make the pull, as well as where I was going to put it. I thought about making a small pull out of the pine and glueing it dead center on the face of the drawer, then woodburning it to blend in with front of the drawer. Hmm, that still didn’t seem like it was really going to be a design element, and more something I was trying to hide.

Then I thought about using ebony in the same fashion, making a simple pull that would be set dead center again. I figured the ebony would be a classy touch, but it seemed like it would actually be worse than the pine pull as it would sort of stick out even more, definitely distracting, if not all together detracting from the design I had planned for the front drawer.

Then all of a sudden, it popped into my head: why not incorporate an ebony pull into the design on the front of the drawer? I had never used ebony before, but had purchased numerous ebony pen blanks at Rockler when they were having their grand reopening sale a month or two ago. I specifically bought them to use as square plugs and to turn into drawer handles. At $0.99/each, I figured they could just sit around until I was ready to use them.

OK, so at this point, if you’ve read the blog series from start, to finish, you might remember, way back when, that I was using the Penn State Nittany Lion logo for inspiration. I am actually going to put it on the front of the drawer, which is why the shape of the box and the drawer had to be ovals. It will be woodburned onto the front. So, the ebony will compliment the woodburned pine, at least, this is the intention. After thinking about it, I figured I could place the pull off-center and actually use the shape of the inner ear of the lion as the pull:

First, I had to get the ebony cut to size, before any shaping could take place:

I took the image that I had sized for the front of the drawer, then placed a piece of tracing paper under it and traced the ear onto the piece of ebony. The carbon barely showed up on the ebony, so I took a pencil and went over the line. Now at least I had a shiny line to see for cutting purposes:

I took a piece of plywood and ran it through the bandsaw part way, then clamped it down to act as a temporary zero clearance insert so that there wouldn’t be tearout on the underside of the ear:

I cut close to the line, but not on it, figuring I could hand sand and file away the remainder:

I then carefully filed down to the line with some mini files and sanded it smooth, up to 600-grit, then used 0000 steel wool to buff it a bit:

I won’t show you the pull glued-on, as I don’t want to ruin the surprise of what the front of the drawer looks like!

I used Titebond III to glue the main pull onto the front of the main drawer. I thought the bond might be a bit better than the CA glue. Looking back, I would’ve used the CA glue if I were to do it over. I spent a lot of time with an Xacto knife and sandpaper trying to get rid of the glue squeeze-out, then resanding the pull, and finally reburning some of the woodburned front. Oh well, it looks the way I want it to now.

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."



7 comments so far

View degoose's profile

degoose

6996 posts in 1988 days


#1 posted 1347 days ago

Yes, the pulls are one of the things that make or break a box.

-- Drink twice... and don't bother to cut... @ lazylarrywoodworks.com.au For lovers of all things timber...

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1684 days


#2 posted 1347 days ago

I couldn’t agree more, Larry. That’s why I thought long and hard about this one and am satisfied with the result.

I can’t wait to show you all the finished result in due time! I need to finish the blog series out before posting the finished project so I don’t put the cart before the horse. I took plenty of pictures of the completed box this morning, then my wife wrapped it up and I took it to the post office to send it to its new home.

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View spamfilterman's profile

spamfilterman

147 posts in 1656 days


#3 posted 1347 days ago

Stupid question, since you mentioned buffing with the steel wool…. when you use steel wool, does it tear apart on you into thousands of little pieces of metal? It does that to me, which is very annoying when buffing something out with it. Having to clean up after it makes it almost not worth it for me.

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1684 days


#4 posted 1347 days ago

Yes, that happens with the fine steel wool. Guess I just deal with it. I usually vacuum the piece of, then sometimes hit it with mineral spirits after that to make sure I’ve got all of it. Maybe there’s another trick out there that somebody knows about?

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1684 days


#5 posted 1347 days ago

I was going back through pictures for another blog post and did come across one of the drawer glue-up. Not exactly exciting, but here it is anyway, showing the cauls and the squeeze-out:

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View Pete Jansen's profile

Pete Jansen

250 posts in 1555 days


#6 posted 1345 days ago

I think I’m going to use CA glue tomorrow when I glue mine on. I’m scared epoxy may squeeze out and ruin all mu drawer work. Thanks again for the idea.

-- Lovin' sawdust in beautiful Fort Collins, Colorado

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1684 days


#7 posted 1344 days ago

The CA glue still squeezed out but wasn’t as noticeable. I still trimmed it off, then lightly sanded. You are welcome Pete.

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

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