New Bedroom #2: How long do I have?

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Blog entry by Dave Durham posted 04-04-2009 10:29 AM 1748 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: The Build Begins! Part 2 of New Bedroom series Part 3: Some Assembly Required »

The leisurely 4 to 6 week project just became a 2 to 3 week project! The mattress and box spring arrived 4 weeks EARLY. They now sit in the middle of my living room taking up prime real estate:

This has given me renewed vigor to work nonstop to finish the project. I started the week working on all the mortises. This was my first time using my Delta mortising machine. It’s pretty cool. Worked like a charm. I bought it a while ago and hadn’t used it on a project until now.

I had to make almost 200 mortises, so it came in pretty handy. I used the 1/4” and 3/8” bits. I needed to add the collar extension for some of the mortises but it was pretty straight forward.

Lots of pieces of complex wood. This project is different from most of my other projects in that each piece of wood has a lot of work done to it before the assembly. I tend to design simpler components, but this is what was needed.

Remember to always keep your drawings and sketches close at hand. They saved me a couple of times:

Here is the bottom of the footboard before I started sanding for final shape. The initial cut was on my Jet band saw. I had a devil of a time drawing the original curve on the wood as a cut line. It’s a circle of radius 208 inches.

I decided to add a 45 degree chamfer to the top of the headboard and footboard. So a quick route with the chamfering bit took off the edge.

I’ve started cutting the mortises for the 6” Bed Rail Fasteners:

It’s all coming together. Most of the components are cut and ready to be finished, which I should start tomorrow by staining.

Room prep continues. Bought all the paint for the walls (and paint hardware). Ordered the fan and “stained glass” window treatment:


Had a minor accident. I was dry fitting a mortise and tenon joint to test the accuracy of the cuts – it was pretty snug. While trying to pull the two stuck pieces apart the piece came out with such force that I hit myself in the face with the end of the slat! (Yes I was wearing my safety glasses) It left 3 “rivulets” of blood on my lower cheek. It probably would have taken a tooth out had it hit me in the mouth. Not a big injury but it’s a reminder; I’ve only been injured twice in the shop and NEITHER involved power tools. You can be hurt by anything. Always be vigilant with safety.

At this rate I should be done with the bed in about a week. Baring anymore surprises. I’m still working on the designs for the Night Stands (which will be next) and the Dresser and Chest of Drawers. I’ll keep you posted. Thanks for your time.

-- Dave Durham - California - see me at

8 comments so far

View jcame's profile


72 posts in 3577 days

#1 posted 04-04-2009 11:56 AM

I really like that vice on your bench!! Is it a Jorgensen? I also like the bench, Did you build it? Anyway GREAT job on the bed. Its looking very nice and that matress looks comfortable.

-- Jed,Ala,

View Dave Durham's profile

Dave Durham

61 posts in 3355 days

#2 posted 04-04-2009 12:21 PM

Thanks Jed, it’s coming along. The vice is a Tucker Vise by Veritas:,41659

It’s a nice tool. The bench is also from Veritas:,41637

The twin-screw vice on the far end is also quite handy. I bought dogs, pups and assorted bench clamps to go with it. I know it’s considered good form to build your own bench, but this one’s awful darn nice.

-- Dave Durham - California - see me at

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3822 days

#3 posted 04-04-2009 01:03 PM

Dave, this is an interesting post to follow. I know that the thrill of cutting all those mortises wore off after the first few were completed but the end result is going to be well worth the effort. This is looking pretty good so far.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View gizmodyne's profile


1779 posts in 4090 days

#4 posted 04-04-2009 03:45 PM

Looking good.

Where do you buy your lumber?

-- -John "Do I have to keep typing a smiley? Just assume it's a joke."

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3774 days

#5 posted 04-04-2009 04:12 PM

Hi Dave

Sorry to hear about your minor accident. Hope you are alright. Very nice posting once again. Looking forward to seeing the completed piece. Also would love to see the completed room. I am sure it will be exquisite when done. Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Dave Durham's profile

Dave Durham

61 posts in 3355 days

#6 posted 04-04-2009 09:24 PM

I’m always looking for more wood places. The wood for this project was bought at good olde Lowe’s. It’s all Oak (the slats holding up the mattress are Poplar).

I will definitely show pix of the room as it too is in a state of becoming.

-- Dave Durham - California - see me at

View furnitologist's profile


198 posts in 4013 days

#7 posted 04-09-2009 02:07 PM

Dave…......that’s alot of mortices. I like your scrap piece of paper with the math and sketches. I was talking to a guy yesterday and we joked about all the shop notes that accumulate on scrap pieces of paper and wood. This fellow woodworker mentioned how its fun to find the scraps over time as a reminder of previous work or even the proverbial what the heck was I figuring here.

View Dave Durham's profile

Dave Durham

61 posts in 3355 days

#8 posted 04-12-2009 10:59 AM

I keep all my scrap paper. I actually keep a notebook of all the plans and scrap I’ve used for all my projects. I’m not exactly sure why yet, since I don’t go back and rebuild anything. But it’s nice to know I have some record of what I was trying to build in the first place. Math has served me well but I often use both fractions and decimals on the same drawings…yea I know, but I still think both ways.

-- Dave Durham - California - see me at

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