Ok, so there is no actual water. It’s just a phrase that comes close to describing how I felt trying to figure out my wood needs for this project.
Now that the holiday gift projects are behind me now I wanted to start a project that would take a bit of time to complete, but also would push me to improve my skills. One of the books I received as a Christmas gift from my wife was Robert Lang’s “Great Book of Shop Drawings for Craftsman Furniture”. After flipping through 300 plus pages of drawings I settled on the Gustav Stickley No. 800 Sideboard. For those that don’t have have the book, it is 54” long with six drawers of varying size and a shelf between the lower stretchers.
I chose to use some more of my wife’s Great-grandfathers cherry that we found after buying the family property a few years ago. It is all rough cut and 30-40 years old. The boards are mostly clear cherry, they have some small holes from insects. The holes are about ⅛” in diameter and are random throughout the wood. Most boards have either none or very few of these “blemishes” while others have more. So while the final product will not be made of “perfect” clear cherry I think that these features will give the piece an aged/rustic look to it’s classic craftsman style.
The first step was to figure out what raw boards are to become the various parts, that is when I began to feel overwhelmed. I took the cut list found in the shop drawings and as I selected the boards for a particular piece that board got marked on the end grain as to what piece would be made from it. Once I got into the swing of it, the feeling of being overwhelmed quickly faded. Once that was done the boards were laid out on the work bench, grouped by what piece they would become.
Then were to start, hmm….
Well, I chose to begin with the legs. Their finished dimensions are 1 ¾” x 1 ¾” x 38 3/16”. I had one piece of cherry that was large enough to make a leg from. However, after milling the piece of wood revealed are high number of these holes. Unfortunately I don’t have another piece large enough to match this leg. So I am going to glue up some ¾” boards to create the legs. I was careful to make sure that each leg came from one board, that way there wouldn’t be a noticeable difference in the grain/color of the leg.
And that’s all folks…. for now anyway, stay tuned for more!
-- Making dust and taking names!