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Farmhouse Table w_Buffet #3: Table Aprons

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Blog entry by Smitty_Cabinetshop posted 04-21-2015 12:13 AM 2297 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Legs for the Table Part 3 of Farmhouse Table w_Buffet series Part 4: Buffet Framework »

Okay, the first two installments have been short and to the point, a format that will continue throughout this series.
.
.
.
Uhm, NOT.

Time for another blog entry, of course, but this one will have some rambling about this tool or that, and include some pictures that some label as ‘Tool Porn.’ Ahh, now that’s the way to write a blog series on LJs, right? So with that teaser out of the way, time to talk about aprons. And I don’t mean these:

But these:

Apron measurements came straight from that diagram, except that I added an inch to either end of all the apron cuts to account for tenons. It was a very straightforward activity, jointing the long edges of each apron, top and bottom. The #8 Jointer (Heft & Hubris) is a tool that simply refuses to stop once it’s in motion; no hand tools compare to the feeling you get using this beast.

But I digress. To do the jointing means taking passes with the #8 along the entire length of the stuff until at least a near-full-length shaving is taken. Flat should be attained at that point, and it’s confirmed with a winding stick of your choosing. The second quality check comes with the square; you want the new edge to be square the board’s face. If it’s not there are a couple of options that I’d like to explore.

The first is technique. Let’s say the edge runs away from the face, like this:

Conversations here on LJs tell me it’s somewhat common to inadvertently hold a plane off-level like this when jointing. Could be a left hand/right hand balance thing, or even an imperfect clamping of the piece to be worked. Doesn’t matter, it happens. To fix it is to hold the plane such that it takes the high side down a little with each pass of the tool until the outside skew is gone. And that’s the way I usually addressed the problem. It typically meant taking a bunch more passes, though.

Instead of adjusting my grip on the plane, this time I tried something different that was mentioned in Robert Wearing’s Woodworking Essentials: using the lateral adjust on the cutter to correct the skew. I adjusted the cutter of the plane in such a way that it counters the worker’s tendency to apply the slant in the first place. In other words, in this example, I extended the cutter a bit more from the sole of the plane on side that is towards me at the bench, and with two passes:

The result was spot-on square.

And by the time I was half-way through the overall exercise, I was taking level swipes for flat and hitting a couple more to address skew without even checking for square along the way and it worked every time. Funny how I’m that predictable.

Once the aprons were dressed and cut to the length, it was time to mark them for tenons. The key here is having a tool that can reliably capture and apply markings from the mortises that are already in place (my M&T equivalent of ‘tails first’ is to cut mortises first, but astute readers will have noticed in the second blog the reclaimed legs were pre-morticed) to the stock that will receive the tenons. Where to mark? Good question.

Besides being made of 2×4s, the apron design included a piece of 1x stock on the bottom of each apron as a detail. I like it, and want to add it to both pieces. The depth of the resultant ledge was wag’d visually by making a pattern piece that featured tenons to fit the mortises extant in the legs and a 1x ledge that ended with some setback from the surface of each leg (if that makes sense).

My pattern pieces:

The side marks of the tenons to be cut were transferred to a marking gauge.

And in case you just missed it, when it comes to marking gauges there’s no substitute for rosewood and brass (see Galoot Index): the Stanley #198. Here’s the business end of the tool:

And a blurry pic of the Stanley logo w/ No. 198 on one of the marker stems:

Defining the thickness of the tenons is easy (that’s what doing mortises first does for you!); I needed to set the gauge based on the face of the apron stuff. Here’s taking those settings from the gauge and putting them to a piece of apron stock:

I cut the tenons out of the 2×4 apron stuff with bench hook and backsaw (no glamour there), and for awhile had legs and apron pieces scattered around the shop.

Follow-on fit checks went well, so it was time for glue-up. First, the short ends were put together. The 1x stock held the legs square to the apron, BTW.

Then the long sides.

Six foot bar clamps and ratchet straps come in handy at times like this.

Checked everything for square and ensured all four legs were solidly on the floor, too. Let the glue cure overnight, glued and nailed the 1x adder stock to the aprons then applied primer to everything.

That completed the table frame! Enough of this installment, so until next time thanks for looking!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --



12 comments so far

View Pat3's profile

Pat3

104 posts in 1346 days


#1 posted 04-21-2015 03:32 AM

Nice post, Great progress.
I use the same technique with my #8 as well, works like a champ.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17971 posts in 2035 days


#2 posted 04-21-2015 09:47 AM

You know its going to be a good day when you start it with a cup of coffee and a work along in Smitty’s shop.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.net

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2086 days


#3 posted 04-21-2015 11:37 AM

Thanks, Gents, it was good getting this first assy done! Very pleased with the result, table is incredibly solid.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View AnthonyReed's profile

AnthonyReed

8743 posts in 1907 days


#4 posted 04-21-2015 02:29 PM

+1 Don, so very true.

Six foot bar clamps and ratchet straps come in handy at times like this.” – Just in case you have several lying around like everyone does.

Thank you Smitty!!

-- ~Tony

View JayT's profile

JayT

4786 posts in 1678 days


#5 posted 04-21-2015 02:58 PM

Good stuff, Smitty.

By the way, you know that when I finally build a bigger shop, I’m going to come steal your floor, don’t you?

-- "Good judgement is the result of experience. A lot of experience is the result of poor judgement."

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

23209 posts in 2334 days


#6 posted 04-21-2015 03:26 PM

This is coming along nicely, Smitty. It is going to be a good looking table.

helluvawreck aka Charles
http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

7115 posts in 2619 days


#7 posted 04-21-2015 04:11 PM

Table is coming together nicely Smitty. great show as usual.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2086 days


#8 posted 04-21-2015 05:48 PM

“Six foot bar clamps and ratchet straps come in handy at times like this.” – Just in case you have several lying around like everyone does.

- AnthonyReed

Tony, those 6’ bar clamps have been hanging on the wall for the better part of three years and this is exactly the second time they’ve come in handy. Gotta gloat a little bit, after paying all that room and board. :-)

The floor is staying put, JayT. And so am I. And thanks to Charles and Maur!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View terryR's profile

terryR

6324 posts in 1776 days


#9 posted 04-22-2015 01:45 PM

looks great, Smitty! Cannot wait to see the finish.
I enjoy seeing your shop a mess, and your hand tools as always!
The logo on that 198 is sweet; what a gorgeous tool…

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2086 days


#10 posted 04-22-2015 02:49 PM

It is definitely a mess, Terry. Right after this part was done, the realization hit that things needed to be re-organized and cleared so there would be room to work on pieces of this size. So the scenery will de-clutter in a bit in future installments.

RE: the #198. I’ve done my share of coveting on the Tite-Mark gauges, but always come back to the fact I will not use anything but my #198 / #199 tools. Not looking forward to sharpening the wheels (the #199 really needs it), but that’s another story (likely) involving the careful use of a short piece of dowel, a wood screw, power drill and very fine sandpaper. Can’t screw up, there are no replacements ‘cept for buying a lesser model Stanley wheel gauge and scarfing from that.

The extremes vintage users will go to, right?

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View terryR's profile

terryR

6324 posts in 1776 days


#11 posted 04-22-2015 04:57 PM

hmmm…never thought about trying to sharpen those wheel cutters…I was lucky enough to receive a micro-adjust brass model from ErikF in the last swap, but I’m pretty sure it uses Veritas replacements.

Sounds like we need to follow eBay for 198 cutters!

And, another reason I NEED a small metal lathe. :)

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

13738 posts in 2086 days


#12 posted 04-23-2015 03:40 AM

Next installment is up!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

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