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First attempt at a hutch

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Blog entry by Paul posted 01-07-2010 04:20 AM 1825 reads 0 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

First attempt at a hutch
some of the cuts
more framing
I started this thread with questions in the forum section but I’ll finish in here since I am posting the progress.
I thought I started this blog already but couldn’t find it so I’m starting this one.
I bought the New Yankee workshop plans for #111 hutch. Having never built a piece of furniture I thought it was going to be hard. So far it’s is coming along fairly easily. I go back to the video when I have questions and they are usually answered in there.
Tonight I assembled the frame. I quickly realized that this building units this large is not fun in a one car garage. I bought the house with the existing bench in there and only made changes to the height. This piece of furniture is helping me understand exactly what I do and do not need in this garage. After it’s done I will work on organizing the garage for my needs.
Here’s a photo of the work so far.
The glue-up
I used screws to pull it together. In the video Norm use nailes and a hammer from the inside. When I tried to use a nail gun on a test piece I was not able to get the gun into the tight corners . Since the piece will be painted I used screws to hold it together till the glue dires. I don’t have clamps long enough for this.



19 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112535 posts in 2300 days


#1 posted 01-07-2010 04:23 AM

Wow great progress should be fantastic.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#2 posted 01-07-2010 08:31 AM

I have a question I need a little help with.
The plans call for dovetail draws but I don’t want to buy a jig at this time and I’m certainly not skilled or tooled enough to do them by hand. I can however do a box joint. Do you think a box joint will hold together permanently or will I be remaking these draws in the near future?
And another question is when I joined two boards together to make one wide board for each side panel, I used biscuits. Is there a standard rule about how far apart biscuits should be and how far from the edge they should start/end.
Thanks in advance.

View tooldad's profile

tooldad

657 posts in 2438 days


#3 posted 01-07-2010 08:45 AM

I may start an endless array of arguments, however biscuits are more for alignment than they are for strength. I use them when I cannot use my drum sander. I typically put them about a foot apart, or 3-5 per seam if I am using them.

I use a rabbet joint most often in drawer making. I even have the 24” omni jig from porter cable. It is just tedius and time consuming to setup. So I usually save it for the nicer projects. I have had good luck with the rabbet joints, so a box joint should hold up even better than rabbets if done correctly.

View CaptainSkully's profile

CaptainSkully

1191 posts in 2282 days


#4 posted 01-07-2010 07:09 PM

Very nice! You can’t tell this is your first project. Didn’t you guys decide to build the base and get a fancy top made for it?

I no longer use biscuits. They actually caused me more alignment problems. Titebond II is stronger than the wood. Norm even talks about this in later episodes after spending years biscuiting table tops. I edge glued my 38” x 60” dining room table and was able to pick it up the next day with no problem. I’ve even tried to break the glue joint on the scap offcuts and it’s not happening.

As far as the drawers go, finger/box joints are plenty strong. We’re all obsessed with dovetails for some reason, but Stickley only used them once. Even non-woodworkers always look at the drawers. I used lock joints on the dresser I made.

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1832 days


#5 posted 01-07-2010 08:32 PM

Again, one comment may start a whole discussion but …. ;)

Biggest problem I face when gluing up edged glued boards is the slippery aspects of glue. The edges will glue up fine, no matter if you use biscuits or dowels. The strength is in the gap free edge to edge glue absorption (even stronger than a solid board) than the filler material used to keep the boards level with each other. I have a doweling jig I use (review here) but it would not do me any good if the edges were not flat against each other. As tooldad already stated, the purpose is more to keep the surfaces parallel and snug without the slide that glue can sometimes produce from the lubrication. So I would say that the spacing just depends on what you would need to keep them tight and parallel. Make sure you use cauls when edge gluing, it will save you much pain in the process.

Dovetails have an attractive look and do have a very strong bond but box joints should serve you equally well. Unless your kids/grandkids plan on attacking it with a sledge hammer, the box joints should last for years.

Great looking project. I wish my first forays looked half as good.

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#6 posted 01-07-2010 08:44 PM

Ok so I’ll go with finger joints for the draws and maybe buy a dovetail jig latter on.
Another question though is this. the plans call for three raised panel doors. I have no router table but I do have a router. is it possible to make them with a freehand router? Norm used the radial arm saw and a panel bit in the saw to make his door.
CaptainSkully we initially thought we were going to do a stone top but we have decided to go with a wood top. We’re going to paint the base and stain the wood top for a kind of country effect.
I did some cutting boards for Xmas and got a feel for different woods and so I am looking forward to going to pick wood for the top.

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1832 days


#7 posted 01-07-2010 09:43 PM

The router bits typical for a raised panel should only be used on a router table. The bits are just too large for handheld router work. There are methods to create raised panels on the tablesaw and if that looks too involved, you can always create the panels without making them raised fairly easily on the tablesaw if you have a dado blade set. Those would probably be your best options at this point.

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View stefang's profile

stefang

13530 posts in 2057 days


#8 posted 01-07-2010 11:02 PM

Those finger joints if properly done will last at least as long as dovetails and they look good on both sides.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#9 posted 01-08-2010 08:31 AM

just finished putting the face frame on. it’s assembled with half lap joints. first time doing them for me.

View CaptainSkully's profile

CaptainSkully

1191 posts in 2282 days


#10 posted 01-08-2010 06:39 PM

Ah, cool. Have you thought about making a cutting board top?

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#11 posted 01-10-2010 05:34 AM

I got happy and brought my wife in to show her the progress and it didn’t take her two seconds to find the errors. Turns out I made a mistake because I got to confident. The plans have all four stiles on the face frame going all the way down to the floor. When I made the frame I didn’t refer to the plans, I just went ahead and made it. I ended them at the bottom of the bottom shelf. By the time the mistake was caught it had already dried. I had to cut small pieces and attach them to the existing work. The two in the center have braces which attach to the bottom shelf and the end two are glued to the side panels. I should have been more careful though.
How do I make a raised panel door without a router table?

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1832 days


#12 posted 01-10-2010 05:28 PM

Part of the process is learning how to correct your mistakes and it sounds like you are doing a great job. Here is a link to making raised panels on the tablesaw, you can get to it by clicking here. I hope this helps.

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#13 posted 01-14-2010 10:07 AM

So, my wife has been working on painting the unit and I have to say she’s doing a fine job. She’s been painting it a creamy white with a distressed look. The distressed look helpes to cover up the imperfections that I created. We went to HD to buy some hinges and handles for the unit. !This week I cut the door sides and tonight I cut the raised pannels using using the process posted by Dave ( Thanks Dave)
Here is a door before any sanding. First raised panel for me ,first door for me.

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2135 posts in 1832 days


#14 posted 01-14-2010 04:24 PM

The door looks real nice. Almost hard to believe it is your first one. I have seen pictures of distressing and it does give a nice antiquated look. Be careful on making it look too antique, people won’t believe you made it ;) Am glad that the link worked for you.

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Paul's profile

Paul

217 posts in 2175 days


#15 posted 01-21-2010 08:54 AM

Just came in from working on the top. It’s mahogany quarter sawn 5/4 thick. This is nice wood.
I had to join two pieces and I was concerned about the glue joint showing but it came out nice.
I would like to finish this with a low gloss finish almost matt finish. What do I use? How many coats and do I sand between coats?

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