I have completed the base assembly finally. The stretchers and legs are permanently attached using the drawbore technique. I still have to cut the pins flush and chamfer the edges. I made dowels from an oak board using a dowel plate. What a forearm workout! Other than assembling the base, I have been getting a game plan together for the top and face vise.
The next thing that I need to do is prep the boards for the top. I have cut the boards a little over 6ft. long and will begin hand planing them this week. I looked at the boards this evening and only a couple seem to have significant twist. I am thankful that I had the foresight to get extra boards for instances like this. I should have more than enough to build the top. Once the top is built and everything is set in place, I will be building ashelf into the bottom stretchers for storage of hand tools.
The face vise screws decision is still up in the air. I am beginning to think that I should make the vise screws myself. I am feeling the pressure to get this completed because I want to move on to other “ideas” that I have, but I want to take my time and do it right. I think that by making the screws myself, I will be learning another woodworking skill. Only time will tell.
Well, that’s what has been going on in my shop so far. I have been putting together a post that I will post at the end of this series with tell all pictures and mistakes that I have made for the education of others. Here is my advice for newbies like myself. “Do not try and cut a 5/8 mortise with a 3/8 mortising chisel.” I only have a 3/8 chisel and have been building this bench with only hand tools except for ripping boards on the table saw. I didn’t want to buy the chisel since I already had the 3/8 one. This was a bad idea. It is super time consuming to tune the mortises if done like I did. Now I know better! “Do as I say, not as I do.”
-- A life of leisure and a life of laziness are two things. There will be sleeping enough in the grave. ~Benjamin Franklin