Building an Arts and Crafts Writing Desk

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Blog entry by dskill posted 12-20-2011 04:11 AM 1493 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Several years ago I ran across an old book of Arts and Crafts style plans and copied the pages of the book containing the drawing (yes, just one drawing!) with dimensions and three paragraphs of instruction on how to build the desk. This past summer I finally purchased the rough quartersawn white oak and dimensioned it for the pieces of the project. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned (belatedly) from starting this project is that apparently even the casual hobbyist woodworker of 100 years ago was fairly proficient in the art of furniture building and cabinetry. This project is affording me a great opportunity to further improve my stub and through tenon skills. So far, I’ve been able to do them all without resorting to power tools. I’ve probably spent more time sitting and thinking (“bucket time”) about how to proceed than any other project I’ve ever attempted. So far I’ve only screwed up on one board, cutting the shoulders too close together. I’ll post a couple pictures later this week to show you all how many mortises and tenons there are in this project. While the original instructions called for a few plugged screws, I try to avoid metal fasteners at all costs wherever possible, so in this case I’m substituting biscuits for screws. More later!!!

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