Up early, I got a little done this morning before work. I tested 2 stains from my small stock pile on some scrap poplar, the same stuff I used in this rolling base.
That’s Minwax “Golden Pecan 245” on the left, and “Red Oak 215” on the right. The pecan is less saturated than the online sample. The red oak is much less red, and much more like chocolate, but I like how it makes the poplar sort of look like a hardwood. I’m tentatively going to use that for everything. Though I would appreciate something like “Pickled Oak 260” for the cabinet, and “Ebony 2718” for the drawer front, I don’t think a tiny rolling stand for the planer is worth buying more anything. This project has been all about using up stuff I already have. The only purchase will be the 4 carriage bolts needed to mount the planer to the base. I don’t have any long enough.
I hand-cut some small pieces of scrap poplar previously ripped from the edge of a plank, sanded them up a bit, drilled some countersunk through-holes, and then used some stacked pieces of wood to get them sticking up past the face frame’s bottom by 1/4”, all automatically. I clamped, drilled some starter holes in the face frame, and drove in the screws.
They were too tall – the drawer front (behind the face) banged into them, so I actually used my Buck Bros. 6” block plane from Home Depot to shorten them. I’m terrible with planes, and it’s not the best plane, and not set up very well. I don’t yet know what I’m doing, but I’ve watched lots of online videos about their use, read up for awhile now, off and on, and I did sharpen the blade awhile back in the WorkSharp3000. It worked out pretty well. It’s certainly not pro work – not even close – but I got them how I needed them pretty quickly. I can imagine really liking planing with a proper, and properly-tuned plane.
Here’s the top one, seen from the inside. I just held the camera through the drawer hole and pointed it back at me:
The stops work, and the drawer stops pretty close to flush. Sanding the entire front (drawer and face frame) helped, and cleaned up some dings, but I gave up on perfection. The drawer slides aren’t accurate enough to permit true perfection every close anyway.
I’m going to stain it today, and hopefully have enough time (8+ hours) to varnish it tonight. We’ll see. I’d like to be able to slap a handle on the drawer, bolt on the planer, and tuck it under the workbench tomorrow, early, so I can be on to the next thing ASAP. There’s still so much in my project queue, most of it shop upgrades, mods, and reworkings just so I can get to the real stuff at last.
-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator