Radio Table #4: Changes Made From The Test Subject

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Blog entry by William posted 11-23-2012 12:43 AM 1813 reads 0 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Take Two Part 4 of Radio Table series Part 5: The Shelf Surfaces I Wanted »

I’ve started calling the first table I built my test subject, since I learned several things I didn’t like with the design I used. So, with this table, I’m taking steps to rectify some of those things.

On the first table, the legs were solid material, and I assembled it and the skirts all together at once. This required me to have to work very quickly. On this one, I’m making the legs a little differently and it is allowing me to work from the bottom up in stages. This allows me all the time I want to work with the wood without having to worry about glue setting up on parts that I’m not even prepared to mess with yet.

As I said, the legs on the first table were solid material. Even though they were over two inches square, they seemed less rigid than I thought they would. I know this had something scientifically to do with grain direction, but it doesn’t matter on this table since I don’t have solid material thick enough to do these cottonwood legs with solid material anyway. I decided to take advantange of the lack of siolid material and redesign the legs altogether. The photo shows the bottom of one of the legs. The inside pieces run the whole way up. The overlapping pieces are the spacers under and in between the shelves. This allows the grain to run so it adds strength. After doing it, I honestly believe these are much stronger than the solid legs.

With the legs glued up like I’ve done them, it all works together just like the solid legs on the first table. The inside pieces attach to the insides of the skirts. These are, at the moment, held with glue and brad nails. Later, after adding stretchers in between them, they’ll be there permenantly. You’d have to rip the skirts apart to get the legs to move out of the proper position.

Here, you can see what I meant by working from the bottom up. The bottom spacers and bottom skirt are on. Next I can add the next set of spacers and the top skirt.

Like so.
Any of you who read my post on the first table know that this is where I ran into glue issues on that one. I’m happy to report that I’ve had none of those issues on this one. I was also happy that things are so tight that I had to forcefully push the top skirt down over the legs. That lets me know that everything is coming together as tight as I’d planned on this one being.

Next I added runners for the drawer to ride into. I put strips to hold the drawer on the bottom and sides. Although the drawer will only be able to go in one way anyhow, I thought this will help keep it straight. I originally thought about metal drawer slide. I have a couple of sets around the shop somewhere. I made up my mind though that I wanted to use as little metal hardware as possible. So the only metal hardware it’ll have will be the knobs.

To attach the runners to the skirt, it is glued and brad nailed directly to the legs. Also, I added blocks under the runners on the front and back insides of the skirt. This may be overkill for support, but I know my wife. It’s not a matter of if she’ll test the strength of the drawer runners, but when.

And of course the drawer has finger joints. Or box joints if you wish. Or zipper joints as my wife called them. To not do so would just be absolutely wrong, in my humble opinion.

Of course that you seen is just the drawer casing. I have a special idea for the drawer facing. You’ll just have to wait and see what it is. I don’t like revealing too much until I make sure it’ll work.


14 comments so far

View patron's profile


13609 posts in 3370 days

#1 posted 11-23-2012 12:59 AM

looks like you are finding ways
to improve the design and build

which is what this is all about
for us woodworkers

coming along just fine

i’m guessing
a whole line of zipper joints
across the drawer front

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2871 days

#2 posted 11-23-2012 01:07 AM

The drawer facing has nothing to do with finger, or zipper joints. I promise.
Actually, what I have in mind, I think you’ll appreciate even more than most people would. I can’t wait for you to see it, if I don’t mess it up.


View patron's profile


13609 posts in 3370 days

#3 posted 11-23-2012 01:10 AM

fair enough

i wont look
till you finish it

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 2642 days

#4 posted 11-23-2012 01:38 AM

looking good William ,cant wait for the next one

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View JL7's profile


8667 posts in 2994 days

#5 posted 11-23-2012 01:39 AM

Ahhhh….Revision B…....very well then.

Looks like some good changes to help the overall design…....also wondering if your wife reads your posts!? Sometimes honesty only goes so far!

Looking good William….......maybe you could incorporate the zipper joints on the legs also and carry the effect top to bottom…...or in this case, bottom to top…....

-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View DamnYankee's profile


3301 posts in 2591 days

#6 posted 11-23-2012 01:44 AM

Cant wait to see the finished project

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2871 days

#7 posted 11-23-2012 02:45 AM

Thank you all. I’m glad someone enjoys reading the ramblings of a crazy man.

Patron, it’ll be shown before it is complete. I hope you look then.

Eddie, it’ll be at least Saturday before another post. Tomorrow we are having our Thanksgiving dinner. Today my wife has worked too many hours. I’ll be glad when she’s home.

Jeff, she doesn’t read my posts here, but I wouldn’t say nothing I wouldn’t say in front of her. She already knows about the table though. I gave up long time ago keeping projects secret from her. It’s just impossible to do when she comes to the shop on a daily basis.

Yank, it will be a bit on the finished project. I didn’t have enough darker wood like my wife wants for this, so I’m making it out of cottonwood. After everything else is done, I’m going to stain it with Minwax Dark Walnut before putting a clear finish on it.


View DIYaholic's profile


19623 posts in 2704 days

#8 posted 11-23-2012 04:54 AM

It’s good to see the design changes that make it a better, stonger and an easier build. I also like the drawer addition. Your progress looks good and I’m glad the glue up is being more cooperative!

BTW: I enjoy your ramblings, even the sane ones!!!

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2833 days

#9 posted 11-23-2012 01:31 PM

No matter what or how you do it, you do a fantastic job.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2871 days

#10 posted 11-23-2012 02:52 PM

Thank you both.
Roger, you say that because I don’t post the worst of the worst of the screwups.
Randy, you ever find sane ramblings from me? That either means that you know something I don’t, or you’re as crazy as I am.


View luv2learn's profile


2769 posts in 2331 days

#11 posted 11-23-2012 05:03 PM

Hey William, in my shop making a prototype (test subject) of something is just normal :). I like it when you post not only your successes but also your not quite so successes. We benefit from your experimentation :).

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View Dave's profile


11429 posts in 2868 days

#12 posted 11-24-2012 04:20 PM

Each time I do something I learn from the past mishaps and modify the next on accordingly. Work in progress William. Good stuff.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

View William's profile


9949 posts in 2871 days

#13 posted 11-25-2012 02:10 PM

L2L and Dave, thanks for your comments.
I make too many “test subject” I think. I’m going to have to start labeling all my project TS1, TS2, TS3, etc. etc.
Ya’ll know the main reason I’m redoing this one, for my wife, but the truth of the matter is the problem goes much deeper than that. I never seem to be happy with anything I build. Therefore, as soon as I get a project complete, I am already thinking of ways to make it better. So anytime I build something over, it’s usually to include improvements, only to get done and realize there is even better ways to make it better.
So that makes everything a test subject. One day I’m going to build something that I am 100% happy with. Of course, I know that when that happens I’ll probably kick the bucket soon thereafter. There won’t be a reason to continue when I can’t find a way to make something better.

I was hurting too bad when I came in last night to post. I went straight to bed. So, next installment coming shortly.


View Dave's profile


11429 posts in 2868 days

#14 posted 11-25-2012 03:40 PM

You are a perfectionist. As well as I am.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

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