Building a Cherry Queen Bed #2: The Footboard

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Blog entry by jonah posted 06-18-2016 04:43 PM 873 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Design Evolutions and Finalization Part 2 of Building a Cherry Queen Bed series Part 3: The Headboard »

I started with what I was sure was going to be the easiest part of the bed: the footboard. It’s pretty simple: two ~18” high 3 1/4” square posts with a taper on two sides and a ~58” rail.

After milling the parts, I laid out the mortises for the rail and made 3/4” wide, deep (1”) mortises to ensure the assembly is as strong as I can make it. I made the mortises with a router and the tenons on the table saw, as normal. Nothing major to report there. I did discover than my table saw fence had somehow come out of perpendicular to the table, though I’m honestly not sure how that happened. It’s not as easy an adjustment on my TS3650 as it would be on a saw with a true t-square-style fence, but eventually I got it sorted.

I decided to go with a 1” taper starting about an inch below where the rail sits. I cut the taper on the band saw and smoothed out the cut with hand planes. My smoother is in need of a sharpening and some adjustments, and I was too occupied to put everything away to sharpen/adjust it, so I just pulled out my #7 to smooth the legs. That went fine, and sometimes I actually prefer the longer, heavier plane no matter how delicate the work.

After I had the tenons fitting properly in the mortises, I started on the mortises for the bed hardware. I ended up going with a set of hook hardware from Rockler that a friend recommended. Based on the size of my rails, I went with the 4-inch set. I would have loved to use the 6-inch set, but my rails are only 5 3/4” wide so there wasn’t room for hardware that big on the end of them.

That’s a stock picture from Rockler, but that’s essentially what I’m going for. I made the mortises for the hardware in the posts with a chisel and a drill bit for the deeper part that the hooks sit in. After installing the hardware, I rounded over all the outside edges with a 1/4” round over bit.

Here’s the dry-fitted almost-finished product:

Now on to the headboard!

2 comments so far

View JimYoung's profile


218 posts in 1004 days

#1 posted 06-20-2016 04:54 PM

Looking nice.

What is your opinion of the “hook type” hardware? I’ve read elsewhere that it is a weak point since you are screwing into end grain. How long are the screws, and do you think this will be a problem?

Thanks for posting

-- -Jim, "Society is well governed when its people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law." -- Solon

View jonah's profile


687 posts in 2716 days

#2 posted 06-21-2016 01:17 AM

I haven’t finished the thing yet, but I think the hardware looks solid. You provide your own screws with the hardware, so I’ll probably use 1.5-2” screws for that. I used 3/4” screws for the hardware in the posts. The hardware is mortised into the posts and rails so it’s well supported underneath.

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