As I reported on my last project http://lumberjocks.com/projects/24395 my boxes are mostly all going out the door at Christmas time. It’s tough to see the little ones go, but it gives me ample opportunity to have some fun making more of them!! I need two right off the bat for what I like to call “Pocket Garages”, one for at work, one for at home. With one already made, I started the second one last night…
For about two hours, give or take, I stared at this piece of poplar, trying to figure which way to lay it out. The small knot troubled me… for the optimum lay-out, it would lie precariously close to the joints…I also encountered a problem that I’ve seen before. The Glue-up of this Drawer side is canted, not parallel to the sides. I’ve gone ahead and worked with it that way before, but it gets really “hoopy”! My eyes and mind contrive to try to convince me that my markings are all wrong, because they’re not parallel to the grain… very disconcerting… After two hours, I ultimately decided to straighten this piece out in relation to the glue line, for sanity’s sake, and to move forward and not worry about the knot because, hey, this is Just for Fun, right?! So this morning I began by ripping a new side line with the Scroll Saw
It’s a perfect day for shop work!! Snowstorm outside, toasty warm inside and lest anybody thinks I’m a Scrooge, there’s even a little touch of Christmas inside the Shop…
Anyway, after establishing a straight edge it was off to the Table Saw for some milling action. The Scroll sawn cut was in the waste section of the piece and I began by cutting the actual “bottom of the box” cut. Then I used the first box to gauge the height of the second
After that, I simply plowed out some dadoes on either side to accept the eventual panels. No “New” news there…
Then I cut them to length. The overall length was about 24 1/2”. I’ve heard of the Golden ratio but don’t know the first thing about it, so out of sheer funk I decided on 7 1/4” X 4 3/4”. Times two, for the four sides, which totals 24”...
Then begins the quiet time, when i plot out and arrange the finger or box joints. First the spacing
which I do with my usual “tilted ruler” method. I tilt it to any 1/4” markings on the end of the piece, and tilt it one more 1/8” to allow for my parting cut, top from bottom.
Mark the depth of the fingers, using the pieces themselves, then mark the Dado cutouts (or rather Do Not cutouts!) a new part of the procedure for me…
And finally I draw the Finger spacings in the appropriate places
This is just eyeballed. It’s only vital that each abutting joint is correctly matched. To that end, after marking waste from want
I “Leapfrog” the sides to get the two ends in the middle and mark them in the same fashion
Are you bored yet?! LOL The Fun is just beginning!! Its time to cut the fingers, hopefully on the wood and not on my hands… First a little Drill Press action, to give myself some playing room
Then its off to the Scroll Saw, cut down one side, clear the “Bottom” of the cut (with the help of the maneuvering hole), back out, and cut the other side.
This might seem time or labor intensive but takes seconds per cut out. Doing both ends of each side takes about 6-7 minutes. After I do two sides, I take a file and clean out the matching ends and Voila!!
I continue working around the sides until, well, until I run out of sides!!
And so, to recapitulate, I went from last night’s two hours of plotting, to this afternoon’s reality…
Oops!! The one on the right is turned the wrong way, but it fits the right way and that’s what’s important!
Stay tuned for another of my poor attempts at humor and narration in the next episode of “Just for Fun”!! :)
-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.