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Nicholson Bench

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Blog series by mpmitche updated 08-02-2013 02:35 AM 11 parts 31614 reads 33 comments total

Part 1: Getting started

09-09-2011 01:11 PM by mpmitche | 5 comments »

Last night I started working on my workbench. I’m roughly following the Schwarz’s plan from his workbench book (which I really enjoyed). I only had a few minutes between other projects but had time to sharpen my xcut panel saw and then xcut the legs and end braces from BORG 2×12’s. Next will be to rip them down; I may need to sharpen my rip saw as well but at least it is a full length 5 ppi rip saw. The short xcut saw cuts well but a few more inches of length would ...

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Part 2: A ripping workout

09-14-2011 03:49 AM by mpmitche | 9 comments »

I worked on the bench some more tonight by ripping the legs and stretchers to width. I doesn’t look like much but here is my pile of finished work. It was quite a workout once you take into account that it was done like this. I’m not sure if I need to sharpen my saw better, add some sloped gullets, or just start lifting weights but it seems like it should go faster. I think I’ll try another sharpening before the next go if nother else it will take out a little of...

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Part 3: Legs Ready

11-04-2011 04:47 AM by mpmitche | 3 comments »

Tonight I finished getting all the legs ready for joinery. I started by flatting one face and taking out any twist. Some of the boards were pretty bad. The second face was then planed parallel to the first by marking the thickness. I don’t have much of a bench now (hence the build) and working the edges is difficult. I have better luck doing that after the glueup.After all 8 pieces were flatt on the faces they were glued together. Because the widths were not all the same I found t...

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Part 4: A short stop along the way

11-08-2011 03:40 AM by mpmitche | 3 comments »

Last night my frustration of trying to build a bench without a bench peaked. I have several nails driven into my current bench (just a piece of plywood on some shelves) that act as planing stops. They have bent over and several times the work jumped over them and scooted over the top damaging the bottom side. I decided to fix this issue before I did some serious damage to something. With my new drawknife and spokeshave I knocked out a few one inch tapered pegs and but a few holes in my be...

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Part 5: On a roll

11-08-2011 01:58 PM by mpmitche | 2 comments »

After I stopped working on my bench to build the planing stops I thought about some other things that needed to be done to move my project along quicker. I’ve been thinking about sharpening my rip saw again but have stalled it in my desire to work on the bench. Last night I found a finer file I picked up from Lie-Nielsen and touched up the saw. As I worked I could see that there were some area’s that I needed the work and as soon as I finished I gave it a test run. It melted t...

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Part 6: Tenons

11-13-2011 08:09 AM by mpmitche | 0 comments »

I’ve finished squaring the upper and lower stretchers for the legs and have been cutting the tenons using my favorite method. I cut the shoulders with a saw and then rive out the tenons to the gauge lines. After riving them any lumps are evened out with my rabbate plane.

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Part 7: Mortising

11-17-2011 12:09 AM by mpmitche | 1 comment »

I finished up the mortising on the legs. They were done by boring holes with a brace and 3/4” bit And then finished square with a 3/4” chisel. Dry fitting the tenons and checking for square and a good fit. And then dry assembly of the legs (2 pair).

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Part 8: Drawbore!

11-18-2011 02:26 AM by mpmitche | 2 comments »

Drawboring is one of my favorite activities in the woodshop. There is an element of danger to it I guess. Once the holes are drilled (the tenon holes about 3/32 offset from the mortise holes) I line all my parts up. This time I cut the 3/8” pegs from a dowel instead of making my own and widdled one end on each peg down to about a 1/4”. Once everything is ready (glue optional but I went ahead and used it this time) I glue up the tenons and assemble the joints. Once...

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Part 9: Boring Aprons, and getting her on her feet.

11-20-2011 04:51 PM by mpmitche | 4 comments »

Now that the legs are done I was able to 4S the aprons (I cheated and borrowed a planner from a friend) and then drill the holes on the front Apron. I glued and screwed the apron as was suggested in the Schwarz’s book that I am building this after. And here it is with both aprons on and lifted onto her feet.

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Part 10: The Top

02-04-2012 01:37 AM by mpmitche | 2 comments »

Over the last few days I was able to get the top on my bench mostly complete. I started by working one face of the boards with a jack plane to remove twist and flatten the boards. I broke down and dressed the second side with a power planner I borrowed from a friend. Once all the boards were dressed I laid them out on the table and planned the edges square and put a little spring in the boards. The spring allowed me to clamp up the assembly with only one clamp as I don’t...

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Part 11: Almost finished leg vise

08-02-2013 02:35 AM by mpmitche | 2 comments »

I’ve been using my bench for months now but never finished shaping the leg vise. I am working on a pin for the parrallel guide and decided I needed to shape the vise to prevent it from damaging the pin. Tonight I finished up all the shaping and got it mostly planned smooth. Who knows another year from now I might even get that wagon wheel vise installed.

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