This is one of the most interesting parts of this build. Joining the angled drawer sides to the curved drawer fronts. As always I like to start from the end so you know where I’m headed. The first picture is a bottom view of the sides connected to the fronts with a half blind sliding dovetail spline.
So the question is how did I come up with this idea (not claiming originality here) and how do you get the two mortises to line up? My initial thought was to do an integral dovetail tenon, but I quickly realized it would be easier to do a loose tenon.
I did a lot of testing on scrap pieces to get the right combination of tenons and mortises. And I used two routers, one for the drawer sides and a smaller one for the fronts. As the pictures show I got lucky with the height clearance when cutting the fronts. The angle was ‘wide’ enough to allow unobstructed room above the router to complete the cuts.
You use the same router bit to shape the tenons as you do to cut the mortises.
And remember the bricks from previous chapters? Well I don’t have a picture, but I set up the fronts by positioning them at the edge of the table and holding them in place with a brick while I tightened clamps around the piece and then clamped the clamp to the table. Worked great.
For the drawer sides I built a jig angled so the flat part was level to the table. I don’t have a picture of the router, but I registered the fence against the left side of the jig and cut the mortise. I squared up the ends of the mortise with a chisel.
Notice how each spline and mortise stops about 1/2” from the top? I told you, half blind dovetails. This way they don’t show through when looking down at the finished drawer. Something I discovered when I was playing around with the model. The splines slide up from the bottom and are then trimmed to the shape of the drawer to accommodate the cabinet shelf upon which the drawer sits.
Here’s some shots of the glue up and the results from the bottom.
You will have to take my word for just how strong a connection this is. Or, maybe try it out for yourself. Next chapter I’ll show how I added the bottoms and finish the drawer assembly.
-- tim hill www.newcalshop.com