|Project by McLeanVA||posted 05-18-2009 04:32 PM||1855 views||5 times favorited||15 comments|
This is my first project working with a wood other than inexpensive pine from the big box stores. It was inspired by the many projects I have seen on here by my fellow LJ’s. It was modeled after a walnut nightstand on my wife’s side of the bed. It was constructed of 3/4” cherry with mortise and tenon, dowel, and biscuit joints. Without a tenon jig, a mortiser, a plane, or a drill press, this tested my patience and hand tool skills. What an amazing learning process. I learned a lot about the importance of tight fitting joints and how long it takes to pound out mortises by thumping a 1/4” chisel with the pad of my hand. My toddler’s rooms are above my garage and my wife put the smack-down on any hammering or power tools after bed time. It’s laughable, but forced me to take my time. I logged countless hours listening to late-night NPR on my shop radio while shaking the sting out of my digits.
The finish was 3 coats of Watco Danish oil (thanks poroskywood – LJ), sanding with 400 in between coats, 2 coats of rub-on poly (satin), sanded to 400 in between, a light misting of spray-on poly (semi-gloss), followed by a rubbing of paste wax on #0000 steel wool. The last step was rubbing the finish out with a terry towel. And I mean seriously rubbing. The result was a beautiful finish that brought the grain to life.
Notes for next project. Invest in a mortiser or drill press. Buy a dowel centering jig. Spend more time studying the grain patterns in mating pieces. Don’t be afraid to work with new woods.
And for those of you wondering why I didn’t add a drawer to this. Total truth… I was scared to bite off more than I could chew. I need to learn/practice dovetail joints and get my confidence up before I pile up expensive scrap wood.
I’m excited to start my next project. This site is packed to the pixel with inspirational projects from you all.
-- Measure, cut, curse, repeat.