|Project by TheGravedigger||posted 10-12-2010 03:01 AM||2816 views||2 times favorited||12 comments|
Okay, everybody, this one is posted at Rivergirl’s request. This is a rustic bench that I made a couple of months ago. It is simply a section of white oak log with four legs from the same trunk section. The top was made by taking a log half and splitting off a section to yield a flat top. This was done gradually with wedges and gluts so that I started with a fairly smooth surface. This was then quickly taken down with adze and scrub plane to a somewhat rough but level surface. The bottom surface received light adze work to remove any jagged surface. The twist comes from the natural twist of the tree.
The legs were then rived from the remainder of the log, and worked down to round on the shavehorse with drawknife and spokeshaves. The top was then drilled with 1 1/2” through mortises that were then tapered with a reamer. Tenons were shaped to fit this taper, and then the legs were driven VIGOROUSLY into their mortises. No glue was used, but the nature of tapered tenons is that “the more you sit, the tighter the fit.”
As a side note, all work was done by hand, with no power tools involved beyond the chain saw that first felled and segmented the tree. Yes, it is possible to drill a mortise that big by hand. To see the combo used, see my article at Little Good Pieces: http://littlegoodpieces.wordpress.com/2010/09/27/links-with-the-past/
The finish was simply Thompson’s Water Seal, as this bench was intended to sit out in the weather under a tree, in the location where you see it in the pictures. The “patina” as what happens after two months of sun, rain, and dirt. Almost looks like it grew there, eh?
-- Robert - Visit my woodworking blog: http://littlegoodpieces.wordpress.com