|Project by mstenner||posted 1048 days ago||1043 views||5 times favorited||4 comments|
I had purchased this Southern Yellow Pine for another project that got canceled, so I was looking for something to do with it. My wife suggested a blanket chest, and I’m pretty happy with how it turned out.
The exterior dovetails are router-cut, but the ones on the “shelf” are hand-cut… my first on a real project and I’m quite satisfied with them. The bottoms of the chest itself and the sliding shelf are aromatic cedar. The chest bottom is ship-lapped, whereas the shelf bottom is a single glued-up panel. The runners for the sliding shelf have a decorative curve on the bottom side which was really just a silly detail. The lid has breadboard ends with a long tongue and three mortise & tenons. Each M&T is drawbored with glue on the frontmost. My only real screwup is that the lid stay screws go through the middle mortise and tenon, preventing them from floating. Hopefully, that’s close enough to the front that it it’ll be OK. The feet have glued-in blockes on the inside so that the part you see is about 1/16” off the ground.
I got the awesome hinges from Nathan’s Forge. My wife figured that if it was going to have cool hinges, they should be on the outside where they could be seen. His normal hinges are bent for placement on the inside, but he made some custom for me. No extra charge… just no returns. I was thrilled. The handles are from Van Dyke’s restorers, and I was a little disappointed with the quality. They needed to be cleaned up a lot, and the black finish came off. I had to fully clean them and blue them with gun blue. I gave them a thin coat of shellac for a lovely final finish. The stay is from Whitechapel. The stay itself is a beast and could probably take 100 times as much force as the screws can. Unfortunately, it requires flat-head screws and it came with pan-head. I had to order some unplated flat-heads and blue them as well.
The finish is boiled linseed oil on the outside, followed by shellac on all of the SYP (inside and out). The cedar got no finish. I was worried that the BLO popped the grain too much on an already-in-your-face wood, but I’m getting used to it.
This was a fun project in which I did many things for the first time: panel glue-ups, hand-cut dovetails, BLO, breadboard ends, drawboring, not to mention that it’s my first chest. I’m very pleased with the result. Now, on to the next project!