Small Chest of Drawers

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Project by vakman posted 03-16-2012 09:55 PM 3427 views 2 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a small chest of drawers of 3/4”pine, with 3/8”cedar and 3/4” pine drawers. The drawers are through dovetailed front and back, and have cedar beveled-block handles.

The top and base of this piece are rebate joined and nailed through the top (three per side). Supports for the top and center drawer are bridle jointed (I think?) front and back, with a half-lapped connector between them (visible at the front).

Finish is three layers of tung oil finish with some sanding to 320 grit. No power tools.

Total dimensions: 10”x7.5”x12.75”h

Overall I’m pleased with the piece, but there were some problems I encountered:

- The cedar I used was 40 or so year old tongue and groove paneling, and despite being quite knotty, was also quite brittle, which was to be expected I suppose. It lead to a good amount of chipping which I was only partially able to repair using a glue/sawdust mix.

- The half-laps visible from the front, and the drawer handles, should have been better composed so that they related at least in width. But I wanted to use cedar for them, and I literally had nothing left from the one scrap piece I started with.

- Some addition to the piece, such as stout legs or a heavier base may have added to it by distinguishing top from bottom; as it is, it could be presented upside without being too visually different. That being said it’s currently being used for pens and other stationery, so using the drawers upside would be a messy reminder as to which way is up!

Thanks for looking, comments welcome.

-- - Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true. -

10 comments so far

View Martyroc's profile


2712 posts in 2178 days

#1 posted 03-16-2012 10:22 PM

Beautiful, the through dovetails visible on the drawer fronts give this piece a lot of character.

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View DocSavage45's profile


8430 posts in 2715 days

#2 posted 03-17-2012 12:23 AM

nice design and great execution

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View NormG's profile


5889 posts in 2876 days

#3 posted 03-17-2012 04:43 AM

Great chest of drawers, love the dovetails

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View AKAndrew's profile


53 posts in 2648 days

#4 posted 03-17-2012 05:38 AM


View Josh's profile


1226 posts in 2442 days

#5 posted 03-17-2012 04:47 PM

I love those through joints. You can SEE the quality.

-- Tree, wood, and box lover from Pennsylvania

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 3428 days

#6 posted 03-17-2012 10:36 PM

Nice work

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View ChuckV's profile (online now)


3083 posts in 3399 days

#7 posted 03-17-2012 10:49 PM

That looks great. You included some very nice touches.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View AaronK's profile


1497 posts in 3337 days

#8 posted 11-10-2012 03:29 PM

nice. i really like those through mortises as a way to construct drawer boxes.

View vakman's profile


301 posts in 2276 days

#9 posted 11-13-2012 12:22 AM

Thanks, they do feel a bit over engineered though…1/2” stock would have been more appropriate than 3/4” for this piece, but what can you do.

-- - Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true. -

View AaronK's profile


1497 posts in 3337 days

#10 posted 11-13-2012 02:26 AM

yeah, i agree, but its ok :)

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