|Project by balidoug||posted 05-14-2012 02:29 PM||1510 views||1 time favorited||11 comments|
Opening Credits: Special thanks to RGTools whose excellent advice and patience got me through a serious case of brain freeze. Anything you approve of in pic 5 is because of him; the mistakes are mine.
This is not a blanket chest, of course, but it was when I started planning on building it almost two years ago. I don’t have a lot of wall space for storage in my shop; because I don’t have a lot of walls. Two sides: glass doors and windows; Two sides: the roof tops of Banjar Pekandelan. The beginner ‘how to” books I started with all had a blanket chest as a good starter project, and I figured that would be a good shop storage project. Except I needed something stackable. And to get at a blanket chest I’d have to move whatever was on top of it. So I came up with this instead.
My “model” was the bottom part of a secretary I picked up in India back in the ‘80’s, minus all the fancy bits, and with completely different dimensions, and a few more bits of brass – an idea I got from some other stuff I saw in India. I figured once I worked out how to do the bottom part I could add layers, or, if not, do the bigger thing all together.
The planks were hand milled from some rather twisted 1 ½ inch planks of teak. Just about when I got the milling done I found Chris Schwartz (occasionally – and not very kindly – referred to in this site as “The” Schwartz)’s blog on Campaign Style, which put a name to what I was working toward. It also changed the joinery plan. The original was a bit like the “feathers” project (op cit), but I went instead with half blind dovetails on the bottom and rabbeted full blinds on the top.
The brass work stopped me cold. I honestly had no idea how to proceed, and could not find anything on the web how to cut a mortise for a brass drawer pull. A mistake meant ruining the board, and milling a fresh one. RGTools came up with some great suggestions and advice which helped me work through the problem, and also got me thinking about advice in general (refer to A1Jim’s post on advice and my recent comment if you care or are curious). In any case, RG, I hope this meets with your approval but if not, any flaws are mine alone.
When the carcass of the chest was done, a hurricane broke out in the Indian ocean and hit Australia. It had quite an effect on our weather here. Did I mention my shop is a little shy of walls? Well for 10 years that space in our house has been as dry as anywhere on an Island just south of the equator can be, but that night the rain came in horizontally. When the box dried it was a tad out of square. Heroic efforts to correct the problem were for naught. The wood wanted to go that way.
Stuff I leaned on this build:
10. They were lying when they said getting it square is more important on bigger projects. It’s WAY more important.
9. A new joint: Rabbetted double blind dove tail.
8. Check for fit often.
7. One way to chop a mortise for a brass drawer pull
6. I like the name Echo and the Bunnymen better than I like their music.
5. The back does more than keep the wind from blowing through.
4. Check for fit often.
3. Do not glue runners whose the grain runs perpendicular to that of the side.
2. Check for fit often.
And the number one thing I learned:
1. “Oh well; it’s only a shop project” is one lame a?s excuse.
Made by hand
-- From such crooked wood as that which man is made of, nothing straight can be fashioned. Immanuel Kant