|Project by JWF||posted 07-08-2012 07:46 PM||1057 views||1 time favorited||2 comments|
Ever have one of those projects where nothing seems to go right? This was one of those.
This is actually the fourth high chair I’ve made like this. Way back when I made one from plywood using a pattern; one of those where you cut everything from a single sheet and you wind up with all those lovely plywood edges. After I had started really getting interested in woodworking some friends had a baby and I decided to make them a high chair. Didn’t want to do it in plywood so I used the same basic pattern but built it from oak. I used half lap joints for the side assemblies. Then I wound up with a couple of nieces so I made two more using the half lap method.
Along comes my grandson and of course I have to build him a high chair. I take my time picking the boards, getting some nice rift sawn oak so the grain is linear, thought that would match the lines of the high chair. Cut a bunch of half laps and it’s all CRAP. Too low, too high, all CRAP. Very not happy. Fine. Start over with butt joints and dowels. Now I’ve used a lot of the nice rift sawn stuff so I wound up with one flat sawn leg (not shown in the pictures due to shame). Oh well, I’m the only one who will ever notice anyways. The festival of fun continued; cut the seat too narrow; had to make another panel. With the new seat cut to the right size the back was now too small. Make a new back. The only things that weren’t made twice were the three stretchers. Since we learn from our mistakes I figure I got a set of encyclopedias worth of knowledge out of this one.
So like I said, it’s oak (red). Dowel joints for the side assemblies and stretchers. The back is my first ever sliding dovetail. That was a festival of joy with absolutely no swearing involved (can you sense the sarcasm?). If you look at the last picture you can see the small crack I managed to generate. Oak is pretty tough but I’m a big boy who can push pretty hard when I’m frustrated. On the picture showing the balls my wife painted you can see where I screwed up trimming the dovetail on one side. Took me a few minutes to figure out how I managed to do that. Let’s just say angles can be really annoying. Finish is Behlen water based grain filler (dyed) and Minwax stain followed by several coats of spray can poly. My wife did the painting work. For all that this project was a pain I’m pretty happy with the end product and my grandson seems to like it.