Was able to scrounge up some time to officially start making sawdust for this project.
I started by ripping the blanks for the drawer parts from the 1/4” cherry. Even though most of the drawer will be hidden most of the time, I wanted to crosscut the parts to allow the grain pattern to flow around the drawer. I stacked the 2 blanks prior to cross-cutting to insure matching lengths:
I blue taped the ends of the blanks to help prevent chipout. The new box joint jig I made has a replaceable support to help prevent chipout, but unfortunately as designed it only supports the workpiece 1/4” the way up…which is the exact depth I’m cutting, so without some modifications, it was pretty much useless as is. I notched away enough material to allow it to be flush with the bottom of the workpiece, but I still wanted to provide some additional support, especially on 1/4” stock.
I dialed in the new box joint jig on some test pieces, which wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.
Here’s the 2 drawers dry fitted:
The joints sit just a hair proud, but will take those down during final sanding.
New skills/lessons learned:
- Learned how to make a box joint…first time ever and it was kinda exciting! Was reading in issue 181 of Wood magazine this weekend the findings of their wood joint torture test. According to the article the shear strength can be reinforced utilizing a brad nail in the edges of the end fingers. Based on the small size of these drawers and the fact I don’t want to chance splitting anything trying to reinforce the joint, I’ll probably count on the glued joint being sufficient.
- After working with the 1/4” cherry I’m debating on changing the design of the bottom to the full 1/4” vs. the original 1/8” I had in the design. I’m thinking the trade-off of extra strength vs. the exta 1/8” drawer depth is worth it. If anyone has any thoughts either way, or even if you think I should use cherry ply for the bottom instead, please, let me know your thoughts.
- Route the slots for the drawer bottoms.
- Sand and finish the seperate drawer pieces.
- Glue up.