Ronin Woodworking #5: Finishing my TSDC contest project (the drawer)

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Blog entry by spaids posted 06-02-2009 03:24 PM 1184 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Holey blog post! Part 5 of Ronin Woodworking series Part 6: The Sawdust Chronicles 30 Day Build Contest Winners! »

All thats left now is making a drawer. I have some oak on my rack but I also have some oak flooring that is plenty big enough for the small drawer.

That finish is very hard. Its “special” and you should resaw this stuff off before using it. Don’t run it through your jointer or planer. After I slice the finish off with my bandsaw, milling this stuff was very easy. I cut them a hair long and to the correct width.

These pieces are 1/4” thick. I’m going to join the drawer corners with a 1/4” box joint. I prefer using stock that is thin where appropriate. Thicker stock is easier to generate and work with but I always feel it looks too bulky when the material is thicker than necessary. Plus I don’t want the drawer to feel any heavier than it has to. I decided to use a box joint in the last day before I began work on the drawer. I’ve tried a box joint once before so I had the jig I made for those already. I’m new to woodworking so any joinery method is going to be a challenge and a learning experience. In the end I went with the box joint because it would be visible when the drawer is open. I have posted EVERYTHING I have ever done on lumberlocks, jigs included. This is my box joint jig.

I put some blue tape on the pieces to help with chip out. After every cut I stopped and used a scary sharp chisel to slice off the small fibers that were left by the cut. The tape would have a small flap with long connected wood fibers stuck to it. With out the tape these fibers could have been chipped/torn out during the cut. The dead blow on my table saw is there to adjust how tight the box joint is. You need to test the joint and then tap the jig left or right to get a perfect fit. I tried box joints in mulberry before. This time its oak. I don’t know if its the wood or that I have learned a couple things since my last attempt but these are my best joints to date.

By raising the dado stack I cut the fingers of the box joint a touch long. I did this so I could sand down the end grain after glue up for a glass smooth joint. And here is a test fit of the drawer before working on the drawer face.

By this time it is getting late and its the last day to finish this on time. That means no more screwing around with the camera! There was a small snag on the back corner of the drawer as I closed it. I didn’t want there to be any drawer guides on the side because you would see it. I realized that it needed something to let is shut smoothly so I ripped a narrow strip of oak and glued it in the center of the drawer box. Before attaching the drawer face I nibbled a small notch in the front and back of the drawer to ride on the oak strip. Now the drawer runs smooth and straight. I used business cards as spacers for the drawer face to get an even reveal all around the opening and carpet taped it temporarily. While it was taped on I drilled the hole for the knob. I removed the tape and glued the drawer face on now having the knob screw as an alignment pin. I tightened the knob on and put a clamp on either side of the face and let it dry.

All that was left was lots of sanding. More sanding than necessary but it doesn’t hurt. I used tongue oil to finish it. I cut the first coat with some mineral spirits and the wood really drinks it up. Tongue oil is a fool proof finish. You can’t put too much on and all you have to do is soak it. Wipe up all the excess and your done.

A detailed sketchup of this project is posted in the 3D warehouse as well as a couple other sketchups I’ve done.
Thanks for following my build blog.

-- Wipe the blood stains from your blade before coming in.--

2 comments so far

View SplinteredBoard's profile


59 posts in 3607 days

#1 posted 06-02-2009 03:29 PM

In true Fan fashion, you’re showing your Cardinals colors along with your box joint success. Good form!

-- Splintered Board Podcast - Woodworker Un-extraordinaire

View fito's profile


33 posts in 3421 days

#2 posted 06-02-2009 03:39 PM

great work, i liked. very very nice.

-- I Just Love Working With Wood.

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