Well, I thought this would only take one evening, but it was more like 3 evenings and a morning!
The hinges arrived from Lee Valley on Monday on time.
From past experience, I knew the #4 screws are a little small in diameter and were going to be too long for the lids. Last time I used #6, but they were a little big and I had to open up the countersinks to get them to fit. This time I went with #5 screws – 1/2 inch for the lid and 3/4” for the box.
Now that the hinges are on hand, I can cut the notch in the lid. I used a support to keep the lid level. Then slowly increase the blade height to the desired cut depth and do the same with the fence.
I then set up my ShopSmith as a drill press. It took a little jig work to get the lid to be level and allow a controlled depth of the drill bit. Since the bottom of the lid is the only square surface, I had to reference off of that.
I had enough room for the 1/2 inch screw, but I wasn’t going to take any chances. I filed the tip down to give a little extra clearance.
I also used a steel screw to drive into each hole first. These brass screws can break at the worst times!
I then scribed the hinge location onto the box.
After some careful chisel work, I had my hinge recesses cut. So far, everything is going smoothly. I was feeling like I might even get to the first coat of finish on Monday evening.
It was not meant to be…
The first time I got the screws in the box, the lid would not even close! The hinges had shifted to one side so much that the lid no longer lined up with the features on the box. It took some studying to understand that my holes were slightly out of position and that forced the hinges to the side.
I ended up going to bed wondering how to move the holes and end up with perfectly located new holes. The fit between the lid and box is really close.
The next morning (Tuesday), I realized I could try to shim the hinges back into place before I tried to move the holes. One thing I do is save every scrap no matter how small.
I took a thin strip and trimmed it to size.
After a couple test fits, I found that I needed two shims.
With the hinges held firmly in place, the screws settled into a more agreeable location. Now the lid would close, but there was too much binding to allow it close all the way. At least I could go to work knowing I had made progress.
Tuesday evening was spent dialing in the fit of that first lid. There are about 12 interfaces that can possibly bind. It took A WHOLE LOT of test fits to find the interferences. One trick I use is to lay a strip of paper in and see if it binds.
I finally got the first lid to close – well pretty good, there was a slight gap as the lid still would not close all the way.
I shifted my attention to the second box. I did a better job of getting the hinge mortise located, but I did not drive my steel screw in far enough and …
This is getting to be a long process. I chose to be thankful that I still had 3 screws that worked. I spent the rest of that night getting that lid to close – but it was another session of A WHOLE LOT of test fits and adjustments. In the end, it was the same as the first lid – I could push the lid shut, but it would spring back up a bit. There were still some areas that were binding on each lid.
Wednesday morning I needed to get to work early, so everything had to sit until last night.
There aren’t any pictures of the fitting process – it would just be the same picture over and over and over … with the slightest change in how far the lid closes.
Last night, I finally found the last interference – fortunately it was the same issue on both lids! At last some good luck.
I then turned my attention to the broken screw. I could have just glued the broken piece in place and relied on one screw, but I decided to drill out the broken piece with an oversize bit.
Then I went back to my scrap pile and shaped a fill piece.
The fix worked well. What I thought would be a couple hours of routine work turned out to be about 5 times that. But, in the end the hinges fit. I even had time last night to get 2 coats of sanding sealer on! It helps that it dries so quickly.
I do have some finish flaws to fix. Then I move on the the top coats and build up some gloss. I still need fabric floors and covers for the bottoms. One week to go!
-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive