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Forum topic by David Schwarz posted 02-17-2018 05:16 AM 2938 views 0 times favorited 37 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


02-17-2018 05:16 AM

With machine restoration (temporarily) behind me, I’ve turned my attention to THE wardrobe closet. To be honest, probably far more chosen to chew than I was ready to bite. But now here I am and forward I must go. My intention with this post is to only ask two questions – I’ll try to save the epic journey for the more appropriate blog.

So the beginning seems humble enough – build a set of three modular drawer frames, with three drawers per frame – and nine drawers total if my elementary schooling remains intact. Here is/was the SketchUp virtual model that got this all started:

And from that model I now have this:

Question number one – so that I can now be more conversational in my woodworking wanderings, I would be grateful if someone could share with me how to refer to the various components highlighted by the four colored arrows.

With that little bit behind us, I present question number two and the primary focus of this post. I used a combination of sliding dovetails and box joints to assemble everything. My joints are satisfactory, but not perfect, with dovetails overhanging where they will need to be flush – the same being true for some of the box joints. Here ’s an up close and personal of the aforementioned victims:

My question then is what the best method will be to make everything on the face flush. The drawers will be inset walnut faces, so I want to show off these joints – desire obviously exceeding my current skill level.

So, do I sand by hand, with a dedicated machine (and what might that machine be), or do I use a hand planer (scared to death of this option – bad childhood memories litter the road traveled by a hand planer). Seriously though, any combination of the above (or other) are fine – I’m simply seeking the advice of those more knowledgeable that have traveled these roads before me.

Thanks in advance for your help :-)

David

-- I make trees cry.


37 replies so far

View jonah's profile

jonah

1911 posts in 3496 days


#1 posted 02-17-2018 05:23 AM

You can easily sand those flush with a random orbital sander. Start with 80 or 100 grit and work up to 150-180.

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 3845 days


#2 posted 02-17-2018 05:29 AM

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

12430 posts in 2577 days


#3 posted 02-17-2018 06:10 AM


Question number one – so that I can now be more conversational in my woodworking wanderings, I would be grateful if someone could share with me how to refer to the various components highlighted by the four colored arrows.

- David Schwarz

This will be interesting, I bet you get a lot of different answers. Never having seen anything built this way, I checked Illustrated cabinetmaking and there was nothing helpful there so I went with my first impression. The purple I would call a rail because it’s roughly equivalent to a dresser rail. Green = stile or post because it’s a vertical support piece. Blue, an apron if a top is attached or a stretcher if none. Red = header. There may be architectural terms that are a better fit.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 3845 days


#4 posted 02-17-2018 06:21 AM

Your construction methods are unorthodox
in that traditional casework wasn’t made
as skeleton frames because it had the purpose
of keeping stuff like dust and vermin out.

In any case, the frame under a drawer is called
a web frame. Again yours are unorthodox
because you’ll presumably be using drawer
slides. Sometimes thin dust panels are fitted
in the web frame. I suppose they kept dust
from sifting down onto costly linens in lower
drawers.

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David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


#5 posted 02-17-2018 03:12 PM



Your construction methods are unorthodox
in that traditional casework wasn t made
as skeleton frames because it had the purpose
of keeping stuff like dust and vermin out.
- Loren

Sorry Loren – this is always the risk one takes when posting without all the details. Here is an earlier rendition of what everything will look like assembled:

This project is to be constructed primarily from maple and walnut. The design (I claim all responsibility for it’s unorthodox nature) is my attempt to be as efficient as possible with the wood purchased. When all is said and done, nothing will be “open” to the elements. At least that’s the plan.

David

-- I make trees cry.

View David Schwarz's profile

David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


#6 posted 02-17-2018 03:17 PM



You can easily sand those flush with a random orbital sander. Start with 80 or 100 grit and work up to 150-180.

- jonah

Thanks Jonah. My fear with any sanding approach is rounding edges where I want to maintain perfect 90 degree angles. The secondary concern is losing my flat surfaces as I sand. Your skills are likely more refined than mine – I still struggle to keep everything on a linear plane when I break out sand paper. Seems I’m always taking more off the outer edges of any project I tackle. That’s what compelled me to consider a hand planer.

David

-- I make trees cry.

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

2608 posts in 1585 days


#7 posted 02-17-2018 03:22 PM

You could use hand planes to make everything flush. For the dovetailed horizontal pieces, probably would have been easier before assembly or make the dovetail groove a little deeper so it is flush. You could use a chisel for the box joints. Another option is a belt sander.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5086 posts in 2549 days


#8 posted 02-17-2018 03:27 PM

I would make those joints flush with a block plane. As far as terminology goes, the verticals are stiles and the horizontals are rails. I’m going to call the the front to back member, the blue arrow, a stretcher.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View David Schwarz's profile

David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


#9 posted 02-17-2018 03:27 PM



Probably would have been easier before assembly or make the dovetail groove a little deeper so it is flush.

- Lazyman

Couldn’t agree more. The backstory is long but the short version is that everything was more or less flush during dry fitting, but some of the sliding dovetails were too tight and hindsight on the best way to keep things flush – rather too late :-(

David

-- I make trees cry.

View David Schwarz's profile

David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


#10 posted 02-17-2018 03:31 PM



I would make those joints flush with a block plane.

- bondogaposis

Do you have any recommendations perhaps regarding manufacturer and model? I gravitate towards well built – preferably in the US. I’m not a xenophobe, but I’ve had enough Chinese manufactured products to know that those are best reserved for projects where there will be limited use to solve an immediate problem.

I won’t say that money isn’t an issue, but I do understand that you get what you pay for.

David

-- I make trees cry.

View Hermit's profile

Hermit

210 posts in 1523 days


#11 posted 02-17-2018 03:33 PM

I’m no expert but couldn’t you tack or clamp scrap pieces on top and or bottom to support the random orbital? Seems like it would work to me so you wouldn’t get the roundover.

-- I'm like the farmer's duck. If it don't rain, I'll walk.

View David Schwarz's profile

David Schwarz

101 posts in 415 days


#12 posted 02-17-2018 03:44 PM



I m no expert but couldn t you tack or clamp scrap pieces on top and or bottom to support the random orbital? Seems like it would work to me so you wouldn t get the roundover.

- Hermit

I think that’s a fantastic idea! I had a similar thought for the planer, but hadn’t considered the approach for a sander. Wondering if anyone else has ever tried to do this? As a concept, seems it should work – as long as you can keep the reference material locked in place.

David

-- I make trees cry.

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

2422 posts in 1420 days


#13 posted 02-17-2018 04:00 PM

You could take a similar approach with the scrap pieces and use a router with a bushing (just a thought)

View jbay's profile (online now)

jbay

2859 posts in 1097 days


#14 posted 02-17-2018 04:05 PM

If your not good with a hand plane, then I would use a sanding block and some manual labor.
I would use a 100 grit sanding belt wrapped tight around a block of wood.

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 3845 days


#15 posted 02-17-2018 04:07 PM


Your construction methods are unorthodox
in that traditional casework wasn t made
as skeleton frames because it had the purpose
of keeping stuff like dust and vermin out.
- Loren

Sorry Loren – this is always the risk one takes when posting without all the details. Here is an earlier rendition of what everything will look like assembled:

This project is to be constructed primarily from maple and walnut. The design (I claim all responsibility for it s unorthodox nature) is my attempt to be as efficient as possible with the wood purchased. When all is said and done, nothing will be “open” to the elements. At least that s the plan.

David

- David Schwarz

I didn’t mean to scold you. I think it’s cool. It’s
just built in such a way that naming the parts
is a little challenging.

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