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Halflap blanket chest. Panel ideas

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Forum topic by JSB posted 03-31-2013 09:59 PM 1289 views 3 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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JSB

684 posts in 735 days


03-31-2013 09:59 PM

Topic tags/keywords: halflap blanket chest

Hello all.
I have been building the same repetitive pocket hole blanket chest for a few years now. I’m honestly getting tired of using pocket hole screws and have been switching to halflap joints a lot lately. I find them to be as fast if not faster to cut and construct compared to a pocket hole joint. They are also proven to be one of the strongest joints. So here’s what I have been doing previously:

It’s a pocket hole skeleton with 1/4” ply glued to the insides and a 3/4” plywood base secured with pocket holes. To cover the exposed plywood end grain on top there is a lid base (thats what I call it anyway) which is where the hinges are actually secured to.

My goal is to make a complete halflap and dado blanket chest with the only metal being the lid hinge. Here’s what I have so far. The skeleton is complete 1-1/2”x2-1/2” stock joined with halflap joints and the side assemblies join to the front and back by a 3/4” deep by 1-1/2” dado. During assembly I will insert a 3/4” floating panel into a dado on all pieces to form the floor.

I am a bit undecided on how to form the panels. I could do the same 1/4” ply glued to the inside but then I would have to add the lid base as before to hide the plywood edges. I want to try something a bit different though.

I thought about making a dado with a slot cutter on all the pieces to hold floating panels but that sounded like a nightmare for assembly combined with the halflap joints. Or would it be easy?

Another thought is to simply use a rabbeting bit and glue in panels from the inside like a picture into a frame. I understand your not supposed to glue panels in because of wood expansion and contraction but before I learned this I glued a few projects this way and they are 100% fine a few years later. This option would keep The halflap joinery completely exposed visually, which I like.

I know the simple route would just do a tongue and groove construction with floating panels and call it a day but I want to experiment a bit. I like the exposed look of halflap joints and I like the idea of shifting away from mechanical fasteners and more to wood joints. I also believe a complete halflap chest with everything glued into place will be stronger than a T&G floating panel construction. Have any thoughts or opinions?

-- Jay - http://www.jayscustomcreations.com or http://www.woodworkingwithsketchup.com


6 replies so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

14210 posts in 995 days


#1 posted 03-31-2013 10:18 PM

I like the inset panels best. I think gluing them in would work for it.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

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gfadvm

10888 posts in 1347 days


#2 posted 04-01-2013 01:55 AM

Rabbet the frames and glue the ply panels would be my choice. That ply shouldn’t move so glueing should work fine.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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JSB

684 posts in 735 days


#3 posted 04-01-2013 02:18 AM

Well I think I am going to go with the rabbet and glue in panel approach. Here’s what I am submitting for approval. I really like the exposed joinery.

-- Jay - http://www.jayscustomcreations.com or http://www.woodworkingwithsketchup.com

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Monte Pittman

14210 posts in 995 days


#4 posted 04-01-2013 07:45 AM

Be sure and post it. You do great on sketchup. I should spend a little more time with it.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

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hjt

776 posts in 1795 days


#5 posted 04-02-2013 04:37 AM

Nice stuff jay. Wish I had the time and skills as you to do this sort of stuff. Like the use of SketchUp you have used. I’m just starting to use it and find it to be a great help.

-- Harold

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JSB

684 posts in 735 days


#6 posted 04-02-2013 04:39 AM

I have a bit of helpful background for this sort of thing. I have a CAD degree where I used SolidWorks daily for a couple years. After learning SolidWorks, SketchUp was simple. Not as feature filled but absolutely great for woodworking. Have you checked out the “SketchUp for woodworkers” videos?

-- Jay - http://www.jayscustomcreations.com or http://www.woodworkingwithsketchup.com

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