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Building a dining side table
I started the
day by truing the edges of the stock on the jointer:
Here I'm cutting
the 2 boards that will form the outer edges of the top:
I then rip the
Lacewood boards down for the legs:
Then I rip 2 -
1/8" strips of Mahogany that will be the decorative
stripes that separate the 3 boards of the top:
At this point
I had to pause to think out the dimensions and
styling details of the leg design. I generally work out most of the
design in my head before I start work, but some of the finer
details need to be sketched before they become clear to me:
The sketch clarified that the 6 leg staves needed to be laid out
as 2 groups of 3, and that the foot would be straight rather than
angled as in the bench design. I also decided that the foot should
be 12" long, making it 2" shorter than the width of the top.
This would leave a 1" clearance on the floor for baseboard molding.
I cut the Walnut
feet to length and height:
The tricky part
is gluing up all 5 pieces of the top at once.
Here I am applying glue, and clamping:
I move on to sanding while the glue is drying.
hate sanding, but I love my sanding machine!
It is a very Zen experience to feed the parts through the machine
over and over using 220 grit paper until the surface is smooth and lustrous.
Here I am sanding the feet and legs:
My style of joinery
requires extreme precision in the thickness
of the parts that get assembled. I use a dial caliper to ensure
that the sanded legs are 1/2" plus or minus 0.002".
The sander can be set to remove as little as .002" in one pass.
After the glue
is dry on the assembled top, I scrape off the excess and hand plane
the excess mahogany stripe that I deliberately made oversize.
This small block plane is one of the few hand tools that I use!
I'm a power tool guy all the way -- it's just the way that I learned woodworking.
Besides, who needs to work up a sweat?
Then I square
off the ends and cut diagonal corners:
Since the boards
didn't glue up perfectly flat
I use 80 grit sand paper to flatten the surfaces of the top.
(I don't use a planer at this point since it would tear out the wavy grain).
I continue sanding
down to 320 grit. The beauty of the grain is reveled:
I rout a bevel
on all the edges, this is a typical Arts and Crafts edge detail:
A final sanding
with a random orbit sander and 320 paper:
Applying a first
coat of Tung oil and varnish:
Now the real beauty
of the wood shines through!
More coats of finish tomorrow, and work on the legs...