Sunday, January 5, 2014

Bremer Cabinet: Picking Up

Hey folks. I'm a bit behind on sharing this project, so I'm going to make basically a photo reel post to catch up!

Above we have some cabinet side doweling.

Then top and bottom doweling.

Once the carcass is dry-fit with some dowels, trim up the back to be flush and flat.
Here I'm using my lovely chair-scrape because the cabinet scraper was too clumsy for edge work.

Once the back was trimmed, I went to the router table to rough out a rebate for the back panel. Clean up the meeting of side and top/bottom with chisels.

Looks like I forgot to take a pic of shaping the top/bottom edges.
Then I made little slots or dados for partition splines. Pictured is for the drawer pocket vertical partition. I used the router table to make the dados in the sides for a horizontal partition.

Made mortises for the flipper-floppers. Small pilot hole for a screw and larger hole for a spring.

Mustn't forget holes for the levelers.

All the while, work on the doors was going on as well.
Here I'm trimming some "bake-ins" on the door substrates.

Assembling pieces of veneer for the doors.

"Pressing" the veneer to the door substrates.

Once out of the press, I worked some angles with the door edges.

And wrapping up with a little leg mock-up because I'm waiting for the mail to give me the hinges I need to get to pre-finishing the carcass!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Eva Lovisa Design Portfolio online

Greetings folks!
As some know, I have a great wife.
As fewer may know, she is a designer wife. She works with web / interactive design, branding, identity, and the list continues. She's darn good.
As even fewer may know, I have started a career path/journey in web development.
Eva designed a new website and I implemented it in code, which is to say developed it.
It is now LIVE at an internet near you!

I've spent the past number of months really diving into the development waters and learning to swim. This is why this blog has seen even fewer updates than before.
I'm not closing my shop door, but am currently not starting any spec furniture pieces. I am fully prepared and welcome commissions (and likely some pieces for the home/Eva).

Things will continue to change around here. I am not turning this into a dev blog, but someday down the road will move it to be a part of my combined professional personality site.

So, don't have a furniture need but do have some design / web needs? We can help you out!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Bremer Cabinet - The Next Chapter

Wow Hickory is hard. I knew it was hard but I didn't know it was this hard.
Also it tears. As soon as there is a dive to the grain "shhhh-crugh!" (is that was a tear sounds like?).
Looks like I'm going to reacquaint myself with the cabinet scraper on this one.

Since last time, I have been breaking down the rough lumber, picking what pieces go where, and bringing those close to dimension.
Using the planer was a painfully slow and loud process on a count of the Hickory's hardness.
While I was edge gluing bits to make up the carcass components I worked on the door bending form pictured above. I got a little carried away with the thickness of it, but I'm sure it wont deform under clamping pressure. One could get away with a much thinner form when using a vac press but I'm just going the mechanical route.
I got some sheets of 1/8" Baltic Birch clamped on the form to make the door substrates and moved on to working the main carcass pieces.

Here I'm checking and adjusting the inside of the top, bottom, sides for flatness to make solid tight joints. What I have in my hand is a wooden straight-edge.

Provided that you have stable wood, these are great tools! This kind of straight-edge is of a Japanese tradition, this particular tool was made by my bench-mate at IP, Daisuke Tanaka.
This one is made from amazingly tight grained Yellow Cedar, very stable. You can make them any size you want, and the wood edge wont mar your project. You just use one side as a straight edge, you check that against the other half for trueness, and use a hand plane to adjust. Might sound unfamiliar but they are very accurate.

finally for this installment I got to shaping the outsides of the sides. Being that this Hickory is a bit of a pain to work I tried to rough out the profile closely with a dado set on the table saw. Worked alright but my arms still got tired mighty tired from scraping, sharpening, scraping, sharpening, and scraping. In the end, it looks good.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Bremer Cabinet - a Start

Hello, it has sadly been a few months since last time!
This new project is one that has been in the air for a few months but have just got a real start on it.
This is a project for some good friends and their new addition to the family.

The Bremers were passed down a rocking chair that, I believe, Grandpa Bremer had been rocked in.
The chair was made in Red Oak and included scroll-ish design. They desire a table to go along side it that also acted as a storage piece.
What we've come to is a sort of genre bending cabinet.
It will be about 28" tall. Taller than a typical side-table but significantly lower that I would typically make a vertical storage cabinet.

It will have a bowed front and sides, also include probably a pair of drawers.

I chanced upon some Hickory aka Pecan. There were a few boards of nice clear planks, particularly clean for the species. Unfortunately all that was available was 4/4" stock, and not enough of the same selection for the whole cabinet. I picked up two more boards of a different nature that I thought matched.
Turns out they did not match each other. I had wanted to make solid doors, but looks like I am again forced into veneering the doors.
As I understand the names Hickory and Pecan are associated with different characteristics of the wood. "Hickory" being a more uniform "plain" variety and "Pecan" having more variation and contrast. In that case you could say that the carcass will be "Hickory" and the doors will be "Pecan."
Whatever the case may be I hope they look good together.

The pink tones in the Hickory should make it a compliment to the Red Oak chair. I think I will use some Red Oak for the little stand if I can find a nicely red piece.

Before I went to cutting veneer, I glued up a blank for my bending form. Hoorah!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Combo Amp Stand Photos

Why hello there again.
Certainly has been a while. I suppose late is better than never eh?
Here are a couple of photos of the little Amp Stand I made a little while ago.

Walnut, Wenge, Leather.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Combo Amp Stand Continues

  Continuing the Amp Stand. I'm shaping the end grain "terminals" a bit. I'm giving them a subtle three dimensional rounding. It will soften the overall appearance of the otherwise straight lined piece.

I've got the substrate set up, time to get those veneers in line.

I cut or splice the veneer in strategic spots and angles to best match color and grain when they are joined. I use my little jointer plane to shoot the edges straight and smooth to make the seam virtually disappear.

To join them I employ the bit of elasticity of painter's tape. Secure the tape to one "half" of the veneer and stretch it as you stick the tape to the other "half." Complete one side, paint a bit of glue on the edge of the 1/16th thick veneer (like a butt/edge joint), flip over and tape the other side. This way you have relative equal force pulling in on the veneer to keep the join planer.

Veneer work, and waiting, is going on while I'm finishing the first round of glue-up components. This time I'm using "orange" or unbleached shellac. A number of thin coats and a coat of fine wax on top.
Yes, I've grown found of certain bottles to hold my finishes, what do you use?

The veneer is ready to be applied but I just wanted to interject a brief bit about the substrate.
The main substrate I'm using is Baltic Birch plywood. I've applied some Poplar pieces to the perimeter. It's an old or perhaps "impractical" step to add these edges we call "bake-ins." What it does for me is to give me a solid wood edge to work with when planing and joining the edges. It works more easily, creates a stronger joint, and simply allows for higher quality results.

Alright, to the application of the veneer. Like in almost every case, I use white glue. To apply the glue to a relatively large surface I use a 4" brayer. That's an ink rolling/printmaking tool you can pick up at most "craft" stores.
You don't need a ton of glue, its not gravy. But a little extra is usually preferable to being too thin.

Glue both sides and don't forget the veneer! I'm using this little set-up I've kept around to veneer relatively small pieces. Solid wood cauls, ply-wood "plates"/cauls, flaw-board, wax paper, and clamps. Low tech and effective, the way I like it!

Pre-finishing continues, some uncomfortable angled glues-up will follow next time.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Combo Amp Stand

Ah yes, starting a new project!
This one is furniture of a bit different kind. I'm making an Amp Stand for a guitarist that has spent many years honing their craft and gear.
This is the mock-up on the left and the pieces for the finished product to the right. Kind of funny how much it looks like a chair. That's what happens when a furniture maker designs and amp stand heh.

Though relatively small and airy, it is a fairly complicated build with angles, loaded joinery, and knowing that a fairly heavy vibrating object is to be used on it.
This drawing represents the main rail, that the amp's bottom will sit on, and the connection to the front leg. There is to be a through tenon in the main rail so room for joinery from the leg is tight. I decided to opt for three dowels. In this case it is a more effective use of space than a tenon.

After cutting, finessing, boring, and fitting I've got the main triangles dry fitting pretty well.

On to the through tenon mortises. I was a bit nervous about this because it has been so long since I've done free-hand mortise cutting, and it's a fairly big bit at the end of a rail. Luckily this Walnut is working nicely and the process quickly came back to me.
Taping your work-piece to a backer board prevents blow-out and adds stability to your work-piece.

The chair-like sides are just about ready for edge and end-grain treatment. I figure I'd get a start on that little shelf. I'm laminating a substrate to make my desired thickness. While that is clamped face-gluing I went to the band saw and planer to make veneer from the same plank of Walnut the rest of the piece is made from.

I'm feeling pretty good about my rate of progress thus far. I hope I haven't jinxed it!