Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Partision & Back Frame

As Mentioned last time, pre-finishing! Using air-dried Walnut I want to show off the natural colors and tones of the wood that is quite different from the Kiln-dried variety. I hope that in some small way I can raise awareness and promote the appeal of air-dried material. The wood left to its own devises is really in its top form.
Anywho I chose "orange" shellac for the Walnut as it helps along those deep chocolate tones but doesn't mask the subtle gradients the way oil might. Four coats this time with one light coat of wax, still a minimal finish :)

The carcass glued up and working on the partision. I cut the partision to approximate size (meaning still too big to fit) then I shoot the end grain with a block-plane to fit. I am fitting from the back because there is an ever so slight taper to the carcass that I built in for the purpose of fitting this partition. The riser blocks are there to support the partition at the height that it will live. There could be slight variations in width of the carcass along its height. Always fit your components where they will end up!

The partision fit and being finished I had time to address the hing mortises in the door. After the partision was glued in I fit the door too.

The back frame. Walnut from the same plank. 3/8" thick. Here I was fitting the partision "backer" again with shooting board and block plane.

Searching for that back panel! I'm using a cut of that Mystery wood I used as the bottom of my Arbutus Box from IP. Still don't know what it is, but I do know that its difficult to work with, its attractive, and I don't have much of it. A precious bit of wood... my friend better appreciate it ha.
I normally stray away from book matching but the colors wouldn't allow a slip match. I looked at a flip match but felt it just looked hokey like it was obviously fighting that book match... so I just went with it. The prismatics of this piece really isn't an issue so it turned out just fine.

With the softening details done to the frame and panel, pre-finishing done, it's time for glue-up. The partision backer is doweled and the frame uses slip-tenons aka bridal joints. Remember to clamp those tenon wings together! Particularly with these thin joints the moisture from the glue can do funny things heh.
The panel looks a bit funky with the unfinished Walnut, but when the frame is finished... you may not be able to take your eyes away hehahehae. but seriously, it should be nice.

This is turning out to be a quite small and simple but lovely little project. It's one thing to be able to do a great, impressive, technical, "grandiose" piece which is all well and good, but it's another to work on a modest scale and be able to make the project your own and to make it live with its own "personality" :)

On the topic of "more grandiose", here is a shot from my sketch book... I've never claimed to be a drawer heh. I think the top cabinet with the legs may be my next project. Standing at about 5' tall it will be a display case on a stand. I would be lying if I said that Rene Almon's Euro Cherry cabinet in Waken Hands didn't affect me. I made this sketch months after seeing Rene's cabinet, I wasn't even actively thinking about that cabinet but it left its impression... After doing a preliminary scale drawing I looked in Waken Hands again and found it to be within 2" of the same diamentions! GAH! Well there's no use fighting it ha. I'm not going to purposely uglify my work just to try to make it more different. It already is a different cabinet besides the fact that we are two different people and will see the details in different ways.
The sketch under is one I would also like to peruse on a stand. Obviously I was affected by JK's walk about cabinets ha. As similar as it may be in "genetic make up" to JK's I think that even in the sketch it obviously shows my "persona".
Currently I'd like to see it some Cedars, but don't know if that soft of wood would be a great idea for a walk-about..?
Back when I started this whole woodworking thing I used to get caught up in trying to be unique. Did that produce really great and fine work? I don't really think so. At this point in the "evolution" of furniture/craft/whatever there doesn't seem to be a lot of "firsts" left. Now most of the "truly unique" stuff out there "truly suck" ha. That isn't to say that there is no room left but why fight what is great work? If I happen upon something "out there" that I'd still be happy with I wont hesitate to do it. I'll just continue to try to do what I want to do, make great, livable furniture and cabinets :).


SGI said...

Looking good Nick. So what is your beef with book matching?

Digging the claw-foot on the display case... go with that.. ;-)

Nick Brygidyr said...

"Now most of the "truly unique" stuff out there "truly suck" ha"


not all..but..i got that FWW design book for ideas and...yeah..lol

Nick Brygidyr said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dan McCallum said...

Hey Nick,

What kind of cedar were you thinking of?

Also, what are your thoughts on orange shellac vs. Waterlox/tung/spirits mix for the walnut?

Cheers, Dan.

Nicholas Nelson said...

Scott, Ha my beef... well Book matching and its variations sets up the prismatics in opposing directions divided at the seam. In some woods more than others it is a very noticeable difference and highlights the joint not allowing a flowing feel/view of the piece in question. Also Book matching by its symmetric nature tends to point to the joint and can get a bit "mechanical" lets say for my taste.

Nick B, Which design book do you have? I have a book and that mag they put out. Not all bad stuff but like I said... the really "unique" stuff ... ha

Dan, I was thinking about white and western red cedar(s).
Shellac vs oil. I do like oil on Walnut. It depends on the piece of course. The KD Walnut Pedestal I made has an oil finish. I just find that it can neutralize its color variation a bit and tends to make the subtly colored walnut much more brown overall muting the mauve and violet tones. Oil probably gives a bit more "executive" feel while a minimal shellac finish has a more "casual" feel in terms of Walnut... but that is my opinion.

Nick Brygidyr said...

design book 9 i think? there are some IP and CR pieces in it. i dont think i saw a vegetable chair thankfully, i think you know the one im talking about hehe!

and i love bookmatching! except with maple and birch and i donno those are the only ones that come to mind.