Sunday, December 5, 2010

Student Desk / Christmas Gift

Full extension drawer slides
This desk was made for our oldest granddaughter for a Christmas gift. The entire desk, with the exception of the side panels, is made of soft maple. Mortise and tenon joinery throughout. Top is 26" x 51".

Desk with drawers closed
The desk is finished with General Finishes Vintage Cherry dye stain to best compliment the colors of the other furniture in her room. I had used a sanding sealer but still had to deal with some blotching in some areas of the desk, but overall I think it came out okay. This desk is very solid and very heavy, I'm sure it will be around for a long time. I used a plan from WOOD and made changes along the way. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

Windsor Chair - Repair

A local lady contacted me to see if I could repair a chair she became attached to over the years. Best I can tell, it was originally built as a rocker with a shaw or comb back and was converted to a chair for reasons I can't determine. She bought it at a collectables dealer. The bottom of the legs had been cut with a dowel installed and another piece added (front legs).  I replaced the two broken back legs, the back stretcher, glued and wedged the other loose joints, and glued the large crack running front to back on the seat. If you look at the seat in the "before" pics, you will see a large burn mark. I tried to sand that mark out and math the finish color. The finish is a mix of General Finishes Salem Maple and Minwax Oak. Photos with captions follow. 

"Can you fix this please"? This is how the chair arrived to my shop. 
There was something attached at one time, looks like the spindles were cut off.
Bottom of chair with what is left of the legs broken off in the seat. Looks like a spoon 

bit was used since the legs holes were not drilled through the seat.

One way to fix a broken leg and a cracked set at the same time I guess

Burn on lower left front of seat, crack down the right side

Finished Chair -turned back legs and stretcher from hard maple, repaired burn mark on seat.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Adirondack Settee

Adirondack Settee built for one of the guys in the weekday golf group. Made of Poplar, stainless steel screws and waterproof glue used during assembly, and finished in a good quality exterior latex.  I enjoyed making this and he and his wife are enjoying it now that it has found a home on their deck.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Finished Sack Back Windsor

This is the Sack Back Windsor chair I made during my week long class at the Windsor Institute in late July. You can read about my experience in a previous blog posting. I chose the traditional milk paint finish and the color is a deep Windsor Green. Once the paint was dry, I finished it with danish oil to give it a nice sheen.

chair sanded and ready for the milk paint
Another view

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Child's Table and Chairs

My son and daughter in law asked that I build a chair and table set for our grandson for his play room. The table is 24" square and is made of  white limba, a wood I haven't used before and chose based on the recommendation of my lumber dealer. It works very much like poplar or soft maple. It is also only $1.80 bd. ft. There is also black limba, a beautiful wood, and is a little more.

I built two chairs and added a walnut strip for a little detail in the seat. I will deliver the set this weekend on our next visit north this weekend. I enjoyed building this set. I had built an identical set for our grand daughter about 7 or 8 years ago.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Jewelry Box - Curly Maple and Wenge'

Just completed this commission piece for a client who had made a previous purchase. The box measures 14"w x 9"d x 6 1/2" h and is constructed from soft curly maple, also known as ambrosia maple, and wenge' (wen-gay). The drawer liners are craft foam and worked out surprisingly well. I wanted something different than the traditional felt.

Shown with the lid and drawers closed, note the shape of the front and rear legs.

The curve of the drawer pulls match the curve of the lid handle giving the viewer the impression that there are 3 drawers.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Walnut Chess Board w/ Drawers

Now that I have some more time to catch up on projects since I retired 7/1, I finished this chess board I promised my daughter to give her husband as a gift for his birthday. 
Overall size is 16" x 16" x 3 1/2".

The board is constructed of wenge' and maple and is set in the frame with clearance for wood movement. There are 2 support rails for the board and I drilled slots in those and mounted the top with screws like a table top. This should allow for wood movement without damage.

The pieces are held in a drawer on both ends of the board. Walnut dividers keep the pieces organized, green felt drawer liners in each.

I applied 2 coats of General Finishes Arm-R-Seal gloss with a coat of wax. 

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Windsor Institute Road Trip

I left Jackson, TN Thursday 7/8 and headed off to Hampton, NH and the Windsor Institute to take the 7/12 Sack Back chair class offered my Mike Dunbar and his team of instructors, Fred and Don. It is an intense, physical class, as there is minimum use of power tools (a drill, circular saw, and instructor operated bandsaw) in the preparation and assembly of this chair. I believe you can find a direct correlation in Tylenol sales in the NE and the dates of the chair classes. I was in with a group of great people from as close as Maine, from Canada, PA, NY, OH, OK, and as far away as Seoul, South Korea. We had a young man who just turned 11 years old in our class and he did an outstanding job. His father and instructors guided him along, but he didn't need any more help than the rest of us. I have a ton of photos I took to help me for the next time, but I will summarize the assembly here to give you and idea of what "start to finish" looks like. I can say this, if you every wanted to build one of these classic chairs, learn about the chair itself and the "whys" of the design elements, you will not find anything better than attending the Institute or anyone more knowledgeable than Mike Dunbar. Mike and his crew demystify as they teach so you not only understand what you are doing, but why you are doing it.
The Windsor Institute
Mike will send you a list of tools he recommends you need once your registration is completed. Show up on Monday with your tools, and you will get your bench location and that's is were you work for the remainder of the week.

Getting organized and ready to get going.

Seat blank, spindles, and stretchers
Believe it or not, what you see here will be a completed Sack Back chair by the end of the week. Yeah, I know, I didn't believe it either :)

Smoothing the seat blank. This seat is Eastern white pine. The blanks are glued up and ready to go, but you need to pay attention to the grain as it is very possible it will run in opposite directions. Got to love those shavings!!

Seat blank cut and ready to shape the inside. The cut in the middle is made by a circular saw set for a target depth of the seat in the middle.

"swing for a single-not a bunt" was the saying you heard over and over through out the room as we took the gutter adz to start shaping the seat. I guess a "home run" would eliminate one toe!! Chop, chop, chop.
Compass plane starts the smoothing process, after the scorp, this work will last a good part of the morning.
Ready for layout lines and drilling at this point

Getting busy on the 7 back spindles, rough shaping "green" red oak so it can dry for the final shaping on Thursday.
This steam unit is one of two that prepares the arm and bow for bending. Each student pairs up with a partner to bend these parts, 

Arm and Bow in the furnace room where the conditions are set to dry these parts quickly enough that we can use them on Thursday and Friday.
Seat drilled and ready for leg and stretcher assembly

Legs and stretchers installed - nice stool you have there!

Arm stumps and short spindles dry fit, now this is starting to look like a chair.
" got 10 minutes to get this done, we need you outside"

Remember what we started this process with? All that remains is to fit the bow over the spindles. Holes are drilled, spindles are cut to length and wedged.

The happy graduating class of the 7/12/10 Sack Back class.

Everyone got there chairs completed and ready to head for home or where ever else they had scheduled for their trip. This was without a doubt one of the most memorable weeks I have ever spent in woodworking and I am looking forward to going back in the Spring to take the Writing Arm chair class.

I loaded up the chair and headed off to Cooperstown, NY to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. When I get back to my shop in TN, I will finish cleaning the chair up and get ready to apply the Milk Paint finish. On the last leg of the "Windsor Chair Road trip" spending a week in Cincinnati, so it will be a week or so before I get to doing that.  I will post some pictures of the finished chair

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Adirondack Chair - Part One

A good friend and previous customer ordered her second Adirondack chair and I thought I would take some step-by-step photos as I started the project. Maybe this will be helpful for those who haven’t tried to build one of these great chairs, or is curious about how they go together. My design is a modified version of Tom Begnal’s chair from Fine Woodworking. I have made some subtle changes with each one I build, mostly with the seat slates and the arm shape/width.

 Chair parts cut and ready to assemble

First I cut the parts required for the chair. Having built a number of these, I have a set of templates made of hardboard to speed up the layout of most of the curved parts.

Chair base complete

Take the two sides and attach the front seat slat, drill and counter sink the holes. I use waterproof glue and stainless steel screws and bolts in my chairs.  Once the front seat slat is installed, and the lower cradle and attach the same way you did the front slat.

Glue the leg assemblies now, I find this easier than bolting the chair to the body and then trying to add the arm support parts. Again, SS screws and waterproof glue. I drilled the holes for the arm attachment later in the process.

Clamp the front leg assemblies to the base. Mark and drill the bolt holes to attach the front legs. The angle of the chair is determined by the cut on the bottom of the sides so when you lift the front, it will be clear where to drill the holes to attach the legs. Quick clamps help out here.

Front legs bolted to the chair frame with 3/8” SS bolts, washers and nuts. Next step is to prepare the back risers.

Determine the angle to cut the back risers. This is where the upper cradle attaches and determines the slant of the chair back. In this case the angle is 25*. Anything less and the back may be more upright, more and the back will lay back. A personal preference, but this angle seems to be most comfortable.

Attach back risers in the same manners as the front legs. Glue prior to bolting the risers, unlike I did the first time I bolted these to the sides :) 

Add a temporary spacer at the top of the risers to get the proper spacing for the upper cradle. Drill and countersink the holes for the cradle and attach with glue and screws to the top of the risers.

Completed base assembly
The base is now complete. All of the back slats and seat slates have been cut, sanded, and ready for the finish. This chair will receive 2 coats of Porter Paint's exterior latex enamel. In the past I have either brushed or sprayed the paint after the chair is complete. I found it very difficult to get into all the tight spots after so this time I am going to paint everything before attaching the slats and arms. Look for the results in the second part of this post. You can see the templates I mentioned earlier on the right edge of the photo.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Jewelry Boxes

Travel has kept me out of the shop and off the blog for the past couple of months, but I was able to finish two jewelry boxes for a friend at work who wanted these for his daughter. The one shown is Walnut and I used Cherry for the other. The lighter wood is Ash. There are 2 mirrors on the left side, one in the back and one in the center divider. The plans came from Wood Magazine. Most of the material was either 1/4" or 3/8" so I spent a lot of time re-sawing thicker pieces. Overall size is 12" H by 11" W by 6" D. These were a pleasure to build and I understand his daughters really liked the gift from their father. 

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Walnut Quilt Rack

Quilt rack 31"x29"x10"
Catching up on postings, I have a number of projects going and that has kept me away from the computer, that and it is warming up here, so the golf clubs are getting more attention that the L-N #4.
This quilt stand is made of walnut and ash and is 31"w x 29"h and 10" deep. I turned the 7/8" rods from ash I had on hand.
The rods and stretcher are wedged through tenons and those were all cut by hand.
Applied quilt block design
The applied quilt block design is made up from a number of different exotic woods (actually some pen blanks).

The finish is my standard General Finishes semi-gloss and I topped it off with a coat of Mylands wax.