Bench Cross Member

Now that each end of the bench is assembled it’s time to get the final pieces ready.  The long rails needed a bit of adjustment to fit into their mortises and the cross member was trimmed to close to final size.  Then the parts were taken upstairs and dry assembled to make sure the bench would actually fit between the table legs (better safe than sorry).

Now it was finally time to shape the cross member.  First I applied a 1/2 inch wife wide and 1/8th inch deep rabbit on each side (I realize it should have been 5/8th but it worked out).  It was nice to use my Stanley 45 plane, it’s been sitting on the sidelines for too long.

Then it was time to round over the corner and since I do t have a set of hollows and rounds it was the 45 to the rescue again.  Yup, I have a set of the hollow and round attachments for the 45 (including the stair tread one).  The 6h was just the right size.


It’s not perfect but that’s kind of the point 🙂

Shaping the legs of the Bench

My second son (time to start saving up for the teenage food bills) arrived a little over a week ago and everyone is doing great.  

Maybe it’s a sign that I work to much but this paternatity leave has been very productive for work around the house.  Projects that have been languishing for months are finally getting done.  Case in point, the dining table bench joinery is almost complete as we are approaching the one year mark on the project.  
Only two joints remain but since there were two sleeping children and a very sleepy moma I decided to start shaping the legs.  After checking my models it was time for layout.  First I set a pencil compas to 7/16ths and marked out the chamfers: then using a divider set or 5/8″ and another set to 1 1/4″ I marked out the top and bottom of the transition curves; and then used one of my French curves to trace the curve.


Next I sawed the transition points from the chamfer bottom to the curve to arrest any splits that might start while removing material.


A draw knife removed most of the waste and then I experimented with various tools to make the curve before settling on my largest chisel bevel side down.  Then a snap spoke shave smoothed out the chamfer.  Still a lot of “make pretty” work to go but it’s starting to look like the original.


Three more to go…

Bench progress, one end together

It’s been a long time since the dining table bench has received any love.  Work has been running me ragged and despite having 5 projects right now, all with deadlines, I took some time in the shop this weekend to finish up the joinery on one of the ends.

We have also been getting ready for the second son’s arrival and the door between our bedroom and the nursery has been sticking so my wife asked me to take care of it.  I grabbed my low angle block plane expecting a simple task but discovered the problem was a loose hinge.

Someone had used cardboard to shim both the door and frame sides of the hinge and had used corrugated cardboard.  All of the moisture from the torrential rains had resulted in the cardboard collapsing and a loose hinge.  Well off came the door and down to the garage it went.


I cut some shins from some thin maple strips I had laying around and used a router plane to flatten the hinge mortise and bring the hinge plate flush to the door edge.

Old growth Douglas fir