Evolution of a Four Drawer Base Unit for Mortising Machine - page 3

Theblack locust top really plays with light. With six or seven coats of hand rubbed blonde shellac, dark areas become light and light areas become dark as you walk around the cabinet. Around the tight knot, the grain goes nuts and acts almost like a hologram - the flat surface looking wavy, bumpy or folded as you move closer or walk away from the cabinet. This picture really doesn't do the wood justice but gives you a hint of how active the grain is. (Have about 450 bf of this stuff - about a quarter of it has a few pin knots but otherwise clear - be a while before I've got enough knowledge and skill to do these justice).

Still need to add some kind of handle on the front of this thing so there's something to grab when I have to move the mortising machine out to use it or get it back up against the walll and out of the way. Will probably make one out of maple to go with the drawer pulls color. But here's what I've ended up with so far. Still have some decisions to make on either having the drawer faces flush with the cabinet's face or inset a little. Am leaning towards insetting them and chamfering the top edges of the drawer dividers to go with all the other chamfered edges on this thing. We'll see. After that decision is made I'll be able to install drawer stops and then attach the top.

Am going to hate drilling holes in the top for bolting the mortising machine on. Seems a crime to cover up most of that pretty, interesting locust with a big green machine but "It's just shop furnture.".

I never can remember if it's "Loose in the Winter and Tight in the Summer" or the other way around so I did the breadboard end of the table top apron long to accomodate a probably wider than necessary mortise. Better safe than sorry. Gives a little more visual width to the top when seen from the front.

Another unintended effect of the way the table apron was made was initially a concern. To get a lot of common glue surface area between the apron sides and the sides of the table I did a 5/8 inch wide rabbet in the apron components. Since all the stock for the apron is the same thickness, the rabbeted sides of the apron appear to be half the width of the front and rear breadboard ends. But, looking from the front, due to perspective, the sides all seem to be the same thickness untill you're looking almost straight down. Sometimes I screw up and still make things better. Using the old "it's not a mistake - it's a slick feature!"

Here's The General with its new home. Two sets of "came with it" mortising chisels and bits in the top drawer, a nice boxed Fisch set in the second drawer with the extra collet. The stops rods and the Jet drill press "mortising attachment stuff" in the third drawer and an entire bottom drawer with nothing in it - yet.

This "just slap something together that'll do the job" piece has been fun and interesting to make. As usual, I learned a lot and have a better appreciation for solid wood furniture makers. There's a lot more things you have to consider when the material is going to move.

Now, if you'd like check out my attempt at a Mortise & Tenon Primer click here

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