Saturday, March 13, 2010

Days Four and Five

Day four suffered a picture shortage, but as planned I fit the back panel and door to the case. About 10:30pm the day ended with cutting the hinge mortises in the top and bottom of the cabinet. the router seemd scary so I used chisels and router plane, the funny looking item in the photo. 

Day five was a drive toward glue-up of the carcase; detailing, prefinishing, cutting holes for shelf pins. There were a couple significant design-as-you-go decisions, both involving the top. Mid-afternoon I added a horizontal detail line around the underside of the top, shown here:

Then at 10pm during a dry run of the glue-up it became apparent that the top needed a curving top surface, so I took the completely finished piece to the bandsaw and whacked away the offending material, cleaning it up with a handplane:

A small thing with a big effect on the piece. I'll have to refinish the top after glue up.

Then it was on to glue-up, in which I nearly destroyed the entire week of work; in spite of having done a dry run, during the real thing I glued the left side in upside down and backwards. I was breathing a sigh of relief and admiring the glued and clamped cabinet when I decided to lay the door in just to double check squareness. The door didn't fit, not even close...because the rabbet for the back--which was facing forward in the backwards piece--is an entirely different shape.

Deciding a fight was better than setting fire to the shop, I hastily took the clamps off, disassembled two and put them back together as spreaders, and pried the case apart. It was reluctant, but finally popped. I flipped the inverted side but noticed some dowels would have to be removed and replaced in different spots. They were really stuck; as I pulled and torqued with pliers the dowel twisted like a corkscrew.

Ultimately they came out, went where they belonged and my daughter Meghan walked in to witness a victorious reassembly, which I will accept as evidence of a merciful God.

Tomorrow: hang the door.

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