Monday, April 27, 2015

Bath Vanity Update

The day job has been taking most of my time so progress on the bath vanity is slow. I looked at using a wood top and tried several finishes but all but the Applebee's bar finish water spotted. It's a shame but it is what it is....ordered an Ebony composite top for the base, it should look OK.

I've made the boxes for the drawers, used Soft Maple.  It has been awhile since my last use of Soft Maple, I forgot how nice it is to work.

Here is the set up for cleaning up the drawer boxes:

And the box cleaned up:


Monday, April 13, 2015

First Coat Of Oil ON The Bath Vanity

The Bath Vanity base is complete, just needs finishing. I put the first coat of BLO on this AM and will let it set for a day or two before following with Tried & True.

The drawer boxes and the top are next. I expect in spite of what the boss lady wants I'll take my chances and make the top out of South American Walnut. South American Walnut is a little soft but with an oil finish turns almost Ebony black with a brownish under tone. It should like very nice with the Cherry as the Cherry darkens with age.

Drawer boxes, meh, as I looked for the wood to make 'em last night the hunk I need is buried near the bottom of the middle stack. At least that is the 4/4 stack and not the 8/4 stack. Still my energy and back both said no mas, no mas last night and weren't any happier with the thought of digging for it this morning.

Let's see I need a trip to the wood store for the South American Walnut, since I'm there might as well add a nice 4/4 drawer stock board as well.

Here is the back of the Bath Vanity base:

And the front:

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Tenon Buttons

I usually attach the top to the base via mortices and tenon buttons. I expect most have their own way of making the buttons but here is mine....if you think your way is better please do not let me keep doing it the hard way.

I usually use a 3/8 chisel to chop the mortises which means a 9mm tenon is just about right. I like Oak for the buttons because it splits easily and a 19mm thick piece of Oak works well. I'll cut the Oak into 70mm X 30mm strips. that gives me two buttons per strip.

First step is to mark two lines near the center the length of the tenon part, carry one line to the top face and the other to the bottom face.

Then on each side mark a line near the center, none of the lines need be exact:

Saw from each of the face lines stopping at the center line on the side, then supporting one end on something give it a good whack:

repeat as often as necessary for the number of buttons needed plus I always do a few extra:

These are for attaching the top to the bath vanity, I will be needing them soon.

Bath Vanity

The Bath vanity base is in the short rows. I've some mortises to chop, the ones for the bottom shelf slats and for the top's button mortises. Should only take a couple of hours to do the chopping.  I know it's weird, but for some reason I enjoy chopping mortises. Once all the remaining mortises are finished I will shape the legs, clean everything up and then draw bore and glue that sucker together.

I'm still undecided on the top and the drawer fronts. I'm leaning toward a dark top, MsBubba might object if asked, this may be one of those do then beg forgiveness times. I'm guessing I'll go safe and just use Cherry for the drawers.

It's been nice having several days off in a row....stuff gets done.

Mickey's Bench

Around the first of the year a work friend asked if I would help him make a work bench. Sure no problem so off we go to Home Depot for a couple hundred board feet of construction grade DF. We stickered it, and covered it, and let it set as long as he could stand (a couple of weeks) before ripping the 2X12's down to working size. Then I explained it needed to set awhile to finish the major part of its stupid wood tricks after ripping.

After a couple of weeks he couldn't wait and we started truing and sizing the lumber. that's when one of his old heart problems flared up and he ended up in the hospital. Everything was put on hold for several weeks. This pattern repeated itself several times over the next months.

I'll cut to the chase: today we stood the bench up. He still needs to install his vises, drill some dog holes and trim the ends but he has a working bench. What should have been a couple of weeks job once the wood settled down ended up taking four months.

It's as ugly as granny panties with tons of mistakes because I would tell him what needed to be done and maybe show the procedure then leave it to him to do it. But as said many times during the build: "It's a work bench". That's the bad news, the good is: It is strong and solid. It sets on the ground with no rocking, the base is within a couple of mm of being square, the slab has no twist and is flat enough. It will make a hell of a good first work bench, a lot better than my first one.

A photo of Mickey with the completed base:

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

More Bath Vanity

I didn't have a lot of time in the shop today. Work asked me and one of the other instructors to write two Check Ride Plans of Action, one at KICT and the other at KMEM plus a new set of standardized questions for the Knowledge Test portion of the Aircraft Type Check (FAR 61.157 Check). I've been working on it off and on for several weeks but the Suits decided it needed to be finished yesterday. My shop time today sucked hind tit because of the deadline.

For a couple of nano-seconds I thought about a live edge slab for the top of the vanity. I even made a trip to the wood store to see if I could find a slab that would work but no joy. I expect that is a good thing because the more I thought about it the less I liked the idea.

I did get a little done. The bottom shelf stretchers are marked out and I sawed one of the stretcher tenons. Whoopee. Anyway here are a couple of photos. The first is sawing a tenon on one of the stretchers:

The second is of the finished tenon:

Monday, March 30, 2015

More on Bath Vanity

The bottom (shelf) stretchers have been fitted. I've clamped the vanity together so I can mark the shelf slats. Once that is done I'll chop and saw the slats' M/T's, put the vanity back together in sections to mark and drill the draw bores, make a couple of drawer boxes, and a top. I could be finished in a couple or three days If I could find 'em to rub together.

The Postal Lady delivered a care package from Bad Axe this afternoon. It had a couple of new saws, a 16" Tenon and a 14" Sash saw. Damn Bad Axe saws are pretty, addicting to.

New Week

I had to work over the weekend so not much done in the shop. Some folks can come home after work, go to the shop and do several hours of productive work....That ain't me. About the best I can do is a little light tool maintenance, sharpen some iron if it is already sharp, wipe the dust off and put back in place the tools left on the work bench from the last time I was in the shop. That's about it.

I did receive a ECE Coffin Smoother I "won" off eBay. The Smoother was a pleasant surprise, the iron had been honed but other than that there was no evidence the plane had ever been used. Sometimes you get lucky. I've a "horned" old style ECE Smoother on the way, another eBay "win", hope it is in as good shape as the Coffin Smoother. As always, anything off eBay is a crap shoot.

I should get a couple of saws from Bad Axe Tool Works either today or tomorrow, the two saws will almost complete my collection of Bad Axe saws. The only one left is the new 12" dovetail saw, it looks like a clone of the TFWW dovetail saw. The TFWW dovetail saw is my favorite small dovetail saw, I expect once the tool budget recovers from the last two saws, in other month, I will put one on order.

Back to the shop for a couple of hours work before the rest of the world awakes and starts demanding time.

One last thing, a friend sent this link to a youTube video about a day in the life of a line pilot. It doesn't get much truer, if you have ever wondered what it was like to set up front, watch. BTW, I received the link a couple of days before the German F.O. decided to take 150 with him.

Living the Dream

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Bath Vanity Update

I lost today to work....Can't complain too much I ended up with three unexpected days off. Stuff happens with days off, stuff does not happen on work days....Go figure.

The basic joinery with the exception of the lower shelf and the drawer divider is finished. I dry fitted the legs and stretchers to see how it looks. It's not bad.

Next up is the lower shelf, drilling and marking the mortise and tenon that will be draw bored, and chopping the button mortises for attaching the top. I also need to make the top, a small minor detail.

The UPS girl and I are becoming best buds, over my days off she delivered the Miele vacuum I ordered for my B-Day, new work shirts, a new ECE rebate plane, and a couple of books ordered from Lost Art Press. Yet to come in the next couple of days is a ECE Coffin Smoother and a couple of Back Saws from Bad Axe.

Here is a photo of prepping to saw tenon shoulders on one of the stretchers with a Bad Axe Large Tenon Saw, the saw is a beast but is really nice to use on a wide tenon:

One of the almost finished Bath Vanity base:

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Starting the Bath Vanity Joinery

Sometimes the work gods smile upon you, sometimes they piss on your head. This week they smiled. My clients canceled at the last minute so I ended up with three unexpected days off this week plus the one I had scheduled. With one phone call the sky turned blue and the birdies started to sing.

With the unexpected days off I've started the bath vanity joinery, It is pretty standard stuff, the front top stretcher will have a dovetail and the bottom stretcher double M/T. The sides and back will have split M/T joints which I expect will be pinned.

Here are few photos. The first is of one side of one of the dovetails. It needs the nasty bits cleaned but other than that is is ready to fit straight from the saw:

Ready to saw the other shoulder:

Marking the pins on the leg:

After finishing the dovetails I will saw the double tenons on the lower stretcher before moving to the sides and back. Once the basic joinery is finished I will clamp it together and mark the slats for the lower shelf.