Monday, October 08, 2018

Seat Blank

The Honey Locust seat blank is out of the clamps and I marked it off using the seat template I made Saturday. After marking I trimmed the blank close to the line with the bandsaw. Now it is drawknife, spokeshave, and #5 to smooth the edge. I expect I will put a heavy chamfer on the front and side edges, undecided on the back edge, before moving on to drilling and reaming the leg mortises.

The seat edges being trued and smoothed:

I need to go through the wood pile to decide on the leg blanks. Right now I'm thinking either Beech, Red Oak or even White Oak. The Honey Locust in the wood pile's grain is too swirly to make good legs. Once the leg wood is picked then the next decisions are the shape, round, octagon, or tapered and which way, and done with the lathe, plane, drawknife, spokeshave, or some combination of one or more.

All the options are half the fun because there really isn't a correct one. 

BTW, have I ever told you how much I love the portable Moravian bench with the Lake Erie wood screw vise? For as light as it is and portable, it is almost as stable as the main bench. The only time the main bench is better is when sawing crosswise across the bench. Then you can feel the weight difference.

I sure will be glad when the woodstore comes through with my 12/4 Ash so I can make the base for a shop sized Moravian bench. The wood screw is here, the Beech slab is finished. All I need is 30 or so board feet of Ash to finish that sucker off. A couple of weeks max if I can get my hands on the wood.



  1. From your posts and several online videos by Will Myers I am very impressed by the Moravian workbench. I don't think there is any question that it is the best design for a portable bench and, while I'm still a fan of the Nicholson design, it's obviously a great choice for the shop too. If I ever built one, the only thing I'd do differently is leave the leg vise off, but I'm an outlier on that score.

    1. Andy,

      When I first thought about building the bench all I wanted was something portable. Once I built one and worked on it I began to realize just how developed and sophisticated the design was. I'm with you on vises, most are overrated and most operations on the bench go better without one, then I remember how sweet the wood screw one works :-).

      BTW, I expect a Nicholson bench is a better viseless bench because of the apron than the Moravian.