Wednesday, December 31, 2014

It's the Little Things

Robert Earl Keen is a Texas singer/song writer, one of his songs has a line "It's the little things that piss me off". That line pretty much applies to many things in life but especially to woodworking.

I've been rebuilding my small box stock over the Solstice break. When you do a few in a row normally each one will get a little better and that has been the case with the box builds. The dovetails get a little cleaner, the top and base fit a little better, even the finish tends to look better with each new box.

Of course there has to be a yes but. Yesterday I started the last of the current set of boxes. I was feeling pretty cocky, The joints had been really nice on the last couple of boxes with good fit right off the saw and needing very little chisel work. I figured as this was the last of a series I would go all out to make it as perfect as I could.....As always wrong Bubba. I did really pay extra attention to the marking, sawing and chiseling and every thing looked near perfect until I went to test the joints.

With dovetails I do not normally do a complete fit, I will just place the tails over the pins to see if I can start the joint. If I can, then I will set the pieces in final relation to each other add glue to the long grain and knock the joints home. The operative word being knock the joint home. With these the first corner fell into place as did all the others. For some reason every joint was loose, well shaped but loose as a goose. The only thing that changed between this box and the ones before was I used a different saw, still a dovetail saw but different.  That shouldn't have made a difference's the little things....

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