Saturday, November 16, 2013


This past month has brought with it some profound changes
and I've taken my grief and frustration out on my table
the underside has been left in a very raw state
I want to remember this month every time I touch it

cross-grain scrub planing leaves tell-tale texture
but I needed the edges to be smooth
using a block plane I transitioned the underside from the edge in
it offers an extraordinary tactile  experience

to get everything crisp and even requires moving around
a lot
lines change when you change position, the faces interact
and if they are not perfect huge wiggles happen

I could work these edges for another week, but I'm not gonna

except for drilling the round mortices for the base connection the top is done
it needs a few coats of polyacrylic but I can do that anytime

the next step is to get hauling on the base
that means big walnut
and some complicated joinery I have yet to figure out

for no good reason other than being fed up with the beige wallpaper peeling off my walls
I took a week off and ripped, patched and painted the future home of this project

Goodbye, sweet SE

Friday, November 1, 2013


the turning of the seasons never fails to evoke far more emotion than I am privy to display in public
this has been a year of heightened emotions as it is
my therapy (escape?) is documented here on these pages

my hours at work have dried up here near the end of the year, so I have a great deal more time to devote to my shop
the weather is still warm enough to glue and finish, yet not too warm to plane
a couple long days with the smoother revealed a distinct problem with this slab
the spalting which gave it so much character would be its undoing
there was no way to avoid tear out of the powdery figure
I tried every plane
tuned each up for a second go
tried scraping
tried sanding

so I did the next best thing
filled it in

 my grain filler came out far too cool, so a dab of dye was called for

after a good sand a couple coats of oil urethane were wiped on to seal it all up
the underside was cleaned up and sealed as well
time to move on to the ends

I've spent a couple months now watching these pieces move in relation to one another
and I'm sure I have all the proper clearances worked out
I drilled out the ends first

positioned everything, using the auger bit as a awl to mark the tenons
and made a point on either side of that mark
you'll notice I've moved the starting point about a 64th of an inch towards the slab
this will create a draw-bore effect to tighten the seam

 drill them out one at a time

and chop the waste between

the center tenon and peg on each end will just have a hole, not a slot, this is the single anchor for the ends
it is the only part of the joint in which the mortice and tenon will be glued
for the others the bottom of the hole in the end gets glue and just the top half inch of the peg before its driven home, ensuring no glue gets into the slot

you've seen pegs get made before, but it is a nice shot

give them a day to dry and we'll move on