Wednesday, August 26, 2009


There comes a time in every project that planning must make way for working, you just have to stop thinking so much and cut some tree.

After reviewing, revising, tweaking, reviewing, adjusting, compensating, measuring, critiquing, asking opinions of others who could really give a crap less, sleeping on it, reviewing, revising, tweakin.... you get the idea...I took tool in hand (a beautiful hundred plus year old Disston cross cut, and a brand new Lie-Nielsen rip cut) and started butchering.

Now you have to understand, I just started working wood maybe five years ago (seriously started working wood yesterday, and tomorrow I'll feel the same way) and this piece is daunting, many compound angles, lots of odd tennons, miters, slot dovetails, half blind dovetails, pegged blind mitered slip joints, and the dubious "attach a top to the whole damn thing" joints, and I would really rather get the most of the uncountable (unless of course you look at the account books) dollars of tools in my shop, and do the whole thing by hand. Fairly easy, with the right tools.

Of course, I don't yet have ALL the right tools... yet...

The bevels for joining the leg pieces were cut on the table saw, but as my better half said "you did buy those power tools too, you know"

However, there are jobs only a hand tool can do. Lie-Nielsen's Dovetail saw has been perfect for these tiny leg pieces. 80.3 degree compound miters and offset tennons on three by four pieces of walnut on the table saw are not the best insurance of coming out of this with all my digits intact. And to be honest, there's something rewarding in shaping a complex piece by hand, when the tools work exactly as expected, the layout lines are dead-on and the finish face reflects the time spent studying the grain and laying out the cuts accordingly. Even in the beginning I'm satisfied.

No comments:

Post a Comment