Six board chest glamour shots

From above.
From above.

Wood: Sapele – Hardwood to Go

Preparation: Top is sanded to 320, all other surfaces are hand planed / scraped.

Finish: Watco Teak Oil

finish (1 of 1)

Moulding class interuption

Bet you thought my next post would be about my finished six board chest.  Sadly, not .. BUT for a good reason!  🙂

Months ago, I signed up for Matt Bickford’s Moulding Plane class at Port Townsend Woodworking School and it was this weekend.  As usual, it’s always really fun to go to PT and our class was a good one.  From what I can see Matt works his butt of setting up a system that works for beginners.  I can’t imagine how much time he’s spent figuring out all of this.  

BTW, moulding planes probably should come with a warning.  There is math and visualization involved.  I had a fried brain by the end of class.

Here are a few shots from class.

PS.  I also got a chance to meet  Rob Campbell of The Jointer’s Apprentice who now works there!!

Ewwww! Clinched nails make me curse!!

practise (1 of 1)
I practiced with several nails before attempting to install the battens.

So it was time to attach the battens to the lid using the clinched nail technique.

So I cleaned up the battens, drilled the pilot holes and clamped it in place.  I also ground the nail tips on the bench grinder as described below.  All good to go, right?

curses crack (1 of 1)
The larger nail cracked the top as I tried to insert it.

demo tools (1 of 1)

As I drove the 2 1/2″ nail through the batten and top, a piece of the top cracked and broke.  ARGGGGGH!

I had to get the demo tools out and regroup.

After switching to 2″ inch nails, enlarging the pilot holes and deepening the counter bore ->Success!!!

One other thing I’d do differently  .. make the moulding on the lid bigger, say 1/2″.  That way the nail is in the round over and not at the edge of the round over and in the thick part of the lid.

And heat treating the nails and sharpening the points really seemed to help the clinching procedure.

Some of the tricks I used:

Installing the moulding – Doh!

I used the following section from Chris Schwarz Six Board Chest Chapter to help me install the moulding around the chest.  His process worked great, but my lack of fore sight resulted in less than fabulous results.

Wrapping moulding around three sides of a carcase is cake compared to making the full 360°. Focus on getting one corner good and tight. Then clamp those two pieces in place on the chest and mark the other corner for its miter.

With both miters cut on the front piece you can focus on getting the fit tight on the returns (the pieces that “return” down the ends of your chest).

I leave the returns long until after everything is glued and nailed in place, so don’t mess with those until you have to.

Planting moulding is an art. There are lots of ways to do it; I learned how to do it from a trim carpenter. I drill pilots for my fine finish nails through the moulding and push them into the pilots with my fingers until the tips of the nails protrude slightly (almost nothing) from the moulding.

I fit the miters on the carcase and then tap the nails into the carcase so they bite the carcase. Then I remove the moulding and add glue to the moulding. Glue the entire front of the moulding. On the returns, only glue the miters and the front one-third of the moulding to the ends.

installing the moulding (3 of 7)
Moulding glued and nail driven in.

Press everything in place for a minute or two. Then drive the brads. The moulding should not shift. Set the brads. Then saw the returns flush at the back of the carcase. The base is complete.

Returns trimmed.
Returns trimmed.

So why didn’t my mitres close up?  I didn’t get my case exactly square and once the nails were in, I was’t able to fix it.  Doh!