Sunday, April 20, 2008

Stickley #913 Harvey Ellis Dresser, Part 4

There aren't a lot of pictures for this post because most of the time was spent sanding, to be specific, hand blocking all the sides of the carcass and the top to prepare for the first coat of Watco Danish Oil. I went over everything with a quarter sheet palm sander with 180 grit sand paper after last week sanding to 150 grit with a random orbit sander. I followed the palm sander with 220 grit hand sanding.
I started Oiling the piece by coating the top by itself and setting it out in the sun to soak up some UV. I then used a foam brush to flood a generous coating of oil over the surface of the carcass, a few minutes later I looked for dry spots and recoated them. After an hour I took an old t-shirt and wiped off the excess oil. I love this part, when you rub each inch of the wood, seeing the grain highlighted by soaking up the oil, feeling the smoothness of the panels and the sharp angles of the edge.
Once the oil was wiped off and is dry to the touch I attached the top to the sides using three pocket screws on each side. I had elongated the screw holes prior to finishing the piece, this will allow the top to move with expansion and contraction of the wood.
Once the top was attached I flooded on another coat of oil and this time left it for 15 minutes before wiping off as per the instructions on the can. You can really tell that the amount of oil needed to cover the surface is significantly less. One reason I really like this finish is the way it leaves the piece feeling, smooth and silky but not overcoated and plastic. When everything is finished and I have the final coats of oil on and dried I will rub on a coat of clear liquid wax to give it a really smooth "hand".
I covered the dresser with a soft flannel sheet and cut the dadoes for the back panel. I also cut the tenons for the rails for the back panel. I trimmed the tenons with a small shoulder plane until I got a perfect slip fit. I glued it up and set it aside to dry. The back panel will be screwed in place and later will be glued in place to add a lot of rigidity to the carcass but for now I need access to the back of the drawer supports to fit the center drawer guides once the drawers are completed.
I also took the time today to rough cut the curly maple for the drawer fronts and began some of the milling. Hopefully this week I'll be able to finish milling the stock for the drawers, did I mention that there were nine drawers, and start on the dovetails.

"He has achieved success who has worked well, laughed often, and loved much."
Elbert Hubbard

1 comment:

Margaret said...

It looks just great, Brad! I wish I knew a place I could get furniture like that. Maybe I'll take up woodworking myself!