Tuesday, March 29, 2016

A Ming-Inspired Cabinet (47)

Fitting rails to carcase boards continued this morning. In the following picture, I'm showing that the joint is sufficiently tight in fit that the rail holds a horizontal position from the connection without any opening occurring:


Looking closer, it was another miter which had come together satisfactorily:


And then, strangely, I found myself without rails to fit, as they had all been fitted. I was adrift, bereft of purpose....

Not so much.

Onto the fitting of the drawer dividers to the floor of the carcase:


I was very careful in laying out the parts so that the divider assembly is centered over the floor.

At this point, the dadoes are cut and I'm marking out tenon locations on the dado floor:


Locations marked, I drilled out most of the waste, using a clamp-on depth stop on the brad point drill to ensure no mishaps:


I then routed the bottoms of the mortises flat and about 1/32" deeper than the tenons which will be fitted to them.

Some chisel work ensued on those mortises to square them up, and then it was time to do a trial fit:


It was tight, but after a little tuning, I got the divider to squeeze most of the way down:


At that point, the outer pairs of tenons, which are done blind, were trimmed back, so as to leave the middle pair of tenons long, as these will be through tenons. I marked out the reverse face of the board and proceeded to cut the mortise openings for those through tenons:


Afterward, a check with the board on the wrong side, just to confirm the middle tenon pair is a decent fit in the mortises just cut:


With the board then placed back on the correct side, and tapped down with a rubber mallet, the tenons emerge:


The pencil lines indicate the amount of flaring these mortises will receive later on. This connection would only be visible if you laid on the ground by the cabinet stand and looked up at the base of the carcase. Still, I try to obtain a decent fit at every connection, exposed or otherwise. That said, I am 10x fussier with connections which are exposed, particlarly those at normal viewing position.

Here's a look at the fitted divider:


As the drawers occupy this area of the cabinet, none of the joinery just completed will be seen. Only the front edge of the divider will be exposed to view. It does save on the amount of finish that needs to be applied, looking on the bright side :^)

A while later the opposite divider was also fitted:


As I tend to want to err on the side of a tighter joint than a looser one, sometimes in test fitting the withdrawal of one piece can cause an injury to the other:


It's annoying, but it does happen sometimes, especially with the curly bubinga.

When this occurs, so as not to risk the uplifted piece detaching and being lost, I get on with the repair work immediately - for this, I use cyanoacrylate glue and accelerator:


See? I use glue sometimes! It's good for some things.

After clean up:


The completed dadoes with multiple mortises on the floor board of the carcase:


A meeting with my tax preparer ate up some of my morning, so completing the above joints was the total accomplishment for today. Before leaving, I fitted the floor board back to one of the sides:


Sometimes it feels like things are progressing slowly with this project, but I am working somewhat cautiously as I have no extra material whatsoever, and extra material of this sort is rather hard to come by anyway. There is no room for error, and, as more and more joinery is cut, I become increasingly nervous about any mishap occurring. Joinery work requires an ability to visualize spatial relationships, and it is easy, especially when fatigued, to get one part backward, things like that. If I'm not totally clear about how something goes together, I don't layout or do cut out on that part. 'Winging it' does not tend to lead to satisfactory outcomes in most cases I have found. So, whenever I feel annoyed about any sense of slow progress, I remind myself that it is better to be moving forward without mishap than be stressing out over some mistake that occurred as a result of rushing.

All for today - thanks for your visit to the Carpentry Way. On to post 48.

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