This is the 10th posting in a series on the layout and construction of a French 19th century carpenter's sawhorse; previous installments can be found via the Blog Archive section to the right of the page, and more general information on these French sawhorses can also be found in the archive - see the 'French Connection' series.
Cut out continues on the top beam mortises. The next 4 mortises in line are to receive the tenons from the long side braces, and these tenons are tapered across their width, making the mortise shape a little complicated. On top of this, all the mortises, including these next 4, are slightly parallelogram-shaped on the top beam, except for one of the leg tenons. A big help for this sort of work is to have long thin paring chisels with a triangular cross-section - shinogi gata usu-nomi in Japanese. I happen to have a decent range of sizes of this type, from various blacksmiths, most of them being made by Funahiro and Tasai.
Anyhow, another 3~4 hours work and the mortises for the long braces are roughed out:
Here's a few close-ups showing the carnage:
That above picture, jeez - it looks like a used a shotgun to blast holes through there! It actually looks cleaner than that to the naked eye - maybe I should get a different camera- with a 'flattery lens' heh-heh..
The other side, the mortise entry area:
I'm leaving the last few paring passes on these mortises for later, when it comes time to fit the tenons. Also, the final planing of the piece remains to be done, all 6 faces, and there will be some dovetail key joinery involved in mounting the sacrificial cap to the beam but that can wait.
That is piece #1 out of the way, 17 more to go. Next step is to deal with the mitered half-lap cuts out for the 6 pairs of cross-braces. Stay tuned, more to come soon.