the Carpentry Way: Coffee Anyone? (4)                                                          

Coffee Anyone? (4)

Work has been progressing steadily on the coffee table the past week, while I have been wrestling with those various delightful machinery issues. Previous episodes in this thread can be located in the 'blog archive' to the right side of the page.

After allowing the glue to dry adequately on the table shelf panel, I cut the panel to its stretched octagonal form and rebated the edge:

Another view - can you spot the glue line?:

I have left the tongue on the edge a little fat for the time being, and only 3/16" in from the edge. Eventually it will be 1/4" in from the edge. I will plane the top and finish it before tackling that remaining cutting work.

I decided to build the shelf frame next. First of course the stock was re-sawn, jointed, and planed, then re-jointed and re-planed a few days later after letting the wood work out any residual stresses, taking the stock down to finish dimension plus 0.005~0.007" or so.

Then I did a bunch of layout, and forgot my camera that day so no pics sorry! I made a few different jigs to allow me to process a fair bit of the joinery work using a sliding table saw. Here's where things stood after the stock had been trimmed to length, and a rebate taken on one end:

Here's one of those jigs in the early stages of fabrication:

This above unit was to trim cuts at both a 22.5˚ angle and a 45˚ angle.

Following the large rebate, which defines a portion of the joint, I did a couple of cuts to define a tongue on the end of that portion:

Another view:

Then I decked that rebated surface down to dimension. I chose to use my router table for that step, placing a 3/4" MDF piece across to even out any potential issues from the slightly uneven top:

The cut depth was calibrated carefully, then I proceeded with the trimming:

Here is the result, the joinery surfaces nicely cleaned up on both the lap surface and the tongue:

A little closer look:

At the end of the day I made a start on the 'female' end of the joint - here's a spot in the process where I remembered to snap a picture, a section where I am just part way through that phase of cut out:

Today's cut out all went very smoothly and I am holding to a cut tolerance of about +/- 0.002" or so, right across the, uh, board, so to speak. I put that down to accurate jointing, which was made possible by having the jointer tables reground recently.

I should have the joinery completed in the next couple of days on these frame miters. Then I need to make the middle dovetailed batten and mortise the long frame sides and the shelf panel for that batten, then groove the inside of the frames for the Wenge panel, and finally mold the outside edge of the frame. Today I ordered up some custom-made knives for the shaper so I can produce the exact molding profile I want. Those should arrive by the beginning of next week I imagine.

I've made a few slight design revisions in the past week. The leg to frame joints, and the table top frame corner joints have been reconfigured. More on that when I get to it in the thread.

I have also put a 'pod' or foot back under the leg. Hello again! I kept feeling like something was missing there after I removed it previously, and I came to realize that it would be nice to have levelers anyhow on the bottom of the legs, so I decided that I could combine the earlier idea of a pad with a leveler. Here's a few of the ideas that I came up with:

In the end I liked the round button-like leveler foot pad on the left side of the above set. It took me a while to move away from polygons - a mental rut or something like that. The 'button' is petite and discrete, yet does just enough to bring the stirrup on the bottom of the foot a little more clearly up off the surface. The client likes it too, which is the main thing.

Here's a view of the table with the new legs and levelers:

And one more for good luck:

The profile on the shelf in the above pictures has been changed slightly in the last couple of days - making the bead a little smaller and recessed back in slightly. It should come out quite well.

All for today - thanks for dropping by the Carpentry Way.  ➪ on to post 5