Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Woodworking class results

My friend Sharon over at Laurelhurst Craftsman Restoration reminded me over a month ago that I had never posted pictures of the projects I finished while taking woodworking with her over at PCC.
Without further ado, here are a couple of the things that I was able to complete during the class.

Our first project was a cutting board.  We did a cutting board because it was a quick and easy project that taught us how to use many of the tools in the shop.  Of course, I didn't want just a plain ol' cutting board with a handle and had been eyeing the state shaped cutting boards on etsy, so I decided I would test my skills with a jigsaw.    Success! 
Some of the steps included planing the wood, gluing it up, more planing, tons of sanding and using the jigsaw before sanding it more.  Mine is made from Dark Walnut and one other (maybe Beech?  I can't recall).  When all finished, I oiled it up with mineral oil.  Not thinking about where I placed it, it has sat on the window sill just above the kitchen sink for around 4months.  When I took this picture, I realized how many water splatters and therefore color alterations it already has.  Guess it's time to sand it a bit with some 400 grit sand paper and oil it again.
I love the cutting board so much and got so many complements that I made a few more Oregon cutting boards as Christmas gifts (including a mini version that my friend Chris, who I always talk about, plans to turn into a book end) as well as a California cutting board for my friend Katie (it came out super skinny so I think it will more be a display piece or just for maybe a log of goat cheese).

And the big project that we did next was supposed to be a plant stand.  However, I altered the size a bit so that we could have a side table for next to our living room couch.  I have been looking for a table for a couple years now-it needed to be relatively narrow at just over a foot wide. And oak.  And have a great place to hold a beer (ok, let's be honest, maybe two).
This project took a ton more work but I really enjoyed it.


 I was delighted to learn that we would be joining all of the parts of the table (with the exception of the top) together with mortise and tenon joints-many arts & crafts pieces of furniture are joined this way.  You basically use a router to cut out all of the pieces and then adjust sizing as needed to make the male and female parts fit accordingly.  I had to use a file and chisel to make the male pieces quite a bit smaller but it all worked out.  After many fittings and making sure everything was plumb and level, I glued it all together. 

The only hardware consists of two screws and plates (can't recall the name but they basically are a bit loose and allow to wood to expand and contract easily without damaging the wood and keeping things study at the same time).  The plates insert into little cuts in the frame of the wood (you can see the slits in the pix 3 above).

Another thing I like about the table is it is white oak-the same kind of oak that our dining room buffet is built out of.

1920s Heywood Wakefield living room chair detail

custom built dining room buffet detail
In addition, the lines of the table (the instructors had a pattern with these lines already made) match the lines of the buffet as well as our living room chairs.

After all the glue was dry and the piece was home, I finally got around to staining it between Christmas and New Years.  That's when I attached the two pieces of hardware.  Already loving it and Steve is using it to hold his beer as I type.  Mission Accomplished.
I gave myself a big pat on the back last week when my brother in law was over and he commented on the nice new furniture piece (my table) that we got and how much he liked it.  Woot! 10 points for me!  And he has worked in carpentry :)  He didn't even know I made it (with a ton of help from the teachers) but he also didn't look really closely and therefore wasn't able to see all of my mistakes.  I was going to take the class again to build a built-in for our bathroom (the teachers agreed to help me if I brought in dimensions and a sketch), however, my dad offered to build it (as I talked about a few days ago) when my parents come to visit at the end of the month.  Sounds like plan to me.

1 comment:

  1. Your table turned out beautifully! I still haven't stained my little plant stand. I'm hoping to stain it when I stain our master bedroom in a couple of ?days/weeks.

    I didn't end up taking woodworking this quarter. Mr. Landers had been scheduled to teach the class and there was no replacement. Hopefully someone will step up next quarter and the program won't be lost. =(