Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Showing Off? -- Maybe

Now that I'm done with the paying jobs it was time to get back to the tool chest I had in progress.  You may recall, it's designed to hold my carving chisels and planes and my goal was to use up the odd pieces of material I had laying around.  Another reason is as a skill builder.  The measurements are 16" deep by 19" high and 24" long.  The wood for the drawer fronts and top is Bloodwood, the handles are quilted birdseye Maple left over from my grandsons crib.  The only wood purchased was the Alder that makes up the framework.

For the back I had a piece of 8/4 Maple which was re-sawed then tongue and grooved so that it will float in the Alder frame to compensate for the change in humidity.  Since this chest will be in the shop that can become a problem when the monsoons arrive.

On the sides of the chest Maple was used as well but this time I left the panel in one piece.  In retrospect, I like the looks of the back and almost wished I'd treated the sides the same.  In this view you can see how the drawers were treated and also the finish that has that wonderful sheen.  Almost a shame that it'll spend it's life in a sawdust laden shop!

  The four shallow drawers will hold carving chisels.  Never again will I pull them out of the cabinet in their leather roll only to have one sneak out and fall onto the concrete floor!  The dividers are left-over slats, again from Connor's crib.  The top is hinged with brass rods topped with acorn nuts for that decorative touch.  Eventually it will have dividers to separate the planes, dovetail saw, and whatever else I decide to put in that space.

 Another skill I wanted to work on with this project is my carving.  I traced my #4 Smooth Plane onto a Cherry panel and this is the result.  Talking with one of my woodworker friends, Dennis, he mentioned how he likes to carve Cherry.  This was a challenge for me since I book matched the panel and it was a piece left over from a project that had some pretty gnarly grain in places.

All in all, I'm really pleased with how this chest turned out.  It'll fulfill the functions I needed and it kept me off the couch for quite a while -- that's always a good thing.

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