Basque Style Table: The Base Part 1

With the lumber milled I set to work on the two end assemblies.
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First step is to lay out the through mortises then chop them. The legs of the end assemblies are splayed at 7° so I marked that angle on the legs and set a bevel gauge to 7° as well to use as a guide while chopping. I drilled out the first two mortises with a brace and bit but found it no faster than chopping, not to mention the results weren’t as clean.

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I attacked this one joint at a time so I chopped a mortise, cut a tenon.

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When I had both legs mortised and tenoned I laid the lower stretcher across the legs and marked the intersection at the legs.

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More chopping and cutting and viola!

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One more time through that whole operation and both end assemblies were complete. I didn’t take any pictures but I draw bored the mortise and tenons so I wouldn’t need to clamp anything.

More soon…

Basque Style farm Table

I ran across this “basque style table” on Dorset custom furniture’s blog back in January and really loved the open trestle base. I tucked the idea away since I was in the middle of a move and would only temporarily be in my current location. But, when I found Fort Houston the possibility of actually being able to complete this table in a reasonable amount of time became a reality. I went to Mimms and bought 120 board feet of 8/4″ poplar and set to work on the base. This table was intended for my mother in law and I liked it so much I planned to build myself an 8 ft version when I completed her 10 footer. But, as often happens things changed. She was really looking for something long and semi-portable that could be set up in the yard on a whim for a family dinner under the maple trees. I pitched the idea of making the 10 foot top as planned and then making a couple “fancy saw horses” for her 10 ft top and then making the base an appropriate size for an 8 foot table for my family. She loved the idea and so we moved ahead. The original plan had the entire table built out of poplar and finished clear but I thought the basque style base would look great painted black. So I plan to build the base, paint it black and make a top from cherry. And, then build a 10 foot top from poplar with matching poplar saw horses. The 10 foot poplar top will use the mitered frame style table top while my 8 ft cherry top will be a standard bread board end table top.

So, like every project this one started with lots of milling, milling, milling. Two 5-hour-days later I had all my material milled and ready for joinery.

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Fort Houston

Blogging has been slow but I have been busy. I joined a local co-op, Fort Houston, to have access to a jointer and planer. The co-op is great! They were gifted $35,000 worth of Jet machinery. The shop has two jointers, a 6″ with a segmented cutter head and a straight knife 12″. A 15″ planer with a segmented cutter head. Two lathes, 10″ and 12″ table saws, a couple drill presses, spindle, disc and belt sanders, two bandsaws, a 14″ and 18″. All for $125/month!

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20140316-110817.jpg I’ve been busily milling lumber for the 10ft farm table project and my busted roubo. More soon.

A few things in the works

I’m currently in the planning stages of a 10 foot dining room table build. We picked up the 6/4 and 8/4 stock from Mimms lumber a few days ago.

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I’m also peeling apart my failed roubo lamination, scraping and regluing the boards back together. My buddy and I glued up the two tops a month ago but cold temps kept the glue from curing. I suspected this was the case and after moving the tops to franklin and leaving them to sit the boards in the top began to cup and delaminate. So, one at a time I’ve been peeling them apart, scraping off the failed glue, re-jointing and re-gluing.

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Panel sized rip saw progress

I scraped and sanded the handle and it’s more or less ready for finishing and managed to drill the bolt holes without a drill press. The saw plate holes were another story! I’ve never worked much with metal and the hardness of the 1095 spring steel amazed me. I burnt through a carbide tipped drill bit drilling just one hole. I ended up getting a Bosch masonry bit that managed to get through but still with a lot of effort. I was able to scavenge some saw bolts from some old cheap beater saws. Behold, it looks like a saw!

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A buddy of mine found me a nice antique saw vice from an antique shop for $8 and tonight it was pressed into service. I used a Stanley 42w saw set to add some set and with two passes with a file the saw was set, sharp and ready to cut!

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Panel saw handle

I’ve been slowly making a pair of 20″ panel saws for bench work. I picked up some plates from tgiag.com awhile back. One is punched 10ppi crosscut and the other is 7 ppi rip. I thought I’d make contrasting handles so I could see at a glance which is which. Months ago I finished a walnut handle and today I finally got around to making a curly maple handle.

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The handle is modeled after the Disston D7 panel saw handle. I roughed out the blank on the bandsaw. Using three gramercy rasps I roughly shaped the handle. I know there are a million ways to cut the plate kerf but I like to keep it simple and just use a tenon saw.

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If you take your time and follow your line well, I find it isn’t too hard to get good results.

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There is still a lot more sanding and shaping to go…

Mike Pekovitch Tea Box

I came across FWW art director Mike Pekovitch’s blog and immediately fell in love with his white oak tea box.

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I brought a small quarter sawn white oak board when I moved the shop with the intentions of using it to build this piece. With the stock flattened and cut to length and thicknessed to 3/8″, I marked out the dovetails and set to work.

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Since the tops and bottoms were quarter sawn and only around 4″ in width I choose to just glue the top and bottom on. We will see.

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I cut the curly maple pieces for the interior of the box to length and shot the miters on a shooting board.

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This is were the project stands. I need to soften the dovetails further and figure out this whole fuming thing.