NBSS Week 16 – Completing the Shaker night stand, Windsor chair class part 1, and more toolbox progress

We returned on Monday after our holiday break and jumped right back into things, for me that meant putting the final touches on my shaker night stand. Over the holiday break I managed to put 3 coats of water based polyurethane on the base over the milk paint, and I also completed French polishing the top and applying shellac to the drawer. With these steps completed I moved on to sanding the final surfaces with 600 then 800 grit sandpaper and applying wax to buff the surfaces out to my desired sheen level. For this project I chose semi-gloss. Drumroll please…… and here’s the finished project!

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On Wednesday we got to start a new three week class with chair maker Peter Galbert. He specializes in Windsor chairs and for this class he designed a small chair for us to build to learn the process of building a chair with “green” wood.

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Up first for the class was riving out the rear spindle stock from freshly cut red oak stumps.

We then learned how to use the drawknife and the shave horse and began the process of shaping our newly rived stock into the shape and sized needed for the spindles in the rear of the seat.

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We also had to rive and shape the rear seat hoop, which we then learned how to steam bend to shape using a steam box and custom bending forms.

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Next, we moved to the lathe where we turned freshly cut maple blanks into the rough shape for our legs.

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After a few days of drying we returned to the lathe and again turned the maple legs, but this time closer to their final dimensions and shapes. (We’ll finalize the shapes by hand using a tool called a spokeshave later in the process.)

In between all of this other excitement I managed to complete a few more items on the toolbox. I cut all of the dovetails for the drawers and glued up the wood for the drawer bottoms.

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I also rough milled the lumber for my front panel and lid. Next week I plan to fit the drawer bottoms, glue the drawers together, and fit the drawers to the case, and we’ll have Part 2 of the Windsor chair class. Until then…

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