Author Topic: My first furniture project ever -  (Read 4450 times)

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Offline JP

  • Posts: 16
My first furniture project ever -
« on: June 14, 2007, 05:08 PM »
Ok fellas,  I 've been waiting to post these pics.  This is my first "fine" piece of furniture that started from rough stock obtained at my local hardwoods store.  I made a few mistakes of course, but fortunately, I was able to fix or hide most of them.  In no particular order, they consisted of missplaced mortises and some square up issues resulting from uneven clamp pressure on the top and subsequent frame glue up.

It's an African Mahogany nightstand for my wife.  All the joints were made with the domino as well as the edge joints on the top.  I'm in the process of testing finishes before its complete.

The top is attached using a method I gleaned from Bill Esposito, whereby I used the domino to bore apron mortises and then screwed maple clips to the top that slid into the mortises.  I also used the domino to make the drawers - domi-drawers as they seem to be known as around here.  (That was probably the most frustrating part of the whole project).

Any comments/criticisms are welcome..


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Offline Jim Dailey

  • Posts: 278
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2007, 06:07 PM »
Jason very nice first project!!

Your going to have a productive future.

Nice work!!!
Life is just a series of projects...

Offline Timmy C

  • Posts: 462
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2007, 06:32 PM »
Dude, very nice 1st project indeed.  That should win you some points with the "war department."  I would go for a new tool based on merit with that one. 

For your next project, make sure you will need to utilize a tool that is not in your shop.  I teach a night class on how to hide tools from your significant other Thursday nights.  If you need any pointers, let me know.  Or better yet, post a "poll" or solicit advice from FOG members.  I am sure there are many of us with some tricks up our sleeves. 

Nice job!  The Khaya looks great against that beautiful floor to boot!

Timmy C

Offline Brent b

  • Posts: 89
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2007, 08:40 PM »
Congratulations, you've made something beautiful and honored the spirit of the tree (or so Japanese craftsmen believe).
i bought in
it's paid off
i'm going home

Offline Rob McGilp

  • Posts: 430
  • Curmudgeon
    • Damn Fine Furniture
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2007, 01:44 AM »
Hi Jason,
Your table looks very sweet, or should that be "way wicked"?
I've attached some pictures of a Kitchen Work Bench made almost entirely of African Mahogany. It's such a beautiful timber and they grow it in the Top End of Aus.
The first pic is at day one, the others are 15 months later. I used a hard burnishing oil, as we use it for food preparation daily. The same effect will result from Scandinavian Oil or to a lesser extent from Danish oil.
The surface was sanded to 240g then oil added and friction sealed into the wood using an RO150FEQ through 400, 600, 800 and 1200g. There is no wax, polyester or shellac on the bench. Using a wax or WOP finish would significantly enhance the colour and brightness. Have a look at the small knots (eyes) and imagine them twice as sharp and bright after the wax.

The Mahogany really does come up well with oil.



Offline Matthew Schenker

  • Posts: 2619
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2007, 09:22 AM »
Great project, and thanks for describing how you used Festool tools to accomplish it!  I'm also happy to see you were able to get help from the forum on Domidrawers (is that becoming an official term?).

It looks like Jason might be a candidate for Topic Contest #5 (CLICK HERE).

If you get a chance, please post some more photos.  Maybe some close-ups of the Domidrawers.

So, what's your next project going to be?

Thank you again for posting!

Stay in touch,
FOG Designer and Creator

Offline John Langevin

  • Posts: 245
  • Springfield, MA
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2007, 11:13 AM »
Both of you gentlemen, great projects. Jason I really like the 'pinwheel' style top on yours, I couldn't tell exactly from the photo, are the four long pieces book-matched? Regarding the finish on the kitchen work table would the oil adhere if you first sealed the wood with Zinnser "Bullseye" Amber shellac? I have used it under lacquer finishes and it really seems to help the grain "pop".
« Last Edit: June 17, 2007, 11:41 AM by John Langevin »
Practicing Mediocrity Never Begets Perfection

Offline JP

  • Posts: 16
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2007, 12:30 PM »
Thanks for the kind words guys.  Here are some pics of the domi-drawers

TimmyC:  This is my down payment on my wife's forbearance.  I bought a lot of tools this past year.  ;D
I figure, three or four more pieces of furniture might get me to the point where I can buy some more tools.  Here is my list in order of importance, in case you were wondering:
MFT 1080, OF1400, Trion, Rotex 125, sanding station, and the Kapex (if its comes out).
This is what I have to "pay off":  Domino plus, CT33, Rotex 150, TS 55, Jet Jointer, 13" Ridgid Planer, TS2400 Ridgid Table Saw, Incra 1000SE miter guage, and a Delta Band saw.

Albert, thanks for the pics and the advice on finishes.  I am currently testing a teak oil which is slightly dull and Arm-R-seal semi-gloss oil and urethane topcoat from General Finishes.

Matt, the new pics are below.  As far as my next project, there are several in the que.  The first, to pay my debt, is an outdoor table and chairs which I wanted to make with Port Orford cedar.  I haven't been able to find an East coast supplier, nor a west coast supplier who will ship it.  I probably will have to settle for something local (MD).  Other projects include a computer work center, several wall cabinets for closets, a kitchen island, a large router table, new kitchen cabinets, a window seat, a knee wall bookcase, a potting table, a new nauseum.

John, nothing was book matched, at least intentionally. In my haste to complete my first project, I didn't plan as well as I should have.  I am pleased with the results nonetheless, but in my next project, I will be sure to get some 8/4 and 12/4 for the thicker pieces like the legs. In this case, I simply glued up 5/4. Satisfactory, but aethestically, it could have been better.

Offline Rob McGilp

  • Posts: 430
  • Curmudgeon
    • Damn Fine Furniture
Re: My first furniture project ever -
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2007, 04:32 PM »
Greetings all,

Firstly, JP I hope you didn't think I was hijacking your thread. I just wanted to show how well the oil brings up the depth.
John, I'm not sure that oiling after shellacing would help much. What may be worthwhile is using a Talc or Tripoli powder slurry to give a very fine cut to the shellac or poly/acrylic sealer.
We have a product in Aus, which I believe is now available in the US called "EEE paste", produced by a company called UBeaut. After finishing the oil layer, you could use this to give a really polished finish, which gives real depth to the timber, then seal with the plastic. If you want you could do it again immediately prior to your final coat of sealer. If you look at the box I have posted in this forum, on behalf of the four people who made it, you can see what I mean. Just substitute poly for wax.