Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Worbench Part V - Mortise Layout and Long Rail Milling

Happy New Years everyone!  Been a little while since the last post but I've had some time to get back into the shop now that we're back into the usual patterns.  The holiday break was very nice with Stella and I taking a daddy/daughter trip back to see the grandparents and Alex making over Stella's room in our absence.  We had one surprised kid when we got back!

Back in the shop, I got to work laying out the mortises for the short rails.  I used the tenons I had already cut to help lay them out and referenced everything from the bottom of the legs.  There is one mortise on the wide side of each leg for the bottom short rail and one for the upper short rail. 

With the short rail mortises laid out, my next step was to mill down the lumber for the long rails.  The wood had been acclimating in the shop for about a month so was ready to go.  I did an initial milling one evening, bring everything to about 1/4" of final dimensions. After letting them rest for another couple of days I milled them to final dimension and cut them to length.  The next step will be to cut the long rail tenons and finish laying out the mortises.

It's kind of slow going but I'm feeling pretty confident that this bench is going to last a lifetime.  Looking at that pile of wood in the last picture I think to myself, "Man that is just for the base of this thing!"  It's got to weigh close to 150-200 lbs which means this bench will be able to take a beating and keep on going.  Talk to you soon.