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Custom Desk 

Custom Desk - page five

  After building the desk and attaching the legs and granite we started on the drawer. Seems we always end up making furniture with curved drawer fronts. Some day I'll get to use my Leigh Dovetail jig! But not here. The front of the drawer is not only curved to match the desk, it also has angled ends for create a tight fit to the desk itself.


We cut the blank out of solid stock, see photo one, using the band saw, but first we mitered the ends, as it's much easier to do on straight lumber. After it was band sawed, we used a cabinet scraper to clean it up.

  Drawer Fitting  Custom Desk - page five  Dovetailed Drawer


  Dovetailed Drawer   Tools used to dovetail drawer

To make the dovetails and pins we used a Fret saw, which is basically a elongated coping saw, and a beautiful hand saw from www.Lie-Nielsen.com .The hand saw was used for the straight side cuts, and the fret saw was used to cut the bottoms of the joint. This is a very quick and easy method to make dovetails, and is very accurate. Notice we cut a board long enough to cut in half, after the dovetails for the back were cut. This makes it much easier to keep track of which end goes where. The front joint itself was laid out with a scribe, and then chiseled out using the Japanese wood chisels shown. These particular chisels are available from www.toolsforworkingwood.com. They are very fine chisels, and are not outrageous in cost.  

Cutting a dovetail in a curve can be somewhat intimidating, but looks worse than it actually is. As always, cut the joint smaller than needed and sneak up on your layout lines with a sharp chisel. Paring a joint in this fashion is a good idea on any joint. The finest joints of all are done using this paring method.

Testing the drawer  testing the drawer for fit

After the drawer was completed, tested and fit properly, we veneered the face using hot hide glue. Once this was completed, we routed a bead on the top and bottom edge. Prior to routing, we cut the face of the veneer with a mortise layout tool. This helps to prevent tear out on the veneer.

Veritas Marking Gauge 

Continued page six

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