The bench is really coming along now, thanks to having a bit more time this week to get things done (and it being far too cold to do much outdoor work too!).
I made the wedges which will sit next to the top of each leg in a recess cut in the back of the apron:
Then started chiselling the recess waste away, working to a knife wall initially:
Once the rough chiselling was completed it was time to use the router plane to get that nice level surface for the recess:
After all that, a completed recess housing – actually came out a LOT better than I was expecting – and what’s more, the leg and wedge fitted exactly, first time, with no trimming needed at all. Still can’t quite believe it, in fact…
And then, a magic moment after all these weeks, the first assembly of the skeleton of the bench to make sure everything fitted correctly and so that I can now bolt the aprons through the legs:
The small cut out at the underside of each rail is to allow for the nut to fit onto the bolt which will protrude at this point. The rails were effectively a little too deep – to clear the bottom of the rail I’d have been putting the bolt through within only 10mm of the bottom edge of the apron. No worries though, now it will work fine.
Another productive afternoon in the shed – got the aprons bolted through the legs and the bench top edge grooved and glued to the front apron.
First use ever of this Stanley 13-050 – not one cutter had ever seen use it appears. Seems like the sort of item someone woodworking as a hobby might be given as a present by a well-meaning relative, but never use as they have more ‘modern’ methods. Ideal for me though, and I have to say that it worked really well.
Ploughing the 6mm wide by 10mm groove in the bench top edge. I fitted a Sapele strip to the metal fence, partly to make it easier to keep square to the top, and partly to avoid marking the wood.
Gluing the bench top piece to the front (furthest away in the photo) apron – you can see the completed groove too.
Next up is to groove the rear of the rear apron, then rebate the wellboard to fit both grooves.
Yesterday I did the wellboard rebate. It started off as a bit of a nightmare with a Rebate plane that had a cutting iron which kept resetting after every stroke – and it appears that it’s caused because it was a WS 78 which has a brass(?) lever cap that bends when the screw is tightened.
So I dug out my backup plan, a Stanley 78, and that worked brilliantly. Got nice even shavings all the way along every time, and only very minor resetting after maybe every ten strokes or so, a huge improvement.
Then today I worked on the vice cutout in the apron using a jigsaw – to fit a Record 53A, so it’s a biggie. I made the cutout considerably larger than really needed to make fitting much easier, and was able to trial fit it on my own with the bench right way up.
Well almost completed the bench, just need to apply a finish to the legs and rails – anyone any suggestions on what might work/look best for this? I’ve put one coat of Ronseal Antique Oil on the benchtop and aprons, another coat or two to go – this doesn’t darken it much but protects and seals it quite well.
Forgot to show the completed wellboard end in my previous post:
Vice installed and ready for action:
General view of vice side and far side of bench as it stands now:
[quote quote=483089]A newbee huh? Great work from anyone. Everything looks so crisp, you either have natural talent or the patients of a clam.
Well thank you – I think I do have a lot of patience, for sure – not so sure about talent though!
Today I finally got the bench what I’d call ‘finished’ – although I may add a drawer at some point in the future.
Although Mr Sellers recommended the use of Garden Furniture Oil, I decided to go old school on this one and use Shellac (Button Polish mix). I made an initial coat, rubbed it all down with 600 grit sandpaper and then applied a further coat, both coats by brush application.
I also made a small shelf (also from pine) which sits along the side of the rear apron, with various size holes cut through using my Record Power Forstner bit set, at intervals to accommodate my marking gauges, plus a small space to hold the oil cloth can and some glueing sticks etc. I stuck felt down each side of the holes so as to avoid rattling and movement when using the bench, and leather for the cans to sit on.
Anyway, here’s the final result:
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