Sofa Server: Episode 4

Sofa Server Episode 4 Keyframe

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Once the surfaces are cleaned up and any defects dealt with, the internal areas are finished, as they won’t be accessible later. Then the glue up commences and it’s ready for the finishing touches.

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10 Comments

  1. wdelliott on 12 July 2018 at 9:22 am

    What about a piece of wood to clamp dovetails, but that have the Pin impressions cut into the clamping wood, so that there is secure clamping of the joint? You worked around the problem by clamping beneath the dovetail. Is it worth creating the special wood pieces described?

    • harry wheeler on 12 July 2018 at 11:23 pm

      Actually, he was clamping under the tails and that isn’t normally required. He took a little off the pin board when he was fitting the joint and that might have caused a slight gap. Bottom line is don’t over think it. If it happens, grab a piece of scrap and deal with it.

    • Ed on 13 July 2018 at 2:09 pm

      Clamping cauls for dovetails are quite common. They don’t need to be fancy. As you described, you just hack out sections to relieve the pins and put pressure on the tails.

      As for when to use them, it’s a judgement call. The larger the joint, the more likely it is to use them. On a dovetailed blanket chest, I wouldn’t glue up without them. You’ll be fine most of the time, but there are enough pins and tails that glue up will take some time and, if something swells or seizes, the cauls can save you and it would be too late to cut them at that point. On a simpler dovetail, it’s not an issue because the glue up goes faster and because, if you get into trouble, you only have one or two tails and you can monkey in a bit of scrap wood.

      Just remember that squeeze out can glue your caul to the work. You can put painters tape on the caul, but that can cause its own set of problems. It usually helps, though.

  2. John Orrin on 12 July 2018 at 10:25 pm

    I am glad I am not the only one who has trouble with Clamp handles falling out of the adjustment bar of those types of sash clamps the stupid plastic ends are only pushed on. Very annoying when glueing up. I think the best idea will be to cut a thread at each end and screw a nut on. What do you think. By the way loving this project.

    • Brian M on 13 July 2018 at 5:24 am

      A little drop of rubber cement does a pretty good job of keeping the plastic ends from falling off.

      • Rowdy Whaleback on 21 July 2018 at 11:08 am

        Get rid of the plastic ends and smash flat the metal ends between two hammers (use the side of a lump hammer as an anvil), I’m pretty sure Paul showed this in his clamp customising vid.

  3. joeleonetti on 13 July 2018 at 5:49 am

    Thanks Paul for the extra added info on the fixing of the minor issues before applying the finish. Also, thanks for gong over in detail how to apply this different finish type.

  4. Sam Lc on 13 July 2018 at 6:47 am

    Excellent episode. Part about dealing with defects especially helpful. Also, the production quality is great. Thanks Paul and team.

  5. Michael Ostrander on 16 July 2018 at 4:57 am

    I’ve made a bunch of these over the years to help with clamping dovetails. The word you’re looking for is a caul. Made all of mine on a table saw but couldn’t tak more than a few minutes with a saw and a chisel. Great way to make sure that the tails seat properly and they protect from marring the project as well. It might feel like you need another hand to make them work but I’ve used carpet tape or a glue gun to hold the cauls in place while you’re setting the clamps.

  6. robert nixon on 29 October 2019 at 2:52 am

    “Im just using a water-born wood finish and its for floors, and i have found that its the same from the furniture finish. somebody will correct me on that.”
    oh Paul you know us so well!

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