1. Hi Travis,

      Paul says:
      Different makers made their ⅛” chisels with different profiles. Some had wider sections which added to the strength. ⅛” chisels when they’re too thin from back to front are indeed too fragile.

      Kind Regards,

  1. I think that’s the first time I’ve ever seen Paul show how to actually tweak an out-of-square box. He’s mentioned tweaking the clamps before, but never demonstrated. This was very helpful. When I built my toolbox, I was about 1/16th out of square, but couldn’t figure out how to get it back in square before the glue began to set. I ended up planing the outside of my drawers to match the inside of the carcass. So while the inside of the drawers are square, the outsides are slightly off to match the carcass inside. I think I’m the only one who can really tell; it’s almost invisible if you don’t realize the error is there.

    I love to see how Paul fixes things when they don’t go quite as planned. We so often learn more from fixing our mistakes than when things go together perfectly.

    1. Ditto to this….also the tweaking of the drawer stops. Can’t explain it but I really like seeing the things that don’t go quite as planned and the associated remedies.

      Maybe it’s because these little things happen often with me and so it’s nice to see they also happen to the best of us.

  2. When placing the clamps, shouldn’t we be carefull not to placing them on the dovetails, since accidentally they can be glued to them, if there’s any that squeezes outside?
    And when applying shellac, isn’t it necessary to apply it also on the inside of the carcass, to level out with the outside and to prevent any kind of moisture?
    And on the sides of the drawers, why only the dovetails have shellac, and not all the way through?


    1. Hi Antonio,

      Paul says:

      No it’s not really an issue, because by the time we’ve come to clamping the glue is usually no longer gluing because we wiped it off with our fingers. I never have an issue with clamping this way.

      No it is not necessary to apply on the inside as the joinery is constraining everything so there will be no issue. We generally only do the area around the joints, this is for appearance. Sometimes applying finish to the drawer sides ends up causing friction and thereby jamming when the drawer is moved in and out.

      Kind Regards,

  3. Hi Paul. That looks like a great project. I will definitely have a go. I have always wondered why the back end board of a drawer is positioned so far from the back of a drawer. Surely it wastes capacity. Maybe it is traditional but there is usually a reason for tradition.
    Thanks for all that you and your team do . You restore a bit of sanity to this mad world.
    Mick Adley.

    1. Hi Mick,

      Paul says:
      Yes, the reason we do this is so that when we pull the drawer out, the extensions at the back allow cantilevering when we open the drawer fully and this means we can see all the way back to the inside of the drawer without it dropping out.

      Kind Regards,

      1. Sorry if I missed it… I keep scrolling through the drawer videos looking and can’t seem to identify how Paul attaches the back of the drawer to the two sides, it looks like it’s just glued. Why not wedged mortise and tenon? It seems like there isn’t enough long grain connection to ensure a strong bond. Maybe the sides of the carcasses keep enough pressure on the sides?

        1. Hi Peter,

          Paul says:

          There is no reason for this not to hold for 100 years as the pressure from within the drawer to the outside is as minimal as it can get. Whereas, I use the mortise and tenon on many of my drawer sides, this is not at all common practise, in fact I introduced it to my work 40 years ago, based on my devising this as a signature of my work. That’s not to say I invented it, I just had never seen it in anyone else’s work. I say this, to defuse the incorrect assumption, that this is a commonly applied practise, it’s not. However, as a result of our work, it has become more and more common.

          Kind Regards,

  4. Loved this project and it is on my list to do.
    As one who worked with leather in foot wear might I suggest that you skive one end of the strap to make it easier to thread though the slot in the drawer front.

  5. I’m just getting to the end of this project – lots of learning but great fun. However I have a question:

    I’m obviously being a bit dim here but I don’t understand what the screws at the back of the drawer are for. If
    1) the bottom is glued at the front
    2) the expansion makes the bottom move with respect to the back of the drawer
    3) the bottom is held by the slot in the two sides
    4) the screws are not tight so the bottom can expand past the back of the drawer
    what do the screws do?

    1. Hi Dave,

      Paul says:
      This is a good question because it is not too obvious, if the bottom is glued at the front, this means that the tongue is always in the groove. Putting screws at the back does seem to constrain the drawer bottom, however there is enough absorption in the wood and flex in the screw/hole region to accommodate the minor amount of movement that will occur. The danger zone is usually in the first few weeks of being made because wood loses its elasticity after its first year. I used the screws primarily to solidify the hole and take out and rattle.

      Kind Regards,

  6. This is my second project ever and I’m close to finishing it. The whole project had been like a school course for me… “I learned a lot” just don’t give the right idea.

    Now: I’m very new to woodwork. Why does exactly the drawer bottom must not be glued?
    I have an idea about wood movements, but more info would help. Wood movements are still quite misterious to me.
    Would it be different if the bottom would be in plywood?
    Thanks for your kind answer and for your great job.

  7. @VALENTINA There’s really no reason why you would need to glue a drawer bottom. When working with solid wood, you must allow for expansion and contraction along the width (not the length) with changing humidity levels. And you’re right, this does not happen with plywood but even so, just a couple of screws in the back would suffice.


Leave a Reply