Tag Archives: rabbets

Small box for Kate…Parts 5 & 6…

WOW! It’s been a busy a few days in my shop. I’ve gotten a lot done. I lengthened the groove in each of the long side pieces, so that the corners of the bottom would fit. I also planed and smoothed the bottom a little more. Sat morning I glued the sides and bottom together.

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Over the last few weeks I’ve been reading Handplane Essentials by Chris Schwarz. He writes several times about the advantages of a cambered iron for a jointer and smoothing plane. While my glue was drying, I sharpened my irons while adding a slight curve at the corners. It only takes a couple of thousandths on each side. This radius prevents the irons’ corners from digging in and leaving a plane track. Something you don’t want from a smoother for sure. I haven’t used my jointer much since then, but if it’s anything like the smoother, I’m sure it will be dramatic.

Once the sharpening was finished, if carefully positioned the blade so the camber was centered in the middle of the mouth. I then took a panel off cut from my first step stool, adjusted the blade to take a light cut and gingerly began to smooth this panel. Previously with this panel, I had a lot of problems with grain tear out and general unwillingness to plane. Not so now. The difference was dramatic. I’m not sure if you can tell from this picture, but the surface is as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

20140302-220803.jpg I was able to remove tear out and completely smooth both sides, without plane tracks. I was amazed. I then went to work on Kate’s small box.

20140302-221030.jpg Same result. A near glass smooth surface with no track marks. It should finish up beautifully. I was able to smooth my tails and pins with no trouble at all.

A little over a year ago when I began my hand tool adventure, my Pop gave me a Jack plane of his that he never could get to work. His heart was in the right place, but the plane is a piece of crap. Yet, I learned a ton about planes from it because I had to do so much to it to get it to work. So I felt pretty confident in my plane skills early on. When I bought Handsaw Essentials, I ordered Handplane Essentials based on Megan Fitzpatrick’s recommendation. I thought I might find a couple of good things in it. HA! I’m a goob. I now realize I know squat about hand planes. Buy the book, you’ll be glad you did. I am.

Next up for this project was a lid. And I wanted one you can take on and off easily and looks half way decent. I went with the idea of a rabbet on the inside to locate the lid appropriately and a small raised panel on the top. Sun I made it as far as the rabbet on the inside surface.

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20140302-223005.jpg It also sits nicely on the box.

Fri was an especially nice day because I received some new tools from Lie-Nielsen, a large shoulder plane and two floats.

20140302-223248.jpg I haven’t had a chance to use the floats, but a little one for the shoulder plane. It’s a finely made tool, just what you would expect from Lie-Nielsen. I honed a small secondary bevel on the blade and tried it out on this lid. It’s easy to adjust and certainly squares up a shoulder and cheek. More later as I get additional time with it. Tomorrow I will raise a panel on the lid and hopefully wrap this project up in a couple of days. Stay warm, dry, and safe.
-Charlie

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Step Stool for Zeke…Part 7…

Gosh, part 7! You’re probably as tired of reading about this darn thing as I am about working on it. But I’m too far into it now to quit. I’m gonna finish this step stool one way or the other. First item on the to do list after work today was to finish the plumbing problem from last night that didn’t get fixed. My kitchen sink was stopped up and my buddy Wayne Barnett took care of me.

Next, I cut a shallow rabbet on each of the lower steps. And they both went very smooth, kind of surprised me.

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I’m definitely becoming more comfortable and confident in cutting rabbets with a chisel. I have 3 paring chisels and they are my tool of choice for this job. Their long flat face allows me to go from one end to the other very efficiently without having to move the work or the chisel.

I then laid out tails on the upper step of one panel and called it a night.

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One reason is I’m not too sure about this configuration. It just doesn’t look right i think. The outboard pins are way bigger than the two on the inside. And I usually like to have my tails and pins a little more even. I may have to go with more tails. Check back tomorrow. I’m going to lay out some other variations. Be safe.
-Charlie

Step Stool for Zeke…Part 6…

My next task for this project was to cut a shallow rabbet on the INSIDE of the tails. Can you guess what I did? Yep, the very first rabbet I cut was on the wrong side. I should’ve checked my reference mark. I had two choices now: 1) Redo my reference mark and proceed as if nothing had happened. This choice is the easiest too. 2) Keep my reference mark but lower the height of the upper step about 1/2″. I chose 1). At this point there are so many things I will do different in the future on the next ones that it really doesn’t matter now. This step stool is like my first wife, a practice one. 😜 I know, I know, that comment was bad. It’s not her fault I was an immature idiot. But that’s a whole other story!

After scribing my gage line, I came back with a chisel and made a little cut up to this line. And then used my skewed rabbet plane to cut the shallow rabbet. Except this rabbet plane and I do not get a long well at all.

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I envision nice curly shavings coming out as I cut across the grain. Not. I get splinters. Might as well use a chisel, so I did. I think I need remedial rabbet plane work because I’m quicker with the chisel. At any rate, the shallow rabbets on the INSIDE of the tails are done.

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Check back tomorrow, I’m going to lay out the tails and start cutting them. More to come.
-Charlie