Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Making Wood Smaller

With rain in the forecast for the afternoon, I knocked off a little bit of painting before breakfast, and then after my second cup of coffee, headed outside to make big pieces of wood smaller. I've got two projects in my sights- a quick build of a pair of saw benches, and then a piece of furniture that should give me plenty to work on through the winter. It's a small bookcase with glass doors, out of cherry.

Making big wood smaller. The wood I am using started out looking like this:

Prunus Serotina (Black cherry)
(c) 2002 Steven J. Baskauf

I bought it milled from a man who lives just a mile or two from Louis Bromfield's Malabar Farm in central Ohio. This guy owns a small mill and saws lumber from trees on his own farm and those nearby.

I rough cut the pieces I will need and then fired up one of my few nods to modernity, a Dewalt surface planer. Most of the wood I use is either straight from the sawmill or sometimes rough planed, oversize. I spent about two hours planing up the pieces of wood to nearly-finish dimension. All finish work will be done by hand.

Here is the prodigious pile of shavings created by the Dewalt. This tool is used outside only!

And here is the resulting stack of lumber. It is now in my shop, where the moisture content will adjust from being outside in the garage to that of the house. I likely won't do much work between now and the holidays, but it's nice to know this beautiful cherry lumber is waiting for me in the shop.

This bookcase will be built along the lines of one built by Christian Becksvoort, which he detailed in an issue of Fine Woodworking magazine many years ago and which was reprinted in his book In the Shaker Style: Building Furniture Inspired by the Shaker Tradition (below).

No comments: