Sunday, July 06, 2014

Weaklings need not apply

There's no rest for the weary - so I'm on to the next project. My back hurts just looking at this initial sketch of it - with its beefy legs and huge components. 

I've turned my iPhone into a "time clock" so that I can keep track of my hours... in this case, I started this project on May 11. Damn, I love technology! 

Because the legs were so beefy, I knew I'd have a hard time trimming the ends flush after they were laminated. Even my 14" radial arm saw couldn't cut through this in one pass!

So these legs were glued together at their exact length - no trimming necessary.

Once they were squared up on the jointer, I determined the length of the aprons and stretchers connects them together. 

And then the fun began!  

I bought a Domino XL just for building this piece - but after using it just once - I know I'll get a lot of mileage out of this tool. The floating tenons are massive - and inserting two of them into each apron gives this kitchen island more than enough strength. 

Laying out and cutting all of these joints took about two hours - saving me an incredible amount of time and labor. Had I cut mortise and tenon joints - my time would've been quadrupled. In fact, I might still be standing at the mortiser, instead of writing this blogpost!

I did a little rough assembly to make sure everything fit together - it was spot on. 

Thanks, Festool! 

Here are the sides are assembled independently - they're unbelievably heavy, and I was already starting to sweat over the thought of the final assembly. But my buddy John pulled through for me - I texted him at the last minute and asked if he could lend me a hand. He was at my shop within 20 minutes, and we clamped and grunted and coaxed this piece together. Trust me– this was not a job for weaklings! 

(Thanks John - I owe you!)

Unlike my last commission - this piece should be a breeze to finish. I'm going to add a half-shelf underneath, and distress the wood, so it looks weathered. 

After that– all that's needed is some stain and plywood top - so that a gorgeous piece of granite can be dropped over the top of this. I sure as hell hope they don't have to move this thing once it's finished - I can't even begin to guess the weight! 

I should probably just break down and buy stock in the company that manufactures Advil - it's becoming a daily necessity!

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