Thursday, August 4, 2011

Drawer fitting...

I completed the dovetails for each of the three drawers and began the meticulous work of assembling the drawers and fitting them to their respective compartments in the cabinet. Sometimes when I begin to saw and carve out dovetail joints I can go on and on, it is such a peaceful and fulfilling process. I never tire of staring at very good, tight dovetail joints. A few of the steps involved in assembling and fitting drawers are fitting the drawer sides to the drawer fronts. The sides need to be square to the fronts in two planes.

I created rabbets in each of the drawer sides as well as the fronts of each drawer. The back of the drawer has an opening which allows me to slide a custom fit drawer bottom in and pin it to the drawer back. This is a time-proven technique which allows me to replace the drawer bottom if necessary at some point in the future. It also allows for wood movement as the drawer bottom grain orientation is front to back and such is not placing any undue stress on the drawer itself.

The fitting procedure is a bit time-consuming as this is part of the process and a necessary one. I have a couple of the drawer dimensions ever so slightly oversize to allow me to tune the fit to the compartment. Better slightly oversized than undersized. I handplane the sides down to fit the compartment and lightly trim the top and bottom as well. One of the drawers to the right has a lower lip which also needs to be tune to the bottom drawer top, to create a minimal gap yet provide an allowance for wood movement. The drawer bottoms, which I have yet to create, will have rabbeted sides to fit the drawer grooves. This allows me to maintain a thicker drawer bottom yet rabbeted to fir the sides and front of the drawer. I'll continue on with this procedure and begin to give thought to the drawer pulls.

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