Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Cabinet stand...(completed)

When I last left off I was continuing work on the components of the cabinet stand. As discussed earlier I decided to lighten the upper rails and instead use smaller stretchers and rails towards the lower part of the stand. This effectively maintains the strength of the stand while reducing the size of the horizontal components of the stand. Since the stretchers are fairly small in dimension I decided to use dowels to attach the stretchers to the legs and to the lower shorter rails. The criticality of getting the measurements right cannot be stressed when creating these components. They need to fit together in unison at the time of gluing so dry-fitting becomes important. This I did. I also make sure to place a slight clamping force against each of the joints to reproduce the tightness of a normally clamped joint.

Transferring the upper spacing to the lower stretchers of the stand involves the use of large squares. The squares are used to confirm that all the lower components of the stand are perfectly perpendicular to each other. Once I have the top of the stand clamped I can begin to mark and measure the lower stretchers. The lower rails, on the other hand, are effectively the same length as the upper rails so this is not an issue. Once the components are cut I mark out the dowel holes and transfer these markings to the legs.

The criticality of all the dimensions for the stand are important since this particular design needs to be exactly the same in width and depth as the actual cabinet. Therefore, the leg dimensions need to be subtracted from the rail lengths. This is another step where some clamping pressure is necessary to reproduce the final tensioned assembly. In these photos, I have the components laid out, then the stand is clamped using fairly lightweight clamps to eliminate the introduction of any unnecessary tension in the stand while it is being clamped. I had earlier assembled and glued the sides of the cabinet stand first to minimize the craziness of clamping many components simultaneously. Those of you that have done this can relate. The cabinet stand is now complete and ready for finishing. I have confirmed the dimensions are correct and it is so nice when this works out well. The cherry is a light pink color now but while slowly become darker as the days go by, aging to that beautiful cherry color we are familiar with. This provides a great contrast to the lighter cabinet above.