Window Seat Bookcase
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Window Seat Bookcase: The Seat is Almost Complete

That rhymes: “the seat is almost complete.” I thought about making the title of this blog post “Window Seat Bookcase: The Seat, Part Twelve” even though this is the fourth post on the seat. Or “Part Bazillion and One” – because this step in the project has gone on, and on, and…

In fact, my first blog post concerning the seat was on January 10th. My next project will be much easier to build – I hear some pocket screws calling my name.

But, the end is in sight. Before I talk about the end, let’s take a look at this past week in the workshop. The goal in this next step is to create an expansion slot along the back edge of the bench seat and to form the seat ends. Take a look…

The bookcase with one leg and seat end removed.

The bookcase with one leg and seat end removed.

A close-up. Notice the notch in the lower seat back.

A close-up. Notice the notch in the lower seat back.

With a moderate dose of anxiety, I started cutting the notch (a dado is what it is) in what I am calling the lower seat back. I do not want a gap between the boundary of the notch and the seat where the seat slides into the notch, so the cut has to be precise.

There are three seat backs; this whole process took three consecutive evenings during the work week. It was time-consuming to make the straight cuts off the table saw follow the subtle undulation of the cherry lumber used for the seat. I decided to use an unconventional method for making minute adjustments to the path of the table saw cut…

Using a business card along with layers of tape as a shim.

Using a business card along with layers of tape as a shim.

The shim in use.

The shim in use.

It was about this point that my digital camera stopped working. Some pics in this post are via my iPhone and others are with my wife’s camera. This may be the opportunity I need to upgrade my camera to something better – like what my daughter has. Hummm…

The lower seat backs - notches completed.

The lower seat backs – notches completed.

Above, you see a very tight fit between the seat and the lower seat backs. A slight gap in the seat/rear leg joint in the leg closest to the camera. I am contemplating a patch for this, but I am also considering just leaving it as is.

The seat ends are next. Up until this point they have been over-sized blocks of cherry. Now comes some final shaping to these two parts which help give the bookcase a distinctive look. First, I printed a side view of the part via SketchUp and indicate the dimensions.

The seat end profile.

The seat end profile.

The seat end prior to clean-up.

The seat end prior to clean-up.

With the seat end profile cut just slightly larger than needed, it was then time to remove the saw marks and bring it down to final size. I did this mostly with a card scraper, but the right side seat end had some tear-out from some chisel work. I had to clean that up with an extra-fine rasp.

Saw marks cleaned up.

Saw marks cleaned up. Not glued in place yet.

Currently.

Currently.

So, the seat is almost complete – stuff left to do: sand the seat components one more time, then attach the seat ends with dowels and glue. One of the lower seat backs needs a little fine tuning. Add blocks so the seat can be attached to the bookcase. Only then will I have a finished seat.

But, before attaching the seat to the bookcase, I need to accomplish more glue-up of the bookcase frame. Right now, none of the cross members, aprons, etc. are glued in place. After the seat is completed, I’ll start final glue-up. Still a lot to do before my June 30th deadline.

* * * * *

Have a question or comment about this post? Leave me a comment below; but I also like email. Use my contact form to send me an email (click here).

This entry was posted in: Window Seat Bookcase
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During the week, I sell carpet and rugs for The Dixie Group. Weekends, you'll find me in my basement workshop making furniture.

4 Comments

    • Not so much about sanding, but finishing – yes. I just apply finish and hope for the best. I also am looking for a lower sheen finish. To me, even satin poly is to glossy.

      Concerning a cushion – yes. I had sourced some authentic Arts and Crafts fabric for a custom made cushion, but the stuff is extremely expensive. So something else will have to do, but there will definately be a cushion. 🙂

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