Hand Tools, Scott Meek, Tool Cabinet and Surround
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New Tool Cabinet: Building the Drawers, Part 2

Just a quick update on the tool cabinet. I have now completed three drawers and am working on the fourth. The process is pretty much the same as in my last post.

An issue I was facing which I wanted to correct for the remaining drawers was wood splitting when driving dowels into the drawer fronts and backs. See the photo below from my last blog post…

An unexpected issue.

An unexpected issue.

The fix for this has been to add the suggestions of both Greg Merritt and Pem at Clover Moon Designs who offered ideas in the comments. I changed dowels from 1/4″ cherry to 1/4″ fluted pine. I was using cherry to provide some contrasting color when looking at the drawer sides. The fluted pine dowels allow excess glue to escape the hole resulting in less pressure and force. The drawer fronts and backs are pine and pine can easily split.

I added a couple of extra steps: sanding the dowels a little to reduce the amount of force needed to drive them home (as is, the new dowels were pretty tight). Also, I was careful not to overload the dowel hole with glue. Some photos of the process…

Drawer 3 showing the various components minus the drawer bottom.

Drawer 3 showing the various components minus the drawer bottom.

The last drawer side in place; about to trim dowels and add clamps.

The last drawer side in place; about to trim dowels and add clamps.

Six clamps to bring everything tight.

Six clamps to bring everything tight.

Drawer three completed and sides planed to fit.

Drawer three completed and sides planed to fit.

Since my last post, I also went by City Hardwoods in Birmingham, Alabama, our new local hardwood dealer and picked up some sweet tiger maple…

Sweet curl in this maple.

Sweet curl in this maple.

This tiger maple will be added to the front of the drawer boxes hopefully providing a nice contrast to the cherry face frame. Below, the cabinet as it looks now. Slow progress, but progress none the less.

Drawer three in place with the parts for drawer four already cut.

Drawer three in place with the parts for drawer four already cut.

A close-up.

A close-up.

What’s in the bottom drawer, photo above? It’s my new Scott Meek Woodworks jointer plane kit.

The plane kit with blade and additional parts in the background.

The plane kit with blade and additional parts in the background.

This is a prototype of Scott’s upcoming jointer plane kit, previewed at a recent Lie Nielsen Toolworks open house…

I am wondering if I can cut it down to use as a jack plane. Something to think about. I stopped by Scott’s shop while in Asheville and he told me how to put it together, but I may still get his DVD before building it.

Anyway, I hope to have all of the middle drawers for my new tool cabinet completed in time for my next update.

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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).

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