Mark ( on May 14th, 2009

Well  I am still at work here in Franklin, Indiana at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking.  The Hunt Board class has certainly been a marathon of woodworking…sometimes bordering on speed-woodworking.

I did not update you with a post yesterday because I was attending the traditional school dinner that is put on during each week long class. at the school.  After the dinner students are treated to a slide show and/or demonstration by each of the visiting instructors for that week.  This was a great event not only because of the camaraderie that it fosters between the students but also because it provides additional inspiration to the students by exposing them to other aspects of woodworking that they may not have considered.  Certainly it’s a great marketing tool for Marc Adams to promote the school.

fitting-tenonschopping-back-mortisesYesterday was spent fitting tenons on the case.  Lot’s of mortises and tenons…did I mention how many mortises and tenons are in this thing?  In fact as of the close of the day yesterday, I was uncertain if we would even near completion.  We also chopped out the mortises on the back of the case and created the tenons on the back of the interior partitions.  Lots of chopping, planing, chiseling, paring and fitting later it was finally time to dry fit the entire case and move on the glue up.

steve-hamilton-glue-demofront-center-glue-upThe glue-up was a several step process.  We started with the center of the front of the case including the bridle-jointed top rail.  Steve Hamilton, Jeff Headley’s partner in business and the second instructor in the class demoed the process for this glue up.  In the pictures you can see that two cauls from the center scroll were saved in order to assist in the glue-up and to avoid over-stressing the scroll and possibly cracking it.

complete-front-glue-uptop-glue-upNext , the remainder of the front of the case was glued up.  We were very careful to not apply too much pressure with the clamp across the top because it could easily bow the assebmly.  I did not get a picture, but at the same time, the back and back legs were also glued up.  This was a fairly straight-forward glue up because the back is a solid 3/4″ thick and the tenons had been pre-fit.  If things were not so hectic I would have snapped a picture of the completed case glue-up.  However, this process was very complex and complicated…so much that for every one of these anyone who was available in the shop stopped and came to help gluing the process.  That process involved lot’s of glue, mortises and tenons, and was finished by driving wedged into the through tenons from the interior partitions into the case back!  Oh, and by the way…now I know why Jeff and Steve use Elmer’s White glue for everything.  It dries clear and it have a longer open time for complicated gluing tasks like this one.  The last thing that I glued up was the hunt board top – this was a glue-up with two pieces taken from the same board for a good color match.

day-4-resultsWhile the case was drying I started on the drawer bearers. These are glued to the case sides and interior partitions and keep the drawers from skewing and tipping out as they are inserted and extended.  I also started sizing the drawer fronts.  These are initially sized for the exact size of the openings and will then be mildly embellished and will also have cock beading applied.  I’m hopeful that we will get at least one drawer completed on Friday.  In the picture you can see the result of the last two days work on my bench at the school.

masters-walls-and-furnitureanother-machine-shop-viewThe last two pictures show one of walls with little plaques of every woodworking Master’s recipient from the school.  These are awarded to each student who completes a curiculim of certain class requirements.  From there students can go on to a fellowship with an extended stay at the school and working with a specific instructor.  The last shot is another view of the machine room after the days work had been completed.

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