At Least Find Me Handy

One of the things about this hobby that brings me joy is the ability to solve small problems, like a missing bottom for this drawer.


I especially like it when I can use scrap wood found around the place, and don’t have to make a trip to the store.

Better still is when I can manage to make a piece like this work, with that big crack making it not so useful for much.

Heck, I even enjoy it when near the end of my work I realize that next time I do this I only need to plane down angles on three sides instead of four; guess I was just having too much fun planing to bother with counting how many grooves were in need of tongues.

It was enjoyable knowing I had several options, and knew how to do each. I could get out my No. 45 and plane tongues on the board; or I could use my shoulder plane and cut square rabbets along the edges. Or I could do what I decided to do, the simplest method – and I wonder if this isn’t the oldest method? – just planing at an angle with my No. 5 until the ends were narrow enough to fit the grooves.

Knowing how to size the piece up; knowing to orient the piece so when the wood expands and contracts it will travel in the grooves and not push against the sides; it’s all good stuff, and simple as it is, it just gives you that warm feeling of satisfaction.

Oh, and it was done at my new small workbench (and yes, it was all done sitting down).

This entry was posted in Deep Thoughts, Joinery, Projects, Skills & Techniques. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to At Least Find Me Handy

  1. wb8nbs says:

    I have a small antique table here. Your method of thinning the bottom to fit grooves is exactly the same. My table drawer bottom looks rough though. They probably hacked it down with a draw knife rather than a plane.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wesley Beal says:

      My guess is that the worker saw no point in worrying if the bottom looked rough. That side wasn’t ever seen anyway.

      On something new purchased today we’d think of that as cheap. Yet when I see that sort of thing on old furniture and construction, I think it looks more authentic. Even more so with regards to what I think I hear you describing: the board wasn’t cleaned up on the bottom-side at all; might of even been made from green wood.


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