Looking the Part

The new traveling tool chest is finally starting to look like one.  The dovetailed lower skirt went on Sunday morning, and I couldn’t be more pleased with the result.

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Another size comparison with Version 1.0.

Unlike my other tool chest iterations, the chamfer on the lower skirt was cut by hand with a block plane.  The result is a steeper angle (about 55 degrees) than I would otherwise get with a trim router.  It was good practice at planing both right and left handed and the clean-up was oh-so-easy.

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A simple operation, really.

When gluing the skirt onto the carcase, there was a sizable gap along the front skirt, more than I was comfortable filling with just paint.  So in addition to a significant clamping setup, I made a goberge to help close the gap from the inside.  Marginal improvement, but not enough for my aesthetic taste.  The front of the chest is now the rear (and wee-keh wehr-sah).

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So much clamping going on here.

Problem is, the more a goberge is required, the more it tends to dent the inside of the carcase.  With some heat from an iron and a wet cloth, though, the impressions should spring out well enough for a tool chest.  On a furniture piece, I would probably add some padding to the corners (adhesive-backed cork, probably) to lessen the marring.

With the lower skirt finished, next up is the lid.  The panel glue-up didn’t turn out as expected, so I’m going in a completely different direction: 3/4″ birch plywood.  That also means I’m skipping the full dust deal. Three oak battens, one in the front and two on the sides (dovetailed together) will be glued and screwed to the underside of the lid, keeping out the dust.  I have some lovely 3/4″ flat-sawn red oak that is mineralized along the rift-sawn edges and will be perfect for this operation.

Perfect enough to keep the natural wood color, I think.

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