Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Table Project - Post 0

As some of you may know, I have a short attention span for projects. I'll get an idea in my head, and if I don't complete it soon, it falls to the wayside and never sees the light of day again. I understand this is an issue for a number of people. Occasionally, though, an idea will come to me and I can't shake it. A great example of this is my honeybees. I was interested in keeping honeybees, so I started looking into it. My wife, wisely, would not let me get anything for beekeeping unless I still wanted them after some [lengthy] period of time. During that time, I did more research on bees, as much as I could without actually having any. So, the spring after we bought our house, I acquired the equipment for two hives and the bees to go in them.

Actually having the bees is great, and it has spawned interest in other areas that I hadn't much considered before, such as woodworking. I researched building my own bee boxes, found a table saw on craigslist, bought some lumber from The Home Depot and made my first pair of hive bodies (currently the top box on each of my hives). I have since acquired a router, router table, and drill press—which allow me to make boxes better and faster. However, it also put other ideas in my head. Ideas of doing more with woodworking than beekeeping equipment.

One of those ideas I have not been able to shake, I keep coming back to it, and I have the feeling it's like the bees. It's something that I will have to see through to the end and see what other things it leads me to doing. Like the bees, it's something that will require a good deal of research and new skills on my part, but many more skills than the bees required.

I want to make a solid wood kitchen table.

Or, more specifically, a pair of solid wood kitchen trestle tables of the same dimensions so that we can have a larger table area when need be, and break down to create more open area as need be.

Since this idea popped into my head late last spring, I have spent many hours on the internet looking at trestle tables, general woodworking, furniture making, and other related information. I still want to make the tables. Today I figured I might as well document the entire process from this point (very near the beginning) going forward.

Things I know I want:
  • Two identically dimensioned solid wood tables
  • The tables to be easily broken down and set up
Things I'm greatly considering, but unsure about:
  • Trestle tables
  • Oak, Mahogany, some other hardwood?
  • Carving the supports in a celtic or norse style, perhaps with the locking pins functioning as the eyes
  • 2 or 3 adults to the long sides
  • Tusk Tenons
  • Danish Oil Finish
Ideas I'm tossing around:
  • Iron banding across the width of the tables
  • Built-in handles to make relocation easier
  • Chains for keeping track of the pins
Things I need to decide:
  • Table thickness
  • Trestle style
Things I need to learn:
  • Joinery
    • Table top: Unknown
    • Breadboards: Unknown
    • Legs/Supports: Unknown
    • Stretcher: Tusk Tenons
    • Support-Table locking pins: dowel pins? tapered?
  • Carving - the decorative elements, such as the supports mentioned above, this will take lots of practice
  • Equipment usage
  • Finishing
  • Support math (will the legs hold the table)
Equipment I currently know that I need:
  • Pipe clamps
  • Planer
  • Joiner
  • Band-saw
  • Saw for cross-cuts (my tablesaw won't do it)
  • A way to sharpen my chisels
  • Probably additional chisels
Plan of Action:
  • Learn the bits I can as I can (for instance, grabbing a chunk of 2x4 and start carving again)
  • Sketch out the basic table design (without decorative elements)
  • Adjust design to lock in dimensions
  • Render detailed plans (with and without decorative elements)
  • Acquire tools
  • Create prototype from pine using plans
  • Source lumber
  • Build tables

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