The case bottom will be attached to the side assemblies using stopped, sliding dovetails. One of the horizontal dividers will be a full shelf and similarly attached. The bottom shelf will be fronted by an apron attached to the legs with mortise and tenon and glued to the shelf. Which means that no mahogany is necessary on that work piece. The horizontal divider has a three inch strip of mahogany for the show edge but no back mahogany edge as that will be behind the case back (design of which is still being pondered).
The router jig shown is from Marc Adam’s timely FWW #282 article. A dado is routed with a 3/8 inch straight bit just shy of full depth (1/2 inch) in two passes. After the four dadoes are cut, the jig is reversed, aligned and the sliding dovetails cut in one pass with a 14 degree dovetail router bit to 1/2 inch deep.
Next the two panels of poplar are glued up and milled to approximately 3/4 thick with edges of mahogany where appropriate. These panels will have sliding dovetails cut to fit the case side dovetail slots.
The case top is attached to the side assemblies with half blind dovetails. I began by marking and cutting the tail board (case top). Generally, I would have made the tails much wider than the pins, but as I am working without much in the way of plans, my brain got twisted around just a bit. Structurally they should be just fine, but they do look somewhat odd and it is more difficult to keep track of the tails and pins.
In the past, I’ve used a router or drill press to hog out waste on the half blind tail boards (sides) to establish a nice reference surface. I did get out the router and began to set it up, but was not comfortable that I could see my boundaries well. I realized I’d be much more comfortable using the saw, chisels and mallet. Fun stuff.
Next up will be a stopped sliding dovetail to attach the case bottom to the sides. I will use the nasty router for that operation.
Received three boards of Belize river-salvaged, old-growth Mahogany from Greener Lumber, LLC. Love the authentic swamp smell. The 1-3/8 x 9 inch board will be for the Top and the two 1-1/8 x 9 inch boards will yield Drawer Fronts. All boards are from log 282. Big thank you to Rich Petty for helping me select these.
I won’t be using this material for a while. Having the actual boards will allow me to plan exact drawer heights and thus the location of horizontal divider (full shelf) and web frames with confidence.
Side panels are attached to legs to form the dresser sides. Interior surfaces are flush to accommodate drawer web frames. There is an approximate 1/8 inch reveal on outer surfaces [from legs to side panels]. Lots of long grain surface, so three floating tenons are mostly to aid alignment during glue up.
Today I did a dry fit and began to plan and mark up joinery for case top and bottom to the side assemblies. I’ll be using half blind dovetails for top and stopped sliding dovetail at the base to create the base.
I’ve begun to build a dresser of Mahogany and Poplar. The sad aspect is that it shall live in a small, dark closet unseen by its adoring public or even very often by my own eyes. I haven’t built a case piece in a while so I will be savoring this process. Which is one way of saying, “I’ll be moving slowly.”
I sourced some nice Mahogany from Shannon Roger’s Hardwood To Go; three 5/4 by 8 inch wide boards along with two 12/4 [3 x 3] Leg Blanks.
I also ordered old-growth, Belize river-salvaged Mahogany from Greener Lumber LLC to be used for drawer fronts and the top. Those three boards are all from log 282. I have used material from Rich (owner/operator) on a number of fun projects.
Poplar for interior components was sourced from Tom at Soboba Hardwoods [15 Anacapa Street, Santa Barbara], my favorite local dealer.