Saturday, 23 March 2013

The Finished Stool

Here is the finished stool:

Here is what I learned while making this:

  1. Bowed lumber, even if only slightly bowed, is a nightmare to work with. Unfortunately my jointer can only accommodate lumber up to 5.5" wide, so no use for this project
  2. My chisels are not sharp enough
  3. Portable belt sanders are angry tools. I need to bulk up so I can actually control the thing 
  4. Polyurethane should be applied sparingly and sanded between applications. My first two coats were far too thick and the finish was rough and drippy. The third coat was just thick enough to cover the earlier blemishes but light enough to leave a drip free and very smooth surface.
This stool is rock solid, and I take solace from this because I did all the joinery with hand tools!


Gavin said...

Looks good :)

Have you got yourself a chisel sharpener yet? These days you can get a diamond one rather than using a whetstone, but really you need an angled clamp (I forget what they're called) to get the angle right. If you properly go into it then you can use a steeper angle for roughing out and then a shallower angle (on another chisel) to finish the work. Blunt chisels are about the most dangerous wood tool, far more dangerous than a sharp chisel!

Did you use any knotting solution before you varnished it? (It might not have had knots?) - it stops the sap seeping through the varnish/paint over time.

Yes belt sanders are very aggressive, good for rough finishing and levelling out (sunch as your cupped boards) - but if you clamp one in a woodworking vice upside down, they make good bench sanders too, which give you a lot more control over the piece you're sanding. You may find a 1/3rd sheet orbital is much better for fine work, but the sheets will get clogged more quickly, plus you'll make your hands go sleepy if you use it too much! ;)

Chris said...

Hey, Yeah, I bought a chisel sharpening kit which included an oil stone and the angle jig. To be honest the oil stone is a bit crappy because it is far from being flat and I don't really have the tools or the bother to flatten it. I've had more success using a progression of fine grit sand papers, up to 5000 grit. The chisels I've bought are inexpensive Stanley chisels so the steel is soft and it wears quickly. The advantage is that it sharpens very quickly too!

I didn't use any knot sealant. I shall consider this an experiment to see if it is necessary! I suspect that the polyurathane will act as a pretty good sealant anyway.

Are you making anything at the moment?

Gavin said...

Yeah the oil stone needs to be flat and well oiled, it can take years to get them right. I've not used sandpaper, I might have to give that a go!

Yeah you'll probably be OK with varnish but if you decide to use normal paint then you need knotting solution - it comes in a small bottle and you just brush it on the knot. If the timber is well seasoned then there shouldn't be much seepage anyway, but it's a pain to see it through the surface.

I've been toying with the idea of making my own amplifier (with BJTs) based on some service manuals of amps I would like, but in terms of woodworking the only thing I have done is working on Dad's house, so hung/trimmed a few doors, put latches in and fitted a kitchen, but the kitchen fitting isn't as delicate as the cabinet making you are doing!