I started the joinery with the legs. They are 3″ x 3″ Douglas Fir and the first operation was to cut them to their final length on the table saw as can be seen in the pic above. The height of the blade was set to just over the center of the legs and cuts on opposite sides completed the cut.
Next holes were drilled in the bottom of the legs to accommodate T-nuts and threaded rubber feet to allow for leveling the bench for use. This is a feature that I frequently use because I have never seen a level, flat floor and I hate when things roll off my work surface. The legs were too long to get into my drillpress so I drilled them by hand. Sighting down 2 squares using a hand drill or a brace will give you a very straight hole. I posted an article on this method 2013-11-10.
Then it was time to cut the mortises. There were sixteen 1/2″ x 3″ mortises to be cut so I brought out my benchtop mortiser and it made quick work of the task. I always cut mortises first and fit the tenons to them.
The bottoms of the machine cut mortises were cleaned up with mallet and chisels. This procedure goes quickly.
The final operation on the legs was drilling 3/8″ holes and 7/8″ counterbores to accommodate the 3/8″ hex head lag screws and washers that will be used to attach the ends of the base to the long aprons and stretchers. The machining of the legs is now complete.
A decision was made to put a shelf across the back of the bench to hold files and supplies. The top pic above shows the shelf side supports. A dado was cut to allow the supports to be screwed to the side of the top while the edge carries the weight of the shelf. The bottom pic above shows the shelf dado being cut using a stacked dado head on the table saw. A thin plywood back for the shelf will prevent items from falling off the back.
Orders for knobs and totes suddenly came rushing in and the saw sharpening bench project has to be put on hold for several weeks while I play catch up!
The aprons and stretchers have been cut to length. All that remains before assembly is cutting the tenons and fitting them to their respective mortises, and drilling the holes in the long aprons and stretchers for the lag screws. Unfortunately it will be several weeks before I can get back to this project.
As always thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a comment.