Chisels a lot

Shop time has become scarce lately and progress on the bench that  I am building has been slow.  I have done a little work and the base is ready for final assembly.  I have drawbored one stretcher to a leg to make sure that method would work well and it did.  I just need to fine tune the mortises and tenons before glueing and pegging the joints.  I am beginning to rethink the idea of building this thing by hand because it is taking so long.  The mortises are taking the longest because I don’t have  a 5/8 mortising chisel.  

Cutting tenons the old fashioned way.

Cutting tenons the old fashioned way.

I have also been trying to create a blog that documents my progress on the lumberjocks website.  The guys over there have been really supportive and have answered questions.  I started documenting my progress on that site without searching to see if anyone had built the same bench.  I did finally search the site and found several members who have built the same bench.  I must admit that I am a little intimidated because the have done some outstanding work and here I am as a newbie trying to build this thing with hand tools only.  What was I thinking?  Oh well, I am having fun and learning a lot.  



I believe that I will be able to start assembling the top next week.  I don’t think that will be too difficult.  I think the hard part will be attaching the leg assembly to the top.  Of course, there are the four large mortises that I will have chop.  I have another big decision that I need to make and that is the  front vise.  I could use the traditional two large wooden screws, but I don’t have the equipment or skills to make my own and to buy two wooden screws like I need will cost around $250.  The other option I have is the Veritas Twin screw.  This is a nice piece of equipment that cost around $250 also.  Each setup has it’s pros and cons and I am still trying to  locate information to learn how to cut my wooden screws because I do like the look of the wooden screws.  Only time will tell.




 At the end of this project, I will write an afterthoughts post and show pictures of all the mistakes that I have made along the way.  I will also included my tips and pointers for fellow newbies who want to tackle this project.  I will publish that post here and on my blog at lumberjocks.  You can check it by clicking on any of the pictures in this post and checking out the blog tab at the top.  Have a good one!


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