Buffet Hutch - Part three- The buffet face frame

This is a continuation of the posts:

Buffet Hutch - Part one - Drawing up the plans
Part two - Same style different finish

Before I start, I should explain why there are two Buffet Hutches.  In woodworking, a lot of time is spent in setting up tools to the precise measurements needed for each particular piece of wood needed.  Table saw blades are set to height and their fences are set for the width of parts needed.  Routers need to have different bits and those have to be set to height.  When in a table, the router often needs a fence to work with it, and it too needs to be precisely set.  There are other tools like this as well, and this all the setting up takes time.  Each piece may need a different setup at the saw or on the router table.  So... I try and make two or three of a project so that the setups can be used for more parts at the same time. This is similar to the advantages of assembly line work, although I am not making hundreds or thousands of things.  So, I made the parts for two Buffet Hutches, one which I painted and the other I stained.

Here's the basic sketch.  The sizes are not exact.  I work to 1/32" so more precise figures will come about after some of the parts are made.  I am not including here all the measurements for the pieces as I think that is more than anyone wants (plus it might make a good book chapter some day)

Once you have the basic sketch you need to break down into parts. I am starting with the base, the buffet part.

What I do is make a cutting list.  This is a list of all the parts needed for a project.  It includes the name of the part, the quantity, the type of wood and the width, length and thickness of the wood.  It also describes what machining needs to be done to the part.

Starting with the buffet, with the drawers and doors not included there are 15 different parts.  To further break it down, there are two sides, a bottom, a shelf, a base molding, two interior web frames (that the drawers sit between), and a face frame (the area that the drawers and doors sit in).

I plane up my parts to correct thickness but not to precise widths and lengths at the start, depending on the piece in question.  All the face frame and door parts that are 2" wide will be made and cut to width at once, but not to their lengths.  I always make more than I need because often you will either make a mistake (that rarely happens to me!) or you find a knot or split or defect in the wood.

Let's start with the face frame, which is 5 parts:

Tenon and mortise drawing:

 The top and middle horizontal pieces need tenons on both of their ends, as do the two lower middle vertical pieces. When figuring out the lengths of these pieces you need to remember to add the length of the tenons on each end.  I make the tenons on the table saw using a dado blade but first I make the mortises that they will go into using the router and the appropriate bit.  For these mortises I used a 3/8" router bit. The tenon then can be made precisely to size to fit the mortise hole. It is not difficult to shave a bit off the tenon if it is too thick, it's much harder to make the mortise wider. (The bottom center tenon will fit into the bottom of the buffet, so that mortise will be make later). I also get an oval hole with the router bit so I just shave off the corners of the tenon with a sharp chisel.

In college we made our face frames to fit over the sides of the carcase (base piece).  A dado is run down the back of the face frame vertical pieces in a way that they fit precisely over the width of the sides.  This makes an easier way to glue and fit your pieces but it is extra work and your measurements must be exact or else the piece won't fit on.  Also, you must take this into account when figuring out your measurements, because the side pieces of the carcase will extend into the face frame. Being good at, and enjoy mathematics certainly helps the whole process.  I love math!

Here's the face frame from the back:

I really don't think I took many photos of the build, I'll have to go and search my files for some before the next post.

*New pics added to show tenons and mortises*


Stick with me please...

Continue on to:  Part four - The buffet sides and web frames

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