A new dining room set for my wife! #14: Let's see, where was I. Oh, yea! Let's finish the legs!

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Blog entry by GaryK posted 05-05-2011 03:10 AM 2117 reads 1 time favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 13: More work on the front legs. It's the bees knees! Part 14 of A new dining room set for my wife! series Part 15: Sanding is the pits! Here's something unusual I plan on doing. »

Well, that was a lot of gluing to get all those knee blocks in place.

Now I could just sand them flush with the leg but that makes a lot of sawdust so I figured that I would use a chisel to remove the majority of extra wood. You can see in the picture below that I made a quick bench hook to support the leg while I worked on it. That and a nice sharp chisel.

You can’t really see exactly how I do it since I need one hand to take the picture. I would normally have my left hand pressing the chisel flush to the surface of the leg while I pushed with the right. I also keep the butt of the chisel right at the level of my belt and use my hips to apply pressure. With the pressure from my hip, I am mainly using my right hand to guide the chisel. This makes it real easy to shave off the material.

Then I use the spindle sander to sand under where the knee meets the leg. I put a block under the square part of the leg to supports it. This will give it real smooth transition and remove the saw marks from the rest of the knee block.

Then back to the belt sander to clean up where the knees meet the leg.

At this point things don’t have to be real pretty.

On the knee at 8 degrees I rounded the transition instead of leaving it square.

Then back in the lathe for two reasons. I can run it a slow speed to sand the round part at the bottom of the leg and hold it while I sanded it with the RO sander. Remember that I trimmed the top of the leg to length already? Well I took one of the cut offs and added 4 little angled pieces to it. This will keep it spinning true and not mark the leg with a hole.

I used 100 grit in the sander to fair all the surfaces nice and smooth. Then I will finish sanding the rest by hand and clean up anything else that needs it. Since that will take so long, I will do about 2 legs a day so it will be a while before you hear from me again. I hate sanding!

It looks a lot better now, huh?

Till next time.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

12 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35279 posts in 5692 days

#1 posted 05-05-2011 03:24 AM

Looks great Gary.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4633 days

#2 posted 05-05-2011 03:28 AM

looks real good gary

if you hate sanding
the way i do

i’ll see you in the summer lol

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View sras's profile


6434 posts in 4421 days

#3 posted 05-05-2011 03:41 AM

Good call on the chisel and nice quick jig for the lathe. Thanks for the tips! (now I just need to remember them …)

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 5174 days

#4 posted 05-05-2011 03:58 AM

Go Gary.
I applaud your attack of this. That is a lot of work. Really cool though.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View CanadianWoodChuck's profile


402 posts in 5205 days

#5 posted 05-05-2011 04:05 AM

moving right along – looks great

-- Wood Chuck (Bruce)

View shipwright's profile


8761 posts in 4089 days

#6 posted 05-05-2011 04:35 AM

If I may say so, you have lovely knees :-). Nice work Gary.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3665 posts in 5004 days

#7 posted 05-05-2011 05:52 AM


You certainly have a nice way of “simplifying” difficult work! You make it look so easy, but we all know better!


P.S. Does anyone actually like sanding?

-- Voltaire: “Those Who Can Make You Believe Absurdities, Can Make You Commit Atrocities” There are 112 genders (not including male and female)

View Tony's profile


995 posts in 5322 days

#8 posted 05-05-2011 09:40 AM

The joys of creating perfection – I sympathize on the subject of sanding.

-- Tony - All things are possible, just some things are more difficult than others! - SKYPE: Heron2005 (

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 5113 days

#9 posted 05-05-2011 10:51 AM

I am sure that you will find the overwhelming majority of the group shares your “enjoyment” for sanding. But the good thing is that once you are at the sanding stage the “finish” line is not far ahead.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Broglea's profile


695 posts in 4382 days

#10 posted 05-05-2011 02:57 PM

I hate sanding too. Have fun!

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 4214 days

#11 posted 05-05-2011 11:57 PM

Added tools again.. sanding equipment… making life easy. If someone doesn’t like sanding, what about a spokeshave? Maybe a rasp file will do… But I like the way Gary makes his own way of doing things. thinking of the 8 chairs x 2 front legs. There must be a way of controlling dust during sanding… this is the one that is annoying.

A well shaped legs….
Keep it up.

-- Bert

View Ken90712's profile


18083 posts in 4480 days

#12 posted 05-11-2011 10:49 AM

And he keeps on going and going and going!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

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