Bed build #1: Catching up

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Blog entry by Scout989 posted 07-16-2017 01:16 PM 808 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Bed build series no next part

Okay, this is the first project I’m blogging, so please bear with me and drop me a line if you have suggestions for improvements. This is my second major build, and the first I plan to record at all.

I am now building a California king bedframe for a couple friends of mine. I have no real idea what the style is called, but I’ve been mentally designating it “farmhouse style.” This bed is being built with poplar, as it was cheap enough that I could afford to replace anything I messed up enough to have to start over while being a good intro to hardwoods. The general plan is that the headboard and footboard will consist of two side rails, a top and bottom rail, and a panel of edge glued boards framed by the rails. To keep it looking good but still allow for wood movement, I am gluing the panel to the top rails, but cutting splines on the sides and bottom of the panels and corresponding grooves in the members.

Here’s the pile of wood I started with:

I do not have a jointer, so I took that pile of ~400 bf over to a friend’s house, along with a case of beer. I went home with one flat reference face on each board and no beer. Good trade from my point of view. I then ran all that through the DeWalt planer I have on long term loan from another friend. The frame boards were planed to 1.5”, the panel pieces to 1”. Once the boards were all planed to size, I used my track saw (bought before I knew better, sold as a replacement for a jointer. Oh well) to finish dimensioning the boards. Last step before gluing up the panels was to run the 1” boards across a chamfer bit on the router table to create v grooves in the finished panel.

Picture of the glued up panel for the headboard:

I did the next part completely bassackwards. I used a self centering dowel jig to center the panel on the top rail. Then I cut the splines on the panel. Then matched the tenons on the top rail to the splines. Then I matched the mortises to the tenons. All of this took forever, because that was dumb. Definitely planning to go the other way round for the footboard.

Final picture, this is the dry fit on the top rail and panel into the side rails:

Next step is mortises and tenons for the bottom rail and the groove for the splines. Wish me luck!

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