Christmas presents 2009

  • Advertise with us
Project by pbeamtn posted 12-24-2009 05:46 AM 2322 views 2 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I thought this would be a lot easier. Borrow a book with American Girl furniture plans from the library, draw the parts in Sketchup, cut things on the CNC, and everything should fit fine. Well, it didn’t quite work out that way, but I did get it done.

First, I thought I would make bunk beds out of MDF and paint them. The end panels could be just one piece. I did do this in Sketchup and use the CNC to cut them out, but the rails were not very strong and I thought the whole thing would break after being “loved” So I moved to walnut, and modified the drawings to do mortise and tenon joints. Through this I learned my home made CNC has some shortcomings.

I finally resolved to use the CNC to cut the curved parts of the head and foot boards, join with biscuits to the legs, and then use the CNC to mill out the appearance of a panel. This worked, but was time consuming to mill the lumber from rough cut walnut. I also learned it is better to make the rails on the tablesaw instead of the CNC. Stained the whole thing dark to be consistent and then used Shellac to seal it. I had to hurry the finish since Christmas is upon me.

The rocking chair was a lot more difficult to draw. The original plan was all mortise and tenon, but I learned my CNC is just not up to that. So, I reduced the number of parts and laid them all out in a big panel. I knew the rockers would be cross grain, but I thought it would be strong enough. It turns out the rockers are not strong enough, and I broke one when removing the clamps. So I cut another rocker (with the grain this time) and sistered it to the inside—it was only .25” think, so it doesn’t look too weird. I very quick sand, stain, and shellac, and I have to call it done.

If I do another chair, and I might since it looks really cool, I will change the design to use lap joints instead of mortise and tenon. I’m still learning how to use the CNC, and it does require a different thought process. Even though I’m pretty certain I could have done the bunk beds faster with conventional methods, I’m pretty sure that with the proper design, I will be able to do the rocking chair much faster and better on the CNC. Perhaps, by next year I will really know what I am doing!

4 comments so far

View Monty Queen's profile

Monty Queen

1594 posts in 4097 days

#1 posted 12-24-2009 07:59 AM

Awsome job, looks real good.

-- Monty Q, Columbia, South Carolina.

View BigFoot Products Canada's profile

BigFoot Products Canada

711 posts in 4238 days

#2 posted 12-24-2009 03:49 PM

That’s really cool. I tried to find that book at the library but it’s not at ours :( I have a Laser cutter/engraver and have cut out a lot of miniature furniture.

View a1Jim's profile


118135 posts in 4422 days

#3 posted 12-24-2009 06:13 PM

View WoodenCreations's profile


44 posts in 4464 days

#4 posted 12-24-2009 07:50 PM

Love the rocking chair. But kind of takes the fun out of woodworking for me… I would rather cut them out by hand. BUT TO EACH HIS OWN… GREAT JOB.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics