Cherry table with a drawer

  • Advertise with us
Project by Jeremymcon posted 02-20-2017 10:41 PM 1738 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a cherry side table I’ve been working on to replace an ugly table made from veneered particle board that I’ve had since college.

I mostly worked by hand – mortise and tenons all chopped/cut by hand, edge jointing done with a jointer plane. I did use my bandsaw pretty heavily for ripping, resawing, and tapering the legs. Got a lunchbox planer recently too, so that’s been great compared to milling boards by hand like I had been doing! I still touch every surface with a smoothing plane to remove the planer marks.

I did a few things with the table that were new techniques to me, so I had a lot of fun and learned a bunch.

First: cherry is brittle stuff! I split one leg while cutting a dovetail for rail above the drawer (it is attached to the legs with a lapped dovetail).

I also got to use the dowel plate I received from rom my wife as a Christmas gift this year. The trick, I found, was to split pegs from straight grained pieces, then whittle them pretty close to the final dimensions. I could go between the holes that are only 1/16” difference (i.e. 3/8 to 5/16) without additional whittling, but 1/8” (i.e. from the 1/2” hole to the 3/8”) was too much to take off without whittling first.

I only pegged these tenons – I considered drawboring slightly, but again, this cherry (all cherry?) is super brittle, and I only did 1/4” tenons for everything but the tail below the drawer (did 3/8” there).

This was my first experience with drawers as well. I cut the half blind dovetails by hand, and just like my through dovetails, they hold together fine, but there are some pretty big gaps! I decided not to fill them at all. The table is just for my wife and I to use, and I like to think that some day I’ll get better at cutting dovetails, and that I’ll enjoy having something to compare my future work to. Lol.

The only flaw that really still bothers me is that somehow the frame isn’t quite square! Actually had to make the drawer just slightly out of square in order for it to fit! But you can’t really tell by looking at it, except if you look closely at the drawer when it’s open.

The drawer bottom is solid cherry resawn from 4/4 on my bandsaw, and is attached in a pretty clever way, I think. The plans I used recommended it, actually. The bottom can be removed, and is just held in place with a screw in a slot in the back. I added a stop so that my wife doesn’t have to worry about accidentally dropping the drawer on the ground too.

On top of all that new stuff, I also turned the knob myself on a mini lathe received as another Christmas gift!

Finished with shellac, followed by a beeswax polish that I made based on a recipe from the “Darbin orvar” channel on YouTube.

12 comments so far

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4122 days

#1 posted 02-20-2017 11:37 PM

Well it’s a beautiful table, and you got some valuable experience—can’t beat that combination!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

2649 posts in 1622 days

#2 posted 02-20-2017 11:55 PM

Good Job, Jeremy! George Hepplewhite is smiling down upon you for sure.

View observer100's profile


476 posts in 2085 days

#3 posted 02-21-2017 04:26 AM

Looks good from here Jeremy! Nice to get a project done and admire it every day.

-- Seeing is believing.

View cdnstudentwoodworker's profile


55 posts in 2535 days

#4 posted 02-21-2017 05:51 AM

Beautiful work

View Valete's profile


100 posts in 2434 days

#5 posted 02-21-2017 12:23 PM

Gorgeous. Nice details!

View Stephen Fox's profile

Stephen Fox

110 posts in 4369 days

#6 posted 02-21-2017 01:50 PM

Nice syroco letter holder as well.

-- Stephen NYS

View Jeremymcon's profile


419 posts in 1655 days

#7 posted 02-21-2017 01:54 PM

Actually… The letter holder is molded plastic from a thrift store. Lol. But it serves its purpose.

Edit: just Googled “syroco letter holder”. Didn’t know the thing was so old! I assumed it was just some cheap thing someone else picked up at a Walmart sometime in the past, then ditched at a goodwill.

View Halc's profile


146 posts in 2577 days

#8 posted 02-21-2017 01:57 PM

Very nice table! I’ve had cherry dowels shatter on me too, maybe it’s best to stick with oak dowels for draw boring.

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

2649 posts in 1622 days

#9 posted 02-21-2017 01:58 PM

Very nice table! I ve had cherry dowels shatter on me too, maybe it s best to stick with oak dowels for draw boring.

- Halc

I use bamboo for drawbore pins …

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3841 days

#10 posted 02-21-2017 02:45 PM

Jeremy, you have done an outstanding job on this table. It turned out so beautifully.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View david38's profile


3518 posts in 3318 days

#11 posted 02-21-2017 04:58 PM

nice work

View oldrivers's profile


2430 posts in 2541 days

#12 posted 02-21-2017 08:04 PM

Congratulations on a great build and the well deserved Daily Top 3 award.

-- Soli Deo gloria!

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