Maple Trestle Table, Session 13 – Making Things Better, Worse, then Better

On the morning of Sunday, April 15th, Morton and I exchanged ideas about trestle tables, spurred on by a recent sketch of a table on which he was working.  That got me yearning to build a trestle table.

I documented my progress live on Twitter which was useful because each update had a time stamp so followers could see the rate at which I progressed.  Here is a list of the previous Sessions:

Session 1 – Flat Boards are Boring;
Session 2 – Playing with Slabs;
Session 3 – From Two Slabs to One Table Top;
Session 4 – Clamping Odd Shapes and Sketching on Wood;
Session 5 – Routing Pockets for Battens;
Session 6 – Making Battens and Installing Countertop Connectors;
Session 7 – Installing Battens and Flattening the Underside;
Session 8 – Make Your Tools Work for You and Flattening the Top;
Session 9 – Mortises the Slow Way (or Why I’m Buying a Domino XL);
Session 10 – Curvy Legs are Always Good;
Session 11 – Straight Lines on Wonky Surfaces; and
Session 12 – Fitting the Mother of all Mortise & Tenon Joints.

(If you are not familiar with the format used on Twitter, every update, or “tweet” below starts with a username, being the author of that tweet.  Sometimes, you see two or more usernames in a tweet.  The second (and third, etc) usernames are preceded by a @ symbol and are people to whom the author is talking.  The other symbol you see is #, which serves as a category.  I try to remember to categorize all my tweets pertaining to this project under #flairww.)

FlairWoodworks I’m back in the shop and I know exactly what to do next. #flairww -10:55 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I routed around the batten to create a flat, coplanar surface. #flairww -11:00 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Now I need to plane until the shoulders disappear. #flairww -11:03 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks A scrap of heavy carpet makes working on your knees more pleasant. #flairww -11:06 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m so used to using my entire body while planing, but when kneeling or sitting, I can only use my upper body – mostly my arms. #flairww -11:09 AM May 7th, 2012

Tumblewood I’ll have let the girls downtown know that! Hehe! RT @FlairWoodworks: A scrap of heavy carpet makes working on your knees more pleasant. #flairww -11:16 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @Tumblewood I thought you might like to know that. You are married, right? -11:20 AM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks The Moxon vise is not particularly good at holding boards that don’t extend down past the screws. #flairww -12:07 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m working on getting the battens to fit tightly against the underside of the table. #flairww -12:07 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks My Japanese saw has more missing teeth than a hockey player. Might be time to replace the blade. #flairww -12:10 PM May 7th, 2012 TomVTWRT @FlairWoodworks: My Japanese saw has more missing teeth than a hockey player. Might be time to replace the blade. #flairww -12:13 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks That’s the fit I like to see! #flairww -12:21 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’ve finally got one batten completely installed. #flairww -12:41 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks The left corner seen here was quite low so I needed to rout a deeper recess. #flairww -12:49 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks It’s most important to get the ends flat to allow a tight fit without too much fuss. #flairww -12:49 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Hmm… that’s a big step! #flairww -12:51 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I lifted the table top onto two rolling shop carts to bring it to a more comfortable height. #flairww -1:05 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Radiused and cambered blades are amazing. #flairww -1:11 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m getting close. My arms are getting tired. #flairww -1:34 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks That was work! #flairww -1:41 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I can’t find my ratchet which I need to reinstall the batten. After it’s installed, I’m going to go for lunch, then tidy up the shop. #flairww -1:59 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Somehow, I made this batten narrower than the recess. It’s still functional but I’m not happy about it. #flairww -2:03 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’ll remake the batten later. #flairww -2:05 PM May 7th, 2012

WatkinsWoodWork @FlairWoodworks You haven’t mixed up one side for the other have you? Weird that it’s fitting different all of a sudden -2:09 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @WatkinsWoodWork No, I trimmed the sides and evidently went too far. #flairww -2:09 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Okay, I’m back in the shop after lunch (which involved a bagel and stripping wallpaper). I’m going to do some major tidying up and cleaning. #flairww -4:24 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I finished tidying up the benchroom. The machine shop… that’s a different story. #flairww -5:49 PM May 7th, 2012

This time-lapse video shows the work involved in cleaning up the shop.  (Duration – 2:37)

FlairWoodworks And now the machine shop is clean. #flairww -6:48 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks While I was cleaning the shop, my family cleaned the garage! Awesome. #flairww -7:00 PM May 7th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m in a cleaning groove! I just cleaned out my dust collector, which was well overdue. Now it sounds DANGEROUS! #flairww -8:34 PM May 7th, 2012

In the next session, I’ll remake the batten and work the other leg’s joinery.  Don’t leave a comment this time – go clean your shop instead.

3 thoughts on “Maple Trestle Table, Session 13 – Making Things Better, Worse, then Better

  1. Hi from South Africa. If only we could all clean our workshops with such spped it would be great. I have only just joined your blog and find it very interesting. The table is looking great.
    Good job. Regards
    Dave Whittington

  2. A leaf blower wouldn’t be a good option for you with those shavings! Looking good, Chris. Good work on flushing the batten recesses. I won’t go clean my shop because work has kept me from going in there and happily making a mess.

    Oh, I don’t think your idea is new. The historic brothels in Jerome, Arizona all have carpeting.

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