Now we are coming to the end of the year and the much anticipated final hand-in, the final product build must commence. I started by first of all buying the materials I will be requiring. I visit to Brodie’s at the Inver sawmill was needed and I purchased a large amount of American White Oak. I bought the oak quite early so I could allow it time to settle in the workshop for two weeks.
After the two week wait for the wood to settle I began by planeing the wood to the correct thickness (40mm) this also allowed for a smooth surface finish to take effect. Next with help from the university technicians I cut all the component parts to size and could begin to apply the finer details of the work.
My intention for the angled top face of the table was to first cut the solid piece of two inch oak in half, plane the angle out and then biscuit join the two pieces back together again. In the images below this process can be seen. I applied detailed finishing techniques to hide the split line and can safely say that the end result allowed for an almost unnoticeable divide in the wood.
Next step was to remove the materiel in place for the drainage sink, present in the far end of the table. From discussing this feature with the technicians we devised a way to achieve a crisp finish using many different techniques. The first part of this process was to drill out the end points of the slots using the pillar drill. As the wood was two inches think at some points it was imperative that the holes were at an absolute angle to the part.
Next I used a jigsaw to remove some of the material within the sink slots. The ultimate goal was to use the router to remove the end material from the sink to create a clean cut finish. As the material was very think it is good practice to try and remove as much as possible without cutting past the finish line. This means that the router only has to remove a small amount and therefor reduce the chance of tearing the wood.
After I had removed some material using the jigsaw, leaving a 1 mm gap for the router to remover, we moved on to using the router. We decided that it would be valuable to remove the material from the center channel first. To do this I build a small jig that lifted the table top up at one end, this allowed for the router to remove an angled channel. The angular channel is needed so the water will flow into the drainage sink rather than stay at rest. Once the central channel had been complete we moved on to completing the drainage sink slots. As the slots need to be cut to a uniform shape and size, I created a jig that would stop the cutter when it had cut far enough (the jig can be seen below).
After the linier routing had been complete I moved on to cutting out the flat surfaces for the clay ware to sit on. To achieve this feature I needed to develop and create yet another form of jig. This one however involved cutting a hole out of a piece of MDF in relation to the size of the flat surface I would like to achieve (jig can be seen below). I then clamped the jig in the location I wished the feature to be on the table top. Using a hand router with a bull nose bearing router tip, (the tip has a small bearing on its base which allows it to roll along a surface, in this case the circular jig I created). The hand router in then moved around the jig to create the desired feature. Once the router has done its job the part needed a small amount of finishing, so using chisel I scraped it to a smooth finish.
After the hand routeing was complete I finished the table top by planeing two angles on the bottom face. These angles added an attractive feature to the piece.
Now that the table top was almost complete I moved on to making the base. The base is made op of the utensil shelves the table top supports and the drainage drawer. The base is designed to hold the tea utensils, water sink as well as support the heavy two inch table top; this meant that the part needed to be quite solid as well as stable. Each individual piece of the base was designed to be slotted into each other to maintain a rigid and supportive structure. This was achieved on both the routing and milling machine. Once the component parts were completed they were slotted together and glues in place.
The next task with to attach the table top and the base together. It was decided that the best way to do this was to dowel them together. As doweling two pieces together is a process that calls for absolute accuracy I decided to build a jig. This jig would have the 8 holes needed for doweling already drilled out and would then act as a template for the table top and base. The jig would be paced on top of the base; the holes would then be drilled out using the template jig as a guide the same would then be done for the table top. This resulted in a perfect fit and there was luckily no complication in the joining process.
After the parts had been joined together the build was complete, the finished piece can be seen below. I must now prepare the part for its finishing coat and It will them be ready to present at my Viva.