As

Hardboard makes a good, reusable template for the bracket feet profiles, see pattern at left. To position the template on the blank, just line it up with the cove you've already cut.

NOTE: See full size pattern on last page of this article. ©2003 August Home Publishing. All rights reserved.

Hardboard makes a good, reusable template for the bracket feet profiles, see pattern at left. To position the template on the blank, just line it up with the cove you've already cut.

Face Profile: Clean-Up

Up to this point, all the work at the table saw has been to get the face of the blanks to rough shape. Now it's time to clean up all the unwanted shoulder lines and saw marks left by the saw blade so that you end up with a smooth curve on the face profile.

This is where the handwork of making bracket feet comes in, and you'll find there's really not much to it. Each blank only has a little material left to remove, and the profiles drawn on the ends will guide you. But don't be too critical. Ihe bracket feet end up far enough apart so that no one will notice if the profiles aren't exactly identical.

OUTSIDE CURVES. The areas that need the most shaping are the outside (convex) curves at the top and bottom of the feet. I shaped them with a block plane set to take a thin shaving, as shown in Step 7. (But

Miter & Spline Joint

Now that the profile of each blank is complete, they can be cut into individual pieces and one end of each front foot piece can be mitered.

LABEL BLANKS. But before you get started, it's a good idea to label the pieces, as shown in the drawing below. For each front foot, you want to glue the ends you cut apart back together — this time joining them with splined miters.

There are two reasons for doing it this way. For one thing, the grain on the faces of the halves will match up and "wrap around" the foot. Plus,

7 On the blank's outside curves, plane any hard lines, removing enough waste to create a gentle curve that matches the layout on the ends.

you can also get the job done with a rasp or a Surform-type plane, which looks like a block plane but works like a rasp.) Start by smoothing out the noticeable shoulders. Then simply keep taking thin shavings, following the profile drawn on the end.

8 Once the ridges have been planed away, smooth out the curve using a piece of sandpaper wrapped around a short length of plumbing insulation.

INSIDE CURVES. The inside curves are even easier. All you need to do is sand or scrape them (Step 8). I wrapped sandpaper around a length of plumbing insulation. It provides just enough support and flexibility to sand the curve efficiently.

since you have already done the final shaping, this technique will ensure the profile of the pieces match as closely as possible. (You may still need to do some light sanding after they're glued together.)

WITER FRONT PIECES. With the parts labeled and cut apart, the next step is to miter one end of each front foot piece, as shown in Step 9. The nice thing here is you don't have to worry about an exact length. That will be taken care of when you create the scallop profile later. But I still added a stop block to the auxiliary miter gauge fence so the piece wouldn't shift as it was being pushed across the blade.

After mitering the pieces, I lowered the blade and repositioned the stop block to cut a kerf for a spline (Step 10). These splines are added mostly to keep the pieces aligned when you glue them together.

BACK FEET. Because a project like the blanket chest is usually against a bed or wall, only the front feet are mitered. The back feet are simply supported with a small triangular brace in back (refer to Step 17).

Now cut a 3fa"-deep kerf in each mitered end for a spline to help align the pieces. Then cut a W hardboard spline to fit in the kerf.

9 With the profile complete, cut all the blanks in half. (See drawing at left.) Then miter the four pieces that will be used for the front feet.

Now cut a 3fa"-deep kerf in each mitered end for a spline to help align the pieces. Then cut a W hardboard spline to fit in the kerf.

Stop block

Front

NOTE: Leave blanks at least 7Va" long

Stop block

Front

NOTE: Leave blanks at least 7Va" long

Scalloped Profile

Before you can glue the feet together, there's still one more profile to cut If s cut on the end of the blank (instead of on the face), and the work is done at the band saw and drill press (instead of the table saw). But the first thing to do is lay out the profile.

LAY OUT PROFILES. You've already made the template for this curve, refer to the pattern on page 2. But this time, the front and back legs are slightly different The front feet are 7" long overall (Step 11), while the back feet are only 6V2" (Step 12). For both feet, I laid out a line across the back side of each blank and then aligned the template with this line.

With the back feet, the thing to keep in mind is that they're not identical. With their contoured faces, they're mirrored images of each other, so make sure you end up with both a right and a left back foot.

SHAPE PROFILE. These profiles are easier to create than the face profiles. I roughed out the profile at the band saw (Step 13). Then I sanded as much as possible with a drum sander (Step 14) before finishing them with a little hand sanding.

Foot Assembly

Now that the profiles arc complete, the feet are ready to be assembled.

FRONT FEET. To join the halves of the front feet, I wanted to use clamps, but there's no good place to position them. So I glued small clamping blocks to the top and bottom edges parallel with the mitered end. And to

FIRST: Glue plywood clamp blocks parallel with miters—.

Was this article helpful?

0 0

Post a comment