NYPD Pipes And Drums Box, Part 2…
So let me start off by saying that you cannot use a Record #043 (or any grooving plane, really) to make a stopped groove. Didn’t take me but a few passes to realize the skate was going to cause issues with that.
(EDIT: This is slightly inaccurate. I should say, “you cannot use JUST a Record #043 to make stopped grooves”. Not sure why I didn’t think to use my little #271 to finish up what I couldn’t get with the plow plane before… Also going to research quirk routers and carriage maker planes a bit to see how they might work.)
Ah, well. Blended shop it is… out came the palm router with the 1/4″ bit. After a few minutes of setup, it was ready to go and the grooves were grooved. Can I get back to my iTouch now?
Then… life happened. Nothing big, just… life. Things to do, baby gets sick, family visits – you know, “life”. My other worldly challenges seem to be severely impacting my ability to get into the shop with any regularity these days. I find maybe an hour or two in a week to get down there. And sometimes I end up just cleaning or doing some organization or… sharpening of tools. And an hour isn’t enough to make headway on most of that, much less also work on the current project on the bench.
Last night I listened to Game #3 of the World Series (again… nice to be in a “hand tool mostly” shop) while I mortised the lock for the box. Ugh. Talk about nervous. The easiest time to mortise such a lock is when the box is not yet assembled. I just get a bit antsy doing work like this when I’m already behind schedule and really don’t want to cut a new board if I mess it up.
But slow and steady wins the race, as they say. (You know… “them”.) It helps that I use higher quality locks from Whitechapel LTD; they are made in England and somewhat costly, but the relative ease of installation is worth it, as is the good feeling I get from knowing I’m using quality products. When it comes to my woodworking, I avoid anything with “Made In China” located on it at all costs… even if it means passing a higher product price on to the customer.
Take your time, use a sharp marking knife, score lightly the first few passes, then remove the bulk of the waste with whatever method suits you. I chose to chop it out with bench chisels. It was mostly paring with just the occasional chopping, so I didn’t miss Pujols’ first home run.
Or the second one.
Or the third one, for that matter. 🙂 (It would probably be easier to motivate myself to find shop time if I got to listen to a game like THAT every time!) Then remove the final bit with a small router, like the Stanley #271.
I started with the recessed bit on the edge of the board. Made a few light chops, then picked up the #271, set the depth (using that part of the lock itself to get the proper depth), clamped two pieces of scrap side pieces to either side of the area I was mortising (to better support the #271) and cleaned out the waste. It was remarkably easy and much safer and quieter than the palm router.
Then I worked on the mortising of the inside face (this is the part that is easier when the box is not assembled). First I worked on the deeper inside mortise so I could still use the other area to further support the #271 when I was cleaning out the bottom of it. Then it was the top two ledges where the screws will mount it to the box. Before it can be pressed into place, you have to drill the hole for the lock pin. I used a pencil to put a bit of graphite on the pin, lined it up as best I could, and pressed it mostly into place. When I removed it, a small indentation with a smudge of pencil lead showed me where to drill.
If you take your time, think it all out, and enjoy the process, you end up with something like this…
… and that’s a good thing.
(Oh, come on… when you do something this nice and neat, it only seems fitting to channel Martha!)