Sunday, October 21, 2012

Dovetail Joints and Nesting Tables

I'm working hard on things for the Holiday Bazaar in November, but I don't have much in the way of finished products to show off right now. In the meantime, here is another studio update:

I recently learned how to make a dovetail joint on the router! My first attempt was rather rushed because I didn't have a lot of time in class and it ended up very loose and wobbly.

What not to do

My second attempt was much better. I went back to the shop over the weekend and took my time, making sure everything on the router table was adjusted properly and clamped down so it wouldn't move. Then I was careful to take off only the tiniest bit of material off at a time, because if you are impatient and cut off too much, you can't put it back! I wish I had remembered to put a block behind the piece while I was cutting, because a little bit of tear-out occurred, which makes it still look kind of rough, although the joint itself fits very well! 

Much Better!
I plan to use a dovetail joint in my table design, so hopefully my next one will be even better. This is the first sketch  model of my table design, which I am currently working on refining for my midterm presentation on Wednesday.

I am making a set of three small nesting tables. I think nesting tables are really cool because they only take up as much space as one table when they are nested, but can have the surface area of multiple tables when you need them. Perhaps part of this stems from my childhood fascination with nesting dolls. It is so much fun to open up the dolls and discover smaller and smaller versions of them!

Although I often really like to see lots of ornament on furniture, I think that nesting tables can sometimes get too busy looking because they have so many more legs than just a single table. For this reason, I am trying to keep the form as simple as possible and avoid extra ornamentation, instead using the repetition of the table units themselves and the way the joints fit together as the ornament.

Front View
All of the legs line up together in the front, giving it a flat, uniform appearance.

Side View
From the side, the legs hide behind one another, looking narrower and creating a larger void. The tabletops and stretchers create a stepping effect, which I like quite a bit. I have already changed my design somewhat since taking these pictures, including making the table smaller (this model would be 3' tall with a 2' x 2' footprint, I decided to make it 2'x1'x1' instead), making the members slightly narrower, and bringing the stretchers off the floor. I will have more on that design process in the next update, but for now I need to get ready for the midterm!

-Baby Cat

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