APD: Attention Project Disorder

I’m still working on the dovetails but a few more projects have started to sneak onto my bench.  From a certain standpoint one would think I’m taking on too much at a time.  But I would counter that I’m thinking smartly and in a manufacturing mindset of doing similar jobs at once.  Sure, that’s it.

Let’s get this out of the way first, dovetails.  I’m still beating this dead horse and moving along okay.  Although I cut some pine the other night and the results were unfortunate.  I started sawing on the wrong side of the tails line, the pins were too tight, and then nothing fit.  Trying to be optimistic, I saw this as a chance to really chisel my way out of this situation.  Well, after spending 20 minutes and getting one tail to fit I stopped.  I was reminded that this was practice and I could cut another whole set of joints in the time I am wasting on fixing this one.  There might be a lesson buried somewhere in there.  Probably not.

The second set in poplar were better.


I’m hitting most of my lines and the joint is very snug; maybe a touch more than need be.

Note the divider marks. They show a real craftsman cut these.

Overall I like working with poplar and prefer it over the garbage southern yellow pine that surrounds this area.  I guess this is a good thing as I’m going to make my Dutch tool chest out of poplar.  In fact, I think my dovetails are coming along well enough that I’m going to try and get some of lumber for the case this weekend.  Fingers crossed that turns out well.

I was looking through a book on American furniture (read: Shaker and Arts and Crafts) and saw a couple of projects that should be quick and easy.  One of which I’m not going to reveal what it is because the person I’m making it for will read this.  However, I did find this nice piece of walnut from my “wood pile.”


I’ve almost flattened one side and then I’m going to re-saw it.  And that’s where some thinking will be involved.  I have a band saw but the piece is too wide to use it.  The table saw could work but I really want to maintain as much of the thickness as possible.  I do not have a panel saw to tackle this by hand (or the willingness) but I might have an idea or two.  More on this as it develops.

Next, I was reading Wesley’s blog the other day about his Shaker bench build (here).  I thought about building one of these last year and never did.  His turned out really nice and reminded me of a few narrow cherry boards that need to be used.

I pulled them out last night and they are in fact very narrow (about 4″ or so) and one of them is worse than I remembered.  The bench is 9.5″ wide so I need all three pieces.


I started with my fore plane last night on the questionable piece to see what it looks like.  There is a nice split on the side so this board may be out of the equation.  The other two boards (in the background above) will need a decent amount of work to clean them up.  Once that is done I’ll adjust my lumber needs accordingly.

I did flatten one side on all four pieces of the art supply box.  Dovetails are still the joinery du jour on this and the box will probably get painted.  That will hide the imperfections and be a good test subject for the milk paint going on the DTC.


The amp boxes are still in the mix as well, but I did mark dimensions on two boards for the last cabinet.  Those boards are over by the table saw waiting to be cut down.


Listing everything out makes it look like a lot of work.  I think I work better when there’s a crowded plate.  I figure if I get all the surfacing done then I can convert the bench for joinery.  This has to be the most efficient way to work.

Time to get to it.

Until next time, have a good one.

Eat a peach,


7 thoughts on “APD: Attention Project Disorder

  1. Poplar’s what I’ve worked most with. It’s affordable, and very nice to work. Not so easy to make look nice – always a little fuzzy – but it paints well.

    I’ll be interested in seeing how the re-sawing goes. I haven’t done that before, but I’ve always wanted to have some thinner stock to work with. No band saw though.


    1. I’ll be interested to see how the re-sawing goes, too. Also, the band saw may be my favorite power tool. I have a cheap 14″ one I got off CL & it works okay for what I need. But in general they are super versatile, aren’t too expensive, & have a small footprint. Mine is on a mobile base & I think it is just over 2′ x 2′. A great tool to have around.


      1. It’s the top of my list in power tools I wish I had. The experts never seem to list it as the first power tool to get, but to my mind it does so much. I could easily and quickly break boards down to rough dimensions for hand work.


      2. Given all your hand tools I would get a band saw first. Grizzly makes a great saw & I would keep an eye on Craig’s List. Bound to be some good deals on there, but it’s a waiting game.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I think you just have to get started. For me, going back & watching Megan’s video was what got everything to click. And after all the videos I watched & articles read, actually doing helped even more. Just do it: it’s fun.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s