I just never blogged much about the build because it was going to be a gift for Laura's birthday. I have shown the bookcases to her already, so it is safe to blog about them.
The shells for both sets were completed a couple of weeks ago, just prior to the DCBE.
I had prepared stock for the drawers and the shelves for one of the units, and with the new beautiful dovetail saw that Pedder gave me, my fingers practically itched to start dovetailing.
My plan was to line the drawers with green felt, this meant that I could safely cross the baseline on the half blind dovetails. Something that I normally never do. I didn't even do it for those on the carcase itself.
The dovetailing went easy, and I had made a template for marking out the place to make a recession for the flush mounted handles. This recession was made using a Forstner drill.
Basically I just followed the excellent instructions for mounting hardware that can be found in the book Campaign Furniture by Christopher Schwarz.
Before finishing I also made ready for installing the brass corners. I did all of the chiseling and routing, so it would just be a matter of putting the corner guards in place and then drill a couple of pilot holes before mounting the screws.
I applied two coats of "Superior" shellac, using an old piece of a T-shirt instead of a brush. I find that I can get a more even coat that way. After each coat I very lightly sanded the surface using some grit 320 sandpaper, just to remove any nibs from the surface.
After the shellac, I applied a coat of my home made paste wax from beeswax, orange oil and a bit of turpentine.
After the wax, I installed the flush drawer pulls and corner guards.
The two shells were brought inside, and I used some thinned hot hide glue to attach the felt.
Attaching the felt took a bit longer than I expected, but I wanted it to look good, so I took my time. I first glued on the piece covering the back and the top, then each side got their piece attached.
When the glue had dried, I trimmed the excess using a blade from a hobby knife which I had honed a bit extra. Felt is hard to cut if the blade isn't really sharp. The dados for the shelves were the last thing that I trimmed.
The final thing was to install the hinges and admire the first completed bookcase.
I have timed the build, but since the timing is for two bookcases, I haven't added it all up yet. So I'll wait with that till I complete the second unit. Hopefully that will be done before Christmas.
Traveling bookcase in elm, green felt lining.
Closed traveling bookcase next to Roorkee chair.
Opened traveling bookcase.
Using flash to show the green felt.
Felt lined drawers.
Half blind dovetails.
Brass corner guard.
Brass corner guard and half blind dovetails.