Friday, November 27, 2009

Legs 6

I got the rest of the main bodies on the legs glued up today and sanded the curves on the top. Next up, I went to work on the curved ankle details. You will remember the big 1.5" thick blank that I made a few posts ago for this purpose. I've got 4 pieces to cut for the two center legs and 4 pieces for the 4 outer legs. Check the plans. The dimensions are slightly different.

First, after marking the curves on the ends, I used the bandsaw to rough in the curve cut all the way down the blank. This will save me a lot of sanding later.

These cuts take some tricky set up and dangerous maneuvering on the bandsaw:

Then some sanding on the belt sander got me to here:

I'm applying soft, even pressure along the full length of the piece and rolling it constantly back and forth on the belt until I get close to the profile of the curve I'm after.

I moved over to the table saw and cut four of these to 4" and four of them to 4.1" as per the plans, giving me 8 semi circle plugs. Next a diagonal slice needs to be trimmed off of them at 35%. I set the table on my bandsaw to 35%, adjust the fence and play around with the fit a bit, then I can run these through and slice it off:

Once that's set up, it's easy to do all 8:

The pieces that go on the outer ankles have a little recessed rectangular pocket in them. I have a trick for making those. The pocket is .25" tall, and .06" deep. I set up the router table with a .25" groove bit and the router fence 1.3" inches away (per plans):

Then I run all four of the outer pieces across the router to make a groove in them:

Then I cut a little strip of MDF to fit tightly into this slot, but a bit thicker. Next I cut some strips, and glue them back into the sides of the groove leaving the rectangular pocket at the correct dimensions.

I used a paint brush to put just the right amount of glue in there. I want the glue to ooze out just a bit and fill up any gaps between the base and the strip.
Once these dry, I can put them onto the belt sander and bring them down flush with the base piece. They may take a tiny bit of filler, but they'll be ready for paint and I have perfect rectangular pockets now exactly to the blueprints.

Now that all of these are shaped, I can start mounting them onto the legs. First, the center legs:

I use enough glue to ooze out of the sides a bit and fill in any gaps, and I purposely made the curved piece a tiny bit wide. Once these are dry, I can return to the belt sander and bring them down flush with the base. Once I get the ankle pieces glued onto the legs, I'll put the slotted curved pieces on them too.

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