Editor’s note: Dean Jansa is a dyed-in-the-wool traditional hand-tool woodworker who helped ignite many of the ideas behind my book on workbenches. At our request, Jansa gracious agreed to let us post some of his hand-tool tutorials he prepared for a Google Group. This first tutorial coves some of the basic strokes when sticking a moulding by hand.
— Christopher Schwarz
I was making a simple molding for a chest I am working on and thought I’d document the process. If you want to watch someone who really knows what they are doing I recommend Don McConnell’s DVD “Traditional Molding Techniques: The Basics.”
I’ve followed the same steps he outlines in the DVD, but Don does a better job of describing the steps than I probably will.
The first step, after deciding on the profile, is to lay the profile out on the edge of the stock and cut a series of steps with a fillister that will later guide the hollows and rounds. Note: It appears that I am cutting the steps on the edge of a large piece of stock. I’m not. That rough board is just used as a makeshift fence to turn my entire benchtop into a long sticking board.
It is a good idea to build your bench as long as you can. My bench is just a bit longer than 8’, and I stick the molding on a piece as long as I can fit on my bench. When creating moldings by hand there will be natural variations in the profile along its length. If you stick the profile as one long piece you can then wrap the moulding around the entire case and have profile match at the corners. The profiles, over the short distance needed to cut the miter, will match. So build a long bench!
Here you can see the resulting steps left by the fillister. There’s no need to worry about a little tear-out, the hollows and rounds will remove more stock and they are pitched higher than my fillister, which reduces tearing).
Next I cut the concave portion with a round plane.
Then the convex portion with a hollow plane.
Finally, cut the last bit of profile on the top of the molding with a hollow. (I didn’t take a photo, sorry.) Here is the resulting molding.
Finally, wrap the moulding around the case. First cut the front molding from the middle of the long board, then cut the sides from the pieces cut from the left and right of the front molding. Here it is on the case.
— Dean Jansa