As I rushed out of the shop to drive to the French Oak Roubo Project, I snapped this quick photo of my teak campaign chest to keep with me, like a photo of my sweetheart during wartime.
I hate to leave a project at this stage – all the hardware is fitted and just needs to be screwed down. Then I just have to make a couple small repairs and do the final clean-up before applying the finish.
Installing the pulls was the most difficult part of the project. After a cock-up with a powered router (and getting spanked for it on my blog at Popular Woodworking), I read all the readers’ thoughtful (cough) suggestions and ignored them completely.
The best way to install these pulls has absolutely nothing to do with a router. But it does use electricity. The secret weapon: a cheap flatbed scanner.
The rest of the work was with a good chisel and a mallet. I could not be more pleased with the fit.
The finish on this piece is going to be fairly minimal. The basecoat will be a couple coats of garnet shellac – Tiger Flakes from Tools for Working Wood. These are the best flakes I’ve encountered so far. And then I’m going to apply a coat of satin lacquer because I’m quite good at that finish, and I like the way it looks.
But before I can get to that, I will spend the weekend teaching a class at Kelly Mehler’s School of Woodworking on building precision layout tools. It’s a fun class in a verdant location. But a little bit of my midbrain will be fixated on Monday when I am reunited with my chest.
— Christopher Schwarz