We’re building 15 six-board chests this weekend at the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking. But after the first day, all we have to show for our labor are six boards.
One of the students asked me: “Are we going to be able finish these chests tomorrow?”
“Nah,” I said.
This was the wrong answer. So I changed my tune. “Of course we are!” I replied.
Getting six good boards is half the battle with these chests, and we fought that one tooth and nail today. Well, there were no nails used (that’s tomorrow), though some of the boards looked a little toothy after flattening them with fore planes and jointer planes.
So somehow we have to get these chests built in one day. My usual solution is to do what the Kentucky Legislature used to do when they had to pass a budget by midnight. One of the legislators would stand up on his desk, take down the wall clock and turn the hands back by three hours.
Other possible solutions: nail guns, hot-melt glue and a Bedazzler.
Lucky for me I have my secret weapon with me: Carl Bilderback. Yup, Carl drove all the way out here from Indiana to assist me with this class plus a tool chest class in the coming week. He’s been helping diagnose problems and giving lessons on stock prep and edge jointing.
Everyone needs a Carl. He’s the best kind of assistant: Always willing to lend a hand or offer an additional viewpoint to mine.
OK, to sleep. And dream of chests.
— Christopher Schwarz