Joe Abbott's Weblog

Letters home to mom

Time flies

Posted by joeabbott on December 29, 2013

Well, I’m now about a week away from getting ready for work again. The time off has been insanely wonderful but I’m really feeling the pressure of not having the cabinets in the front room done by now. I’d earlier thought I’d be working on the final fix-up items now but I see now that I’ll be lucky to complete the entire job before I return to work!

I haven’t been hugely diligent but I have continually worked on it. Unfortunately, I have had a LOT of glue-up work and that just takes time to do. First, I only have one set of cauls to ensure I get things mated up correctly, and then I have to wait for the glue to set. Just takes time.

Yesterday (12/28)

For the last couple days, I’ve been gluing up the vertical panels. As a quick refresher, here’s the cabinet with one of the seven Vertical walls labeled:


The entire cabinet has three full-sized verticals (walls that go from the front edge to the back … these are the ends and center walls) and then four short verticals (two on each side of the center wall … they’re 3” shy of the front edge to allow the sliding doors to pass). All of the interior walls have 3”x6” notch cut into the upper back corner of the panel … these pass-thru holes will allow electrical cables to run to an outlet hidden behind the cabinet.

So, I’d started to glue up these panels on 12/26 and was at it thru 12/28. In that time I also got three of the horizontal panels done (all but the very upper/top panel) … and by “done’, I mean butted up and a full 12’ long.

To be honest, I hadn’t intended on working on gluing up the panels just now, I had wanted to start cutting the grooves, dadoes, and slots for the sliding doors, but when Suzy helped me to drop the bottom panel on the sub-bottom panel, I found they were slightly different sizes and I didn’t’ want to start cutting grooves and dadoes until I had all the other parts created.

While letting the glue dry on the parts (to speed things up, I’d let them partially set while in the garage but after taking the clamps off, I’d move them inside), I played a few video games. I completed A Wolf Among Us (a quick story-based game) and started playing Zoo Tychoon. While I’d play more Wolf, I’m not sure I plan on spending too much more time with Zoo. Suzy sat with me, so that was a bonus, but it was pretty time-intensive to get a good zoo going, so that may not be where I want to spend a lot of time.

Today (12/29)

I started today by heading into Bellevue to meet up with an old friend and his wife, along with Suzy we enjoyed a dim sum meal but more than that, we enjoyed two hours of chatting and catching up. While we largely sipped tea, we sampled the menu and enjoyed some idle time filling in the gaps on what they’d been up to and what they had planned. It was an enjoyable time and, as with all friends, made me wonder why we didn’t get together more often.

When I got home, I had a lot of work before me.

Simply put, I had to square up the verticals walls, ensure the inner walls (short verticals) were all the same depth, the full-sized verticals were all the same depth, and that all panels were the same height. That took a long time. I had to scrape away dried glue, ensure I had a good reference end, and then ensure all parts with a common dimension passed through the table saw when it was set for that part-dimension.

Then I had to cut the back pass-thru slot. I created a template, penciled that onto each inner wall, and then rough-cut it with a band saw. After it was close, I clamped the wall to the template and ran a router with a pattern bit along it. It did a wonderfully clean job but there was some splintering on one end. Where the router ended the cut, the wood wanted to fray something fierce, so I had to pre-slice the fibers with a razor blade-knife to ensure I wouldn’t fray.It seemed to work well.

Then there was all the sanding and marking parts so I knew where they’d go and which ends to put in/out.

And that was my day. Pretty busy.

Tomorrow (12/30)

I’m not positive exactly how much I’ll get done tomorrow, but the plan will be to cut the slots, grooves, dadoes. The horizontal parts are all inside, so I’ll likely do what cutting I have to do right in the living room. It’ll make a mess, but I think I can get away without causing too much of a disaster. I didn’t take pictures today or yesterday: gluing up and sanding panels didn’t seem like an interesting part of the project; but I’ll be sure to take some tomorrow.

Thanks for dropping in!


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