Thursday, April 9, 2009
Travel Bench Part 8
Can't really hold a 6' board vertically, so I had to come up with a quick and easy way of cutting the tails for the front laminate. An angled sliding fence was the answer.
To cut the other angle I just moved the jig's stop block to the other end of the fence.
I cut the shoulders on a table saw crosscut sled and finished up with a backsaw.
I rabbeted the tails so I had a nice shoulder for laying out the pins. I used a router with offset base for this.
I clamped the front laminate into position and checked the width of the slot for parallel.
Then marked the end cap to length.
After cutting the end cap to length clamped a scrap the same thickness as the tails between the dog hole strip and the front laminate and positioned everything for marking the pins.
I scribed lightly all around the tails.
I routed out most of the waste.
Then pared the rest.
The fit was decent, but I did have to glue in some thin wedges at the end grain to make it cosmetically attractive.
I laid out the end template on the end cap and marked the center points for the flange screws and clearance hole for the vise screw.
I drilled them out on the drill press.
I mount the screw to the end cap with regular nuts (not the nylon lock nuts that are provided with the vise) for quick removal, and check the rough alignment. I also make sure the sliding plate assembly completely clears the cavity its entire length. Looks good. At this point I removed the end cap and glued the front portion of the tenon, then reinstalled the end cap permanently with lock nuts. I then glued the front laminate in place, gluing the dovetails to the end cap.
Once the top is completely assembled I begin the vise installation. I lay the rails on the bench bottom and check for a little side-to-side play in the plate. I don't want it to bind. I then mark the location of the rails with a sharp pencil. I like to position the rails so the first screw falls in the end cap. This makes for a strong connection. The first screw in the front rail also falls in the dovetail, further locking this joint together.
This is the left hand vise.
I route the mortises for the guide rails. My top is right at 4", so the mortise is 1/4" deep.
I remount the screw and test the action. It's smooth. Sometimes the guides are out of parallel in the horizontal plane if the router didn't cut a consistent depth, or dust or chips get trapped. Cleaning out the mortise is the solution, or adding some thin paper shims.
With the plate about half way down the cavity, I can lift up and slide out the guide rails without having to remove the screw.
Once everything looks good I marked for pilot holes with a center punch directly through the guide rails, then mounted the vise.
The tops are virtually complete.
Posted by Jameel at 6:57 AM