|Here's the finished square.|
|This is the only square I have here.|
By and large I agree with him, but I figured if I made an accurate tool that looked nice, I would probably be able to keep it and use it for years to come.
I recently pulled an awful lot of awesome wood out of the Golden Dumpster. More than 100 linear meters of flat, 3/8" sapelle boards that are 3 1/2" wide and about six and a half feet long. Perfect for the blade of this square. The only problem being that one side is covered in white paint. I used paint stripper and then a card scraper to clean up the wood, and wound up with a blade about 5/16" thick, 3 1/4" wide and 17" long. For some reason this stuff is extremely difficult to plane, so I just left it at that, skipping the original tapered blade detail from Benjamin Seaton's squares.
The stock I chose was from an abandoned project of a plane build. Maybe I'll get back to that build someday. I have plenty more wood. This blank was already squared up and measured 1 1/4" x 2 1/4" x 11" or so. The only defect being that I had used a marking knife to lay out the angles for the plane I was working on before. I decided to leave those marks on the plane to remind me of where this wood came from. Oh, by the way, before it was going to be a plane, it was a stair rail that I found in the Golden Dumpster last year.
I didn't use any specialty tools for this build, except perhaps my new Veritas skew rabbet block plane that I got from Goerge. That plane wasn't necessary. One could use any old plane for the chamfers, but it's new, I have it, and it worked great.
I don't have a 5/16" mortise chisel here, so I decided to hog the waste out with an 8mm drill bit in my eggbeater drill. I marked where I was going to drill on each side, drilled three holes about half way, flipped the board over and drilled the rest of the way.
|Starting the mortise.|
|I started in the middle, and worked my way out.|
|Still needs some tweaking.|
I used my Dick saw (Ryoba) to cut the bridle joint on the top. This was way easier than I imagined it would be. Careful layout defined where to cut, then I just dropped the saw down to my mark. To get the waste out, I just chopped straight down to sever the fibers, then went in from the end to split out the waste, little by little.
|Nibbling away the bridle joint.|
|This part doesn't have to be deep. I think this is somewhere between 1/8" and 1/4"|
Before I glued it up, I cleaned up all the surfaces, added some nice chamfers to the non-precision areas, and put a roundover that I laid out with a five Euro cent coin. Once I was happy, I glued it up with hide glue and added a c-clamp to the bridle joint.
After it set, I removed the clamp, cleaned up the squeeze out, planed the back flat and added a couple of cosmetic wedges to make the joints look better.
Linseed oil and soft wax was applied, and I was almost done.
|I'm pretty proud of these joints.|
|Checking for square.|
No biggie, a few swipes with a plane and check it again. I soon had an edge that is very, very close to perfect.
I look forward to using this try square. It makes me happy to look at it. It should last me many years. If it goes out of square, it is a simple thing to tune it again like I did this first time.
Here's some detail shots:
|That little rabbet made this joint look very tight.|
|I wanted to practice this round over for a plane build.|
Next up: a famous celebrity will make a guest post about squares. You'll love it!