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Dresser Drawer wonky – repair

Posted by is9582 on October 27, 2016 with No Commentsas , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

We have an old dresser that is almost 30 years old, that was purchased just before our son was born. It has some nice looking maple/curly maple on it and is fairly heavy, which lead us to believe it was well made. Unfortunately, this was around the time I was just cutting my teeth on some basic woodworking, so I didn’t dig into it as I would today.

I became aware that the top drawer was twisting in it’s track and it was a struggle to get the drawer in or out. As I was going through all of the excess stuff in the room, I pulled the drawer to see what exactly was happening. The drawers, which are each approximately 30″ wide, have one “T” shaped runner in the dead center of each level. The front end of the runners are screwed to the face frame, and initially it looked like the rear swung into what looked like a dado, with perhaps a dab of glue securing it. After completely removing the top runner, I saw there was a hole in the rear of the case, in the “dado section”, as well as signs a screw was driven into the rear end of the runner. The actions of the drawer must have created enough vibration to cause the rear screw to back out of the runner. Sure enough, I pulled the dresser away from the wall and there was one screw lying on the ground and it fit perfectly into the hole in the runner.

 

The runner for the top drawer in the dresser, with the screw intact at the red arrow, and the missing screw's location in the area of the blue arrows.

The runner for the top drawer in the dresser, with the screw intact at the red arrow, and the missing screw’s location in the area of the blue arrows.

 

The second part of the dresser issues is the fact that they installed a plastic guide on the rear of each drawer, to fit over the runner’s “T” shape. I know not all plastic is bad, but in this type of usage, it just doesn’t seem like it matches the drawer sizing, nor the level of the dresser’s original cost. The plastic guide on the problematic top drawer, had split at some point and one side section was gone.

 

Original undamaged plastic drawer guide, from another drawer in the dresser.

Original undamaged plastic drawer guide, from another drawer in the dresser.

 

Broken plastic guide from top drawer in this dresser.

Broken plastic guide from top drawer in this dresser.

 

I can’t tell if the screw popped out of the back first, and the ability of the rear section of the runner to swing from side to side applied extra side force to break the guide, or if the guide went first. I suppose at this point it really doesn’t make much difference.

With the runner from the top drawer already out, I took it to the shop as a template for a replacement guide. I found some cherry that looked like it would potentially work nicely.

I started with a piece of cherry that was about 6″ long, marked out the guide’s overall length, and marked a centerline to align with the center of the runner. I clamped the cherry in the face vise on my bench, and set my small square so the bottom of the runner was just slightly proud of the guide. I needed the bottom of the guide to just clear the face frame when installing the drawer. So with the rear of the runner sitting on the cherry, and the top of the runner against the square, I traced around the shape of the runner.

 

Cherry guide material clamped in the face vise, elevated slightly so my square could register against it to maintain the runner's orientation while drawing around it.

Cherry guide material clamped in the face vise, elevated slightly so my square could register against it to maintain the runner’s orientation while drawing around it.

 

Actual runner in place against the square, with the slight overhang. During the actual drawing around the runner, I squeezed between the base of the runner and the outside edge of the square's body.

Actual runner in place against the square, with the slight overhang. During the actual drawing around the runner, I squeezed between the base of the runner and the outside edge of the square’s body.

 

With the necessary opening of the guide defined, I used my Lie-Nielsen Crosscut saw to saw straight down at the two narrow vertical lines, until I reached the top of the intended opening. Shifting to my Knew Concepts saw, I cut along the horizontal lines, leaving only the the narrow vertical sections uncut. I used my small 1/4″ palm chisel from Czeck Edge Tools to methodically remove the remaining wood.

 

After creating the area to evacuate on the guide, I clamped the cherry in a small turn-screw, while clamping the turn-screw in the face vise. This elevated the piece to a nice height for sawing.

After creating the area to evacuate on the guide, I clamped the cherry in a small turn-screw, while clamping the turn-screw in the face vise. This elevated the piece to a nice height for sawing.

 

Here is the guide straight from the saw, but still it's full length, but the location for shortening is drawn.

Here is the guide straight from the saw, but still it’s full length, but the location for shortening is drawn.

 

I tested the fit and it was too tight widthwise, for the runner to completely enter the created opening in the guide. I used a small file to carefully remove wood, testing every so often, until the desired fit was established. All of the sharp edges were gently rounded to provide the best opportunity for the guide and runner to interact well together. Lastly I applied my Lie-Nielsen stick of paraffin to the mating surfaces of the guide and runner, and rubbed them in to help obtain the best performance.

 

Testing the actual runner in the guide, before cutting the guide to final length.

Testing the actual runner in the guide, before cutting the guide to final length.

 

The final guide after all filing and sanding was complete.

The final guide after all filing and sanding was complete.

 

I’ll include the installation information in one of my next blog entries. Thank you for stopping by and checking out the article. Please let me know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions.

Lee Laird

@LeeLairdWoodworking – Instagram

@LeeLairdWW – Twitter

Ideas for making gifts

Posted by is9582 on October 26, 2016 with No Commentsas , , , , , , ,

I recently wrote another article for Highland Woodworking, for their Christmas idea special, and here is a link so you can check it out.

I’ve written many articles for Highland Woodworking since 2010 and you can search their Blog using my first and last name, which will locate the majority. As info, most of those articles are unique, while focusing on hand tools, and are not duplicated here on my personal blog.

More content to come here on my site soon.

Thank you for stopping by and let me know if you have any questions or comments.

 

Lee Laird

@LeeLairdWoodworking – Instagram

@LeeLairdWW – Twitter

Peter Wright Anvil – help

Posted by is9582 on October 6, 2016 with No Commentsas , , , , , , , ,

As I’ve written, I have a 145# Peter Wright that definitely has some age on it, as well as was more than a paper-weight. After the anvil was cleaned up (thank you Andrew), I noticed a thing or two that was hidden or perhaps just blended into the background.

One of the things I couldn’t previously make out (not that it is easily legible now), was the fact that below the line that has Wright on it, there is a partial line that looks to say Patent. One of the previous owners seemed to make a lot of punches or similar, and liked to test at least some aspect on the body of the anvil. I’m sure Peter Wright fans are probably cringing right now, and believe me, I understand. As far as I can tell, the weight stamps on the side of the anvil have all but been obliterated, and I can’t tell whether there was any indication regarding being made from wrought iron or not.The rebound characteristics more than offset the damage to the anvil’s body, otherwise I’d likely have kept looking for another anvil.

 

A photo of the side of this same anvil, showing the signs of testing tools that were possibly made on this baby.

A photo of the side of this same anvil, showing the signs of testing tools that were possibly made on this baby.

 

There are some letters on the front edge of the foot below the horn (bick), facing in the same direction. There are two capital “E” stamped extremely deep, each a couple of inches from the outside tip of this foot, but on different sides of the anvil center-line. With some of the anvils that have been around for a long time, some of the details can easily hide in dents, scratches, dings or the such, and the darkening/staining resulting from previous rusting, can make it quite difficult to know for sure if what you are seeing is a letter or an intended mark, or just a mark from time. These two stamped letters on the other hand, are absolutely part of the anvil, and just based on the depth of strike, look like they were applied when the body was still at a strong heat.

 

Zoomed out slightly in order to get both of the stamped E's in the frame.

Zoomed out slightly in order to get both of the stamped E’s in the frame.

 

Closeup photo of the front edge of the foot under the bick. Capital E is deeply stamped.

Closeup photo of the front edge of the foot under the bick. Capital E is deeply stamped.

 

I’ve read that some of the Peter Wright anvils that were intended for export, had a Made in England stamp on the body. On the anvils that were sold to customers or businesses in England, is there any chance they might use the capital E in this manner, as a abbreviation as the purchasers would already know where they were made? Heck, I guess it could be as simple as an indicator of who made this specific anvil, so if someone complained they would have a trail back to the slacker. 😉

I would really appreciate anyone’s input in this mystery. If you have a thought, you can either add a comment to this page, or email me direct at LeeLairdWoodworking@gmail.com . Thank each of you for stopping by and checking out the article and site. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

 

Lee Laird

@LeeLairdWoodworking – InstaGram

@LeeLairdWW – Twitter

How to get a great finish

Posted by is9582 on October 2, 2016 with No Commentsas , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I was recently working on one of my hand-made knives, and while finishing my curly-maple handle, I remembered a technique I’d use on some of my smaller wooden products that I don’t think I ever wrote about before. I decided it would be something good to share with my readers, beyond the aspect of it […]