Cherry

13 Oct

I found a beautiful piece of American Cherry at John Boddy’s Timber in Boroughbridge Yorkshire. Thanks to the knowledge of Arty, who works there, we winkled out a 21 inch wide, 1.8 inch thick by 14 foot long slab of perfectly straight cherry. I am using part of it to make a dished seat for a shoe cabinet.

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The trick is to scoop out the central area of the board by running it carefully across the face of a bench saw. The circular profile of a 12 inch radius blade is perfect for carving out shallow trenches along the length of the board to rough out a nice hollow for a seat. The idea then is to refine the dished profile by carving with a decent sized gouge, like these lovely Stubai chisels. By working on the raised timber profiles left in the wood you can gradually smooth out a shallow concavity.

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Here the end grain of the board is shown with the dish profile clearly seen in cross section. A soft abrasive pad on a circular sander takes all remaining blemishes from the profile and leaves a lovely smooth seat – perfect for any backside.

This kind of carving also has the effect of enhancing the figuring in the board…

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All I have to do now is wait for the glue to set on the seat racks to complete the piece. The carcass is built from oak and elm wood to resist rotting, and all the laths are made from cedar of Lebanon to counteract the stinky boots, trainers and sports footwear which will be tidied away in it.

seat 5

Autumn weather may have descended in dreary grey clouds, but working on this warm, pink slab of american cherry in my workshop has filled my head with colour. I am anticipating the pleasure of a valued client when I deliver his cherry red, burnished seat-cum-shoe store to him.

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