|All mortises complete|
|This is the fit I like - snug, but not too tight|
|Not quite up to the layout line|
The only thing here is that after I plane off my layout lines prior to gluing up, I won't know where to seat this rail. There will be a little sideways play. I'll probably knife a light line over that layout line during a dry-fit to make sure I hit it right.
With the rails and legs for the front frame fitted together, it was on to the back frame. All parts had been pre-cut to length, so I ganged them together and set them in a vise, striking a knife line 7/8" (that's the tenon length) from one end. Another line was struck 13 1/2" from this line at the other end while the parts were still ganged together, ensuring each of the four parts will be the same length.
|Back rails and backrest rails ganged together and line knifed|
I cut the shoulders, sawed and/or chiseled the cheeks and fitted the tenons into the mortises without getting any pictures.
Shaping the backrest rails can be a challenging thing, but this is my fourth dining chair and I'm getting better at it. The Doug fir can be a bit brittle, so you really have to be careful when chiseling out the waste so as not to go beyond your layout lines.
|Upper and partially-shaped lower backrest rails, with template|
|Kerfs cut down to layout lines|
|Watch out for the grain direction when chiseling the waste|
|Chiseled close to layout line|
I've noticed lately that when marking a knife line on four sides of a board, I don't get them to meet perfectly at the last corner. I believe my material is square and I'm referencing my combo square off the face side and face edge. The knife I've used for a few years is this crummy "Flexcut" knife that really fits my hand great. In the following two pics, you can see it's beveled on both sides, so I lean it over when striking a line to compensate for the bevel.
|Flexcut knife and Crown Tools knife|
|Other side of each knife|
I decided to try a Crown Tools knife that I've had for several years, but never really liked. Well short story short, I used the Crown knife for the back frame rails and it seemed to give a better result. Unfortunately it's horribly uncomfortable in the hand. Maybe after sharpening the Flexcut many times I've given it a steeper bevel angle. Might need to experiment with this.
Up to now, I've really sucked at using the spokeshave. I got my only spokeshave from a gentleman I met on an airplane (Thanks, Phil). His wife noticed I was reading a WW magazine and she struck up a conversation. Turns out he had some extra hand tools that he wasn't using and he sent me some (on his dime, too). I love the generosity of the WW community.
|My Marples spokeshave|
Anyway, I'm getting better at sharpening and I think I'm finally sharpening the blade well. But I was getting some really bad chatter and getting frustrated. Paul Sellers posted (I don't remember if this was recent or older) about tuning up a spokeshave, including flattening the bed.
Turns out I never did that when I got the shave. So I worked it over a little with a small paddle-type diamond hone. Here's a close-up of the bed, showing areas where I removed uneven surfaces:
|Bed cleaned up|