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Thread: Outdoor bench of ash

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Outdoor bench of ash

    I made a bench some time ago out of a spruce log, with poplar legs. After a few years with the bench continuously outdoors, I found myself on my uh, bottom, when the legs rotted out.

    So yesterday, I began a replacement, out of an ash slab, with ash legs. I worked up quite a sweat hollowing and smoothing a concave top. I used a wooden scrub plane, scorps and my new LV pull shave [stealth gloat.] The only problem with the slab was a split on one end. An opportunity to try out a dovetail or butterfly key.

    In the past, I've shaped the legs with a drawknife, but I was tired after shaping the top from rough to a mild concave surface, so I took the easier path and turned them. Unlike my son, I am a lousy turner. But at least the legs should be functional. The tenons are of different lengths because the slab has different thicknesses at the four places where the legs will go.

    The rough surface in the first image is the bottom, but shows what kind of surface I started with. Not finished yet, but I should get the holes drilled for the legs in the next few days.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails bottom.jpg   top end.jpg   key.jpg   legs.jpg   top.jpg  


  2. #2
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    Dec 2006
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    Looks really nice Ken. Did you split that slab yourself?

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Thanks Bill, IIRC, I ripped the log in half with my chainsaw, for Ben to use for natural edge bowls. He got the other half. I split the bottom of the slab off.

  4. #4
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    Looking good so far, Ken. I'm guessing you cut the butterfly key by hand, and not with a router and template. Am I correct?
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
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    Nov 2006
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    Odessa, Tx
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    Looking Good, Ken. The butterfly came out real nice too.

  6. #6
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    Jul 2009
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    Amherst, New Hampshire
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    Very nice, I've never tried to make a butterfly before. Looks great.
    Faith, Hope & Charity

  7. #7
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    Oct 2006
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    Vaughn, I cut out the key on my bandsaw, but I did the mortise for it with chisels. I must admit that I hogged out some of the waste with a hand held electric drill and a forstner bit. Bob, this is my first butterfly, it was easier than I expected.

    Not quite 100% Neander.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Delton, Michigan
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    nice work ken, i would suggest yu treat the legs with something to help prevent rot.. ash goes quick outside where it can get moister readily like on the legs the seat area will be longer lived because it can dry out. nice key work.. got some of those coming up in my future as well.
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  9. #9
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    Larry, do you think a dip in BLO would be adequate? Other suggestions?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
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    185
    Hi Ken,

    Great looking project so far!

    I am curious, how far in did you let the key?
    Regards,
    Bill Antonacchio

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