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Shoe Bench For The Mrs...

author-gravatar kryptix Nov 15, 2017

The full album can be found at:

This bench that I made for my wife was also my entry into the Reddit 2x4 challenge.  If you look in the album, I have a "before" picture showing the dollar store plastic shoe rack this is replacing.  My kids are already climbing up and jumping off.  I think the finish ended up going really well with the Cedar coat rack I made last month, and definitely about as well as I could hope for with cheap pine.  Definitely lots of challenges and I don't think I'm going to make any real projects with pine again in the near future.

The Shou sugi ban finish did make it super hard though and its very solid with 250 pounds on it, so all in all very happy with the project.

2x4 (It was in the shop, unfortunately it was only 7'9" and 3 3/8 x 1 3/8)

Book matching resawing, SOOOOO much tension, had to do it in 3 cuts and had to shut down the saw 3/4 of the way through the cut when the wood tried to close on the blade.

Book matching resawing

Panel glueup for the seat

Keeping spare parts clamped to keep them work-ably flat.

flattening the panel

big check on the leg blanks had to be cut off.

stretcher blanks and shelf blank

layout of the legs, with book matching

leg + top combinations

dry fit with scraps from the checked end to widen, keeping this orientation to avoid wood movement issues since grain is in the same direction as the top.

glue up leg blanks

prepare to resaw shelves

shelf sticks

initial layout

ugh oh, my little shelf horizontal pieces are too short

and i guess I didn't saw off enough to get past the weak split parts, this happened 5 times during the build on the legs

half laps cut

more half laps

dado dry fit

and the dry fit blows it up.

glue up the shelves (I think this took 5 attempts before they stayed together, sort of)

These kept splitting the wood or failing for some other reason

more shelves

leg split again, this time during dry fitting a shelf.

more regluing of shelves, dry fit of bench

reverse angle, it looks like its coming together

split again (shot with the remaining scraps)

and split again so reglue again

more failures

and a dry fit of the shelf

finally one survived sanding (they fell apart sanding several times)

Final dry fit

Glueup of the shelves and base

Shou sugi ban on the seat (as a test)  This was a bad idea, it warped the seat to a 3/8 cup on a 9/16th thick seat...



flattening the seat next to the glued base, seat panel was steamed and flattened with cauls, sorta worked.

took some scraps and added size to the feet under the lower shelf

dry fit the top

tried to brace the top with more scraps, one of the two blew up with the cupping pressure

high tension glueup of the seat to the stretchers

needed a good 2/3 of my clamps to close all the gaps since this crap loves to warp.


more clamps

that's all the scraps left



dyed next to the dollar store crap its replacing

first coat of arm-r-seal

several coats in

final look

different angle

one more angle



Trying to decide which direction looks better

Not sure which side I want facing out...

final remains of the 2x4


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