Bombe Chest on Chest – Day 2

Yesterday, we made a lot of progress and will hopefully stand the bottom case at the end of today, Day 3. Frank goes home this evening and won’t be back until after the Holidays so the Bombe will be on hold until he returns. There will be a blog on the Bombe tomorrow though, just lettin’ ya know.


Okay, so yesterday we accomplished a lot of tasks but mostly still removing wood. We got the inside completed, glued up our dividers, made the template for removing the material on the outside, hand planed the inside, and so on, here are photos of what went on yesterday.


Yesterday we finished ‘whittling’ the inside of the case sides, the photos above show what we were left with after the table saw work. Notice the stair steps as we did not angle the dado although as I mentioned yesterday, you can if you want to take the time.


I mentioned yesterday that we did not cut the top divider sliding dovetail with the hand held router, here are a couple of photos showing the process we used yesterday to cut it.


Okay, so at this point it was time to clean up the inside and smooth the shape. To do this, we made a template, the following photos show the process we did to make it.

We used a scrap piece of wood and transferred the pattern of the curved side to it and then band sawed the shape. We made a total of four of these templates so that one could be attached to the front and back of each side. To fill in the tear out we used auto body filler and then sanded smooth. It’s best to make these in pairs so that the front and the back are identical.


We then prepared the sides for the hand planing. To do this we used a long flush trim bit in the hand held router to smooth the edges so that we know where to plane to. Note that I do not rout close to my sliding dovetail slots because that is a flat surface I will index off of later when dovetailing the dividers, more on that when we do the process, but for now, leave a little distance when you come to the slots.


Note in the photo that the larger planes do not do the best job in planing the curvature.

My favorite plane to use for this task is the small one on the right in the photo above, the #92 Stanley Rabbet Plane.

While doing the hand planing, make sure you keep a straight edge close by so that you can constantly check that you are as flat and smooth as possible.


These photos show the insides after they have been hand planed.


Now we began to work on shaping the outside. In order to do this, we must make a new template.

On another piece of wood, we traced the profile of the inside.


The we went to the band saw and cut out the shape and smoothed it out to use as a pattern.


Next, we laid the pattern on another piece of wood and using a wheel or washer to track the profile 7/8“ larger we can easily draw a mirror image. Note that you need to pick a washer that allows the pencil point to be the distance from the pattern that will be the thickness of your side, in this case, 7/8“.


For the ends (straight areas) I used a combination square set at 7/8“.


Next we band sawed the outer profile and then traced it onto the sides of the mahogany, now this template becomes the “set up“ stick for my saw (I‘ll attach to my miter slide) to whittle away the material on the outside using the same technique we used for the inside.


As mentioned above, we began whittling away the outside material, this photo shows our first pass across the table saw.


We have an issue – I didn’t think about the fact that we had left the sides at about 3 7/8” thick instead of going down to 3” and my 8” dado head isn’t high enough.

So after a bit of grumbling, we got a 10“ saw blade and kerfed the thicker parts. The wafers will be snapped off and hand planed smooth, not a big issue, but certainly an issue!


The other thing we accomplished yesterday was gluing up our dividers. I like to glue the mahogany to poplar, it makes for a stronger and more stable piece. The original had solid mahogany dividers and the drawers had cut into them pretty severely. We wanted a little more durability.

After glue up, a pass over the jointer to be sure all is straight and flat.


Well, that covers Day 2, be back tomorrow with day 3. Later!

This entry was posted in Bombe Chest on Chest, Furniture Builds, Furniture Making, Woodworking and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Bombe Chest on Chest – Day 2

  1. Kevin says:

    This is making me want to become a woodworker instead of a hack.

  2. david harms says:

    wow you guys made quick work of those!

    i like the tip on flush trimming to know where to plane to and also the tip on the thinner shoulder plane to match the curves.. i wasnt able to find the exact video but i think i remember Tommy (aka t-chisel) making a curved bottom plane for making similar sides.

  3. david, i have radius planes and one that will actually adjust , but the little stanley 92 rabbet plane, was just all to fast…took a while but it got it done

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