[Lego Table]: Part 15

Ah, back out in the shop. I can see in the long range forecasts that I’m starting to run out of days filled with relative warmth. Maybe another week or so. The clock is ticking on getting the top ready for priming and painting. I need it to stay above 50 degrees outside just a little longer.

Feeling the pressure, I jumped right in today. To make a nice smooth lip for the bottom to ride on in the bin, I thought using putty might make a nice smooth beveled lip.

Here’s what it looked like after application—remember, this is before sanding. Yes, it’s ugly.


While the putty dried (it needed 15 minutes before I could sand), I continued adding the running strips for the false bottoms in the other bin. Here’s my clamping process for the last bin, since I used all my clamps for the other bins:


I had to to get creative and use two scrap blocks as wedges to keep the thin little strip in place while the glue set up. Even had to use tape on this side:


It looked pretty nasty, but it got the job done. While that set up, I went back and applied putty to the pocket holes and all the other loose joints in the top.

Soon enough it was time for sanding. I smoothed out all the putty spots and discovered two things—I didn’t get it quite things quite smooth enough, so they needed another coat of putty and (2) I ran out of putty. Off to the store for some more—and they didn’t have the one I used (DAP), so I had to get Emlers. This went on in a gray-green paste, not the nice white of the DAP. Ah well, it’ll all be covered up by primer and paint, hopefully.

After all the tedious hand sanding of the little nooks and crannies in the bins, I broke out the orbital sander and hit top, rounding over the sharp edges of the corners.

I had an 80 grit disk installed so it really attacked the poplar. Then I went back with a block wrapped in 220 grit paper to get things buttery smooth. It took a long, long time, but I got everything smooth (even the second layer of putty in the bins!).

The last step for today (I was quickly running out of time—that sanding took forever) was to install the oak tops for the plywood bin dividers.


These little things are sliced and shaped at the band saw to fit the notches made by the sides and the backing coming together.
It hides the ugly striped end grain on the plywood and makes everything look more solid. It’ll all be covered by paint in the end, but will be a lot smoother now, I think.

Finally, I just wanted to add a little cap piece on the edging at the bottom to help secure the sliding piece. To fit it tight against the front wall, I used the miter gauge on the band saw (which, oddly enough, now that I have the Olson blade installed, the drift has been eliminated…the miter gauge is useful again! Strange…) with a block of scrap to get the piece a little closer at the right angle (about 40 degrees).


It worked, here’s the finished piece on one side:


I repeated this all the way around and had everything ready for priming. None too soon, since it looks like snow is on the way in a few days!

About Steven M. Vaught

A native son of Delaware, now living in Illinois, Steven is a writer, family historian, amateur astronomer, sometimes-gardener, woodworker, father to three wonderful children, husband to a wonderful wife, and caretaker of one cheeky vizsla.
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