Wednesday, December 28

Making the footboard and crown are my tasks for today, so I start by cutting the 8° bevel on the lower edge of the blank.  Then, using the sled I built, trim the footboard sides to the required 8° angle.
 Next I line up the lower edge with the lower edge of a side and determine where the upper edges will be.  Using the template I trace the shape into the blank and cut it out on the band saw.
 Using my spindle sander (here equipped with the oscillating belt sander attachment) I smooth the cuts, work the shape to the line and by tilting the table impart the 8° bevel on this edge.

The tight area in the V at the center is smoothed and shaped with a sanding stick I make by gluing sandpaper to a large craft stick or scrap of plywood using spray contact cement.
 The crown piece is next.  Here I start by cutting the sloped sides on the miter saw.  I strap a backer block to the lower edge with masking tape on both sides to make the part more stable against the fence as I cut these slopes.  This saw does not cut quite all the way across, so I'll finish off the cuts with a back saw, then sand the nib smooth on the belt sander.

I do not cut the scrolly lower edge yet: I want to take the width directly off the cradle rather than trusting a template, so I wait until later to complete this piece.
 I chuck a round-over bit into the router table and round off the upper edges of the cradle sides and footboard.  This is not a large round-over, just enough to break the sharp edges where a young one might bonk a noggin.
 Then I begin assembling the sides to the headboard and footboard to form the basic box of the cradle.  I'm drilling counter-bored pilot holes and using screws to hold it together.  No glue yet; I still have some finish sanding to do on the interior, but want to do that last - just before final assembly.

Now I can fit the crown piece so it fits precisely between the arms.

I cut the angles on the ends of the crown using the miter saw while I still have a straight, solid lower edge to set against the fence.
 Then I cut it out on the band saw and use the spindle sander to smooth away the saw marks and take the final shape down to the template line.

Again the center part is shaped by hand with a sanding stick.
Test fitting the crown piece, I'll sand a little more here or there to get a perfect fit at the ends.  When I'm happy with it, I bore a screw hole in each end and insert the screws.

I need to round-over the lower edges of this part as well, but I'm out of time for today.  I'll finish this piece off tomorrow, then mate the cradle body to the base plate.

Thanks for dropping in, hope you come back again tomorrow for more.

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