Thursday, January 12
Ribbon Strip Panels
Getting the wood "square" is quite important if you want pieces to fit together well, and in a glued-up panel a good fit is paramount to success.
The table saw is equipped with a thin kerf blade and used to cut the blanks into a series of ribbon strips. Care is taken to keep the strips in order and oriented. This step can take a while when doing it all by myself. When I had help the helper would stand on the back side of the saw and take the ribbon strips off as I cut them. I could cut them one after another: zip-zip-zip and the job was done in short order. Doing it by myself I run the blank through to cut one ribbon strip, then walk around the saw to take it off the back (because leaning over a whirling saw blade to try to reach the strip to remove it is an extraordinarily stupid and dangerous thing to do - especially when you're short like me and have to really reach to get to that cut off piece) set the strip on the right table wing, walk back around front, pick-up my push stick, cut another ribbon, lay down my push stick, walk around back, take the trip off and set it on the wing, walk around front, pick-up my push stick... tedious to read about? Try doing it non-stop for an hour or two.
I use a couple of strips of masking tape to bind the panel together, fold it over and take it to the assembly room.
While the glue sets up, I go cut more ribbons, arrange them into a panel, tape it, fold it and bring it in for gluing. I do this all day. As I'm writing this my 5th panel is about ready to come out of the clamps. As soon as I'm done with this I'll go take the 5th one out of the clamps, glue and clamp the 6th panel, then scrape the 5th. The 6th one can sit in the clamps overnight. It's getting late, I'm getting tired. Tomorrow we'll dress these panels.
See you tomorrow!