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With a cutting board that preserves the edge of the knives, a chopping block facilitates the preparation of meat and vegetables, in the kitchen as in the garden. Its manufacture, however, requires a good mastery of woodworking.

Make a cedar block

Difficulty: 3/4
Cost: 200 € (including 57 € cutting board)
Time: 3 days
Equipment: clamp, mallet, square, ruler, chisel, saw (japanese saw), truss, combined wood or chisel, miter saw, slitting machine, drill-driver, ripper
Find the plan of this realization
on duitdesign.com/boutique

Traditional logs have a very thick top end wood (vertically oriented fibers), intended to receive slicing shots. This part, called the board, is regularly scraped to remove meat residues, and eventually digging to acquire an irregular curved shape.

A solid structure

Today, professionals prefer to use high-density polyethylene (HDPE) planks, available in specialized stores and on the Internet (az-boutique.fr, laboutiquedeschefs.com, etc.). Advantage of this material: it does not damage the cutting edge of the tools. But if one is not afraid to sharpen his knife blades often, one can also use a marble. All craft furniture is built to withstand heavy use. This log, which is no exception, consists of cross sections and cross sections 50 x 50 or 50 x 36 mm, assembled with tenons and mortises.

Precision assembly

Precision assembly

It is a habit in joinery, one digs the mortises before cutting the tenons, because the section of the tools of digging is fixed, whereas the thickness of the tenons can be modulated.
Because of the many assemblies, it is advantageous to work with the combination wood. A square chisel mortiser is the ideal tool. To make tenons, a saw with back is enough to cut the sides and the arasements.
The sides can also be cut to the router or circular saw, and the miter saws. But there is an equally powerful solution that uses a Domino (Festool) milling machine to replace the mortise and tenon joints with pieces of wood (called "pigeons").
For the drawer, it is possible to use a comparable tool (as here): a slat milling machine.

1 TRACÉ OF ASSEMBLIES

1 TRACÉ OF ASSEMBLIES

On wood pieces with a cross section of 50 x 50 mm, mark the location of the joints with a square. To avoid deception, draw the symmetrical pieces at the same time (for example, the crosspieces of the base).

Make a cedar block: machine

Using a truscan, draw the width of the mortises and the thickness of the corresponding tenons.

Make a cedar block: sides

It is advisable to hatch the parts to be removed on the drawing of the mortises, because the multiplication of the lines (in particular on the low side members) can mislead you.

Make a cedar block: make

The pattern of the tenons with the truscan also extends on the end wood. Again, hatch the parts to be removed.

2 MACHINING THE MORTISES

2 MACHINING THE MORTISES

To dig the mortises by hand, use a mortise width chisel (12 mm) to cut the fibers and a wide chisel (40 mm) to smooth the sides (in the direction of the fibers).

Make a cedar block: block

The mortises are joined by their bottoms (upper end of the uprights) and must always be deeper about 5 mm than the tenons. Preferably use a square chisel mortiser to save time. The investment is justified if you regularly work with wood.

3 CUTTING THE TENONS

3 CUTTING THE TENONS

Making tenons by hand is not very complicated, provided you use a quality saw back (firmly clamped piece on the workbench). Cut the sides, then make the levelings (or conversely). With a Japanese saw (Dozuki), the cut is done by pulling towards you.

If you have a router, you can mount a small circular saw blade to machine the sides of the tenons.

Make a cedar block: machine

If you have a router, you can mount a small circular saw blade to machine the sides of the tenons.

Make a cedar block: machine

The leveling is then done with the miter saw after adjusting the depth of cut. You can also use a band saw or table saw to make the tenons in two passes.

Make a cedar block: block

Try assemblies frequently. If necessary, correct the sides and cut a slight chamfer at the end of the tenon.

4 ASSEMBLY OF SHELF AND SIDES

4 ASSEMBLY OF SHELF AND SIDES

Eight blades make up the bottom shelf. Before assembly (grating way), sand them (sides and edges) with a shim equipped with a sandpaper of strong grain (80), then medium to fine (120 to 180).

Make a cedar block: sides

Stick the mortises of the low stringers with a slow-setting vinyl glue. Use a round brush or directly the bottle of glue. It is not necessary to glue the bottom of the mortises.

Make a cedar block: sides

Flange together with four clamps. Place them at the ends of the frame: two in the direction of the rails and two in the direction of the rails. Check the squareness of the whole.

Make a cedar block: block

Then prepare the upper frame for receiving the HDPE cutting board. Squeeze the open tenons and mortises on the frame before tightening them with four clamps.

Make a cedar block: machine

On the sides, the uprights comprise three aligned mortises (one of which opens). The intermediate crossbar, which also serves as a support for the drawer, includes a burying instead of tenons.

Make a cedar block: block

After assembling the sides, present the intermediate beams in their mortises to trace the cut to be made on the intermediate sleepers (saw backpack), in order to adjust the struts relative to the longitudinal members.

Info +
The cutting board is inserted into a rabbet, made using a template formed of a panel fixed on a frame (photos opposite). Its dimensions take into account the difference between the radius of the sole of the router and that of the Ø 24 mm milling cutter. This difference is added to the dimensions of the cutting board to obtain the internal dimensions of the template.

Make a cedar block: machine

To make a perfect rebate to the router, prepare a template that will serve as a guide to the machine.

Make a cedar block: sides

Center the frame of the block in the template, then hold it in place (screwing from below through the panel).

Make a cedar block: sides

Adjust the depth of cut of the router, so that the rabbet lets the cutting board stand out about 5 mm.

5 MANUFACTURE OF THE BACK OF THE FURNITURE AND THE DRAWER

5 MANUFACTURE OF THE BACK OF THE FURNITURE AND THE DRAWER

Present the back (19 mm plywood panel) and the rear rails to trace the machining marks of the flat dowels or pins according to the chosen assembly method.

Make a cedar block: cedar

Cut or drill the parts to be assembled with the chosen tool (here, a slat milling machine).

Make a cedar block: block

The piece being clamped on the workbench, the machine is simply supported. Use standard flat dowels (# 20).

Make a cedar block: make

Glue, place the dowels (dominoes or trunnions) in the notches, then tighten the rails on both sides of the panel.

Make a cedar block: sides

Glue, place the dowels (dominoes or trunnions) in the notches, then tighten the rails on both sides of the panel.

Make a cedar block: sides

Cut out the sides, back and drawer front at 45° (miter saw), then groove them according to the thickness of the drawer bottom (8 mm). If there is no router, use a circular saw, a router, or even a slat milling machine.

Make a cedar block: cedar

Place a shim on the front stop of the slat mill and tilt it 45° to cut the miter cuts.

Make a cedar block: sides

Brace the parts on the workbench, mark centering marks, and cut after positioning the machine at 45°.

Make a cedar block: sides

Glue, place the slats n° 20 in the notches, insert the bottom in melamine chipboard of 8 mm, tighten the drawer with clamps.

Make a cedar block: cedar

Center and screw a shell handle on the front.

6 SQUARE AND FINISH

6 SQUARE AND FINISH

Gluing and clamping are preferably done on the workbench, which is returned to work flat and at a good height to check the squareness. Place a clamp in the axis of each element to be assembled. Leave in press the time of drying.

Make a cedar block: cedar

Drill pilot holes in the rabbet of the upper frame. Screw it on its base with wood screws (Ø 5 x 60 mm).

Make a cedar block: sides

Position the drawer before gluing side slides to the intermediate rails. Place thin shims between the drawer sides and the slider to maintain a running clearance.

Essence and finish

Essence and finish

• Planed wood can be bought in a sawmill or on the Internet (dejeuneraujardin.com, laboutiquedubois.com, etc.). If you have the proper equipment to delineate and plan it yourself, you will realize substantial savings, which can be invested in choosing quality wood. The model made here is cedar, but almost all species of medium or high density are suitable.
• For finishing, it is better to choose a hard oil: it is not likely to peel and easily maintain itself by applying a very thin layer when the surface becomes dull.


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