Curly Maple, White Pine
MAKING THE DOCUMENT CHEST
After the stock has been thicknessed, ripped to width, and cut to length, plough a 1/4″ X 3 /8″ groove on the inside faces of the front, back and two ends. This groove will receive the raised panel that will separate the upper storage chamber from the drawer compartment. Then cut through dovetails for the four corners of the case (this process is detailed in the sidebar below). Glue the joints and assemble the case around the raised panel that separates its two sections. Shape the moulded edge on the top and bottom of the lid and on the top side of the chest’s bottom. Fasten the bottom to the case with ten 1 1/2″ no. 10 wood screws. These pass through oversized holes drilled in the bottom to allow tor seasonal expansion and contraction across its width. Although the Shaker original didn’t have them, I installed a pair of sturdy ash cleats on the underside of the lid to prevent it from cupping—a problem I encountered the first time I built one of these chests. Build the drawer next (see the sidebar below) with through dovetails at the rear and half-blind dovetails at the front. Slide the drawer bottom into its groove and tack it up into the drawer back. Then fit the length of the completed drawer by planing thickness from a pair of softwood strips tacked to the back side of the drawer. Complete the chest by finishing the wood and installing the hardware.