Hillbilly Mini Tansu-Progress 5

Slow and steady best describes my progress thus far.  Which is a good thing, I think.  There is absolutely no reason for me to be in a hurry and the process is much more enjoyable with the slower pace.  I’m not being deliberately slow, just deliberately not in a hurry.  By taking my time I can evaluate what I have done as well as what comes next.

Anyway, today I started by fabricating the sliding door.  Originally I had planned to create the door with breadboard ends.  The drawback to this method is the exposed end grain of the breadboard ends.  On a table top this does not look out of place.  However, on this small door I’m afraid it would be distracting.  So I opted for a single slab door.  Pine, once acclimated, is very stable and has very little expansion and contraction due to to seasonal changes.  Time will tell if my decision was wise or not.

The door rides in shallow bottom groove and a much deeper top groove.  This arrangement allows for the door to be lifted in and out of the assembly as necessary.  After sizing the slab I added the required rebates to the top and bottom to creates the tenons that ride in the previously mentioned grooves. I designed this little cabinet so that either the left or the right side can be used as an open display area.  This requires door to  align with the case in either position.  A little fussy but not that difficult to pull off.  With the door fitted and operating smoothly I tackled the decorative elements.

To repeat the elements of the case I added a beaded frame detail around the door.  I then used the wood burner again to create the darkened groove of the bead.  After this I added some Hillbilly Inlay to the field using the asano pattern.  Once this was in place I added a 45deg line pattern to create a border detail between the field and the bead.  I then rubbed instant coffee crystals into the incised lines and added a coat of BLO to set the coffee.

Door positioned on the left.

Door positioned on the left.


Door positioned on the right.


With the door completed I turned my attention to the drawer fronts.  My only goal was to size the drawer fronts.  When I make drawers, I create the fronts so that they just barley start into their respective openings.


I used my remaining shop time today to add some additional Hillbilly Inlay to the case.  After spending this past week looking at the case I decided that more infill was required to balance out the overall design.  So I added infill lines to the corners of the case and to the top panel design.  I think it looks much better now.  Your millage may vary however.


Tomorrow I hope to complete the drawer construction and have them glued up and pegged.  Sometime this week I hope to clean them up and fit them to the openings.  Then add decorative elements.  Next weekend should see the beginning of the finishing process.

Greg Merritt…Part 6

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5 Responses to Hillbilly Mini Tansu-Progress 5

  1. bloksav says:

    Again you have made a striking good cabinet (or Tansu).
    Do you intend to hang it on a wall, or should it stand on top of a dresser or something similar?

  2. BrianJ says:

    Ooooooohhhhhhh ( in your best Yosemite Sam…) …. I hate that rabbet….get it??? Hahaha… Okay now that Ive got that off my chest… Been dyin to use it all day and since only folks with wood working issues like me would get it… You are the proud recipient. You’re welcome. Anyway…. That is some serious detail work, I’m glad it appears you are having fun with it. How have you found your accuracy at meeting points, etc?

    • gman3555 says:


      Getting everything to line up can be a bit of a challenge at times. I find the best way is to lay everything out with a pencil first. Then make slight micro adjustment to angles ect. as needed to make everything come together. There definitely is a fudge factor when this many lines and angles have to come together. 😉


  3. Pingback: Hillbilly Mini Tansu-Progress 4 | GREG MERRITT – BY MY OWN HANDS

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