I’m not what I used to be. Desk work at the day job has made me soft and nothing proves it quicker than surfacing and thicknessing rough lumber by hand. I’m sore, but I’m got the job done.
It’s not an exciting process to write a blog post about, so here is the gist of it. I have four slabs of poplar to contend with for my trestles. I have already cut these slabs to rough length and began the process by rigging up a way to hold them on the bench. Nothing fancy. I have a center board on my bench that can be raised to create a stop and one end of the slab can butt up against the planing stop of the bench. To secure the other end of the slab, I simply screwed a block of wood to my bench. That’s one of the nice things about having a simple bench. I have no qualms about screwing or nailing stuff to it if the need arrises.
The actual process is simple. Flatten a side, square an edge to that side. To flatten a side I begin by working across the grain, then diagonally and finally with the grain.
I test for flat with my long straight edge.
Then test for any twist with winding sticks.
Then make corrections as needed and square a long edge to my freshly flattened side.
Then mark for width.
Then gauge for final thickness, trim and tackle the opposite face.
It’s a good bit of work, but a rewarding process. So over the course of several days I managed to complete all four slabs.
Next up is the layout. Then I’ll start drilling holes and fitting legs.