When we bought our house in Petaluma, we used the awesome services from http://www.redfin.com. Ernesto and Angela were really great to work with, and we wanted a way to thank them in some way that meant something special to us. Since one of the things that the new house gave us was a shop, we thought something made in the shop would be a good way to express our appreciation.
These are dramatically scaled back from our original vision, in the process we learned a couple of things:
- End-routing "lyptus" to cut the dovetails is tough. My technique improved immensely, I taped all of the cuts (which, at the very least, allowed me to find the right chip-out pieces to glue back in), and learned to cut the dovetails by making a center cut and then climb-cutting the remainder of the pins (and the tails, but there's less slop on our Leigh 24 Super dovetail jig on the tails than the pins).
- Despite the advice from the Santa Rosa Woodcraft, contact cement is not the right glue to use for veneer: It lets the veneer crawl along the wood, and therefore leads to splits and bubbles. The most promising and credible suggestions for future techniques we've heard have been for using standard Titebond glue, applying it evenly with a roller, letting it dry, and then using an iron to re-melt the glue into place. In this case we just ran out of time, so this is just birch veneer.
- This was also our first real use of our Router table, we need a better router for it, but for Charlene that took the router from "scary uncontrollable beast" to a manageable tool.