The Flip-Top Cart – part two

(Part One can be seen here)

Now that the weather has stabilized and I made the necessary fixes to my table saw, I was ready to make some progress on this project. I had said previously that my glue-ups weren’t perfectly aligned, so the first order of business was to make clean edges on all the sides. I did that at the table saw, taking care to only take just enough of a cut to get a clean, even surface across both pieces of the ply on each side. I did this to both side panels and both shelf supports. If my measurements were correct I got away with only taking away about 1/4″ from any given width, so I should still be on track for the top to fit.

The next thing to tackle was the top. When I bought the hardware to fix my saw top I picked up a steel rod. Well, I attempted to. HD didn’t carry solid 3/4″ rod (again, surprise), so I was left trying to figure out what to do. I didn’t want to use the hollow rod for fear the walls would fail with the weight. Luckily, the 5/8″ threaded rod is nearly the perfect outside diameter for the inside diameter of the hollow pipe. Job done.

With the middle of my top marked, I aligned the router (using the bushing rod) and the rip fence so that I would get a cut right down the middle. I set up my 3/4″ core box bit to 3/8″ height using my awesome new Kreg setup bars.

wpid-IMAG0152.jpg

wpid-IMAG0153.jpg

For some reason the channel didn’t line up directly in the middle, so I will have a bit of trimming to do once it is all glued up. But it basically worked and it was time to glue up both sides after the opposing piece got its run through the router. I did slightly adjust the bit higher to make sure I would get a good glue bond. I waxed the channel to help prevent glue from squeezing out and sticking in the channel, and I thoroughly waxed the rod as well. I used the rod to help me align the channels perfectly. A copious amount of glue is attempting to bond everything together, and eight parallel clamps and the planer are trying to laminate it well. Hopefully it turns out better than one of my shelves, which has a gap at one corner. I think that one will go on the very bottom and the weight of the unit on the caster will help correct it over time. That, and the carriage bolts that will attach the casters.

Tomorrow I will mark the shelf locations on the side panels and make the dados to accept them. I will also mark and rout out the holes for the bushings on the side panels. If everything goes well, I might have a mockup of the final assembly. I will be adding hardwood to cover all the exposed plywood as well, and I think I have enough soft maple on hand to do so. It would be nice to be done with it completely tomorrow, but I doubt that will happen. I’m thinking Monday or Tuesday at the earliest.

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