Mr. Jefferson’s time is at an end

In my post last week I showed some of the progress photos from the class I taught at the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking.

I left off last week with the cases pretty much together but still in need of a couple of moldings. So, the first thing we did was jump right into getting the cases ready for us to wrap the waist and shoulder moldings. The top rails of both the base and the waist had to be cut out for the door and base panel before we could proceed with the waist molding. Once that was done, the class seemed to fly through applying moldings and getting the base frames for the hoods made.

From there we began making hood sides and doing a little dovetailing on the tops. All this had to be done prior to making up the scrollboards and the hood moldings. On any clock, the hood is by far the most complex part. This clock is no exception which is why we allowed at least half of the class to construct as much of it as possible. Just the sides of the hood are fairly complex. There are molded edges, rabbets, dadoes, dovetails, mortise and tenons and molded and rabbeted windows…and that’s just what happens to the case sides.

There were obviously numerous steps to get to the point where we were ready to begin working on the scrollboards and moldings. By then end of the day Thursday things were really shaping up.

The tops got dovetailed into the case sides in record time. The class notched the case sides to accept the scrollboards. It was then time to cutout and shape the windows.

Sure we used a fair number of power tools to get the job done but there’s always room for hand work.

Once the hood case sides were complete, it was time for a test fit. I think he’s thinking “Boy I hope this goes together…”

On Friday we dove right into the scrollboards and moldings. There’s a fair amount of work in this part of the hood as well even though this is a flat top clock. The backer board has to be rabbeted and then laminated to the scrollboard. The returns have to be dovetailed into the scrollboard so that everything fits properly on the newly assembled hood case. Not an easy task for even an experienced woodworker. The class did a great job and managed to get things together in a timely fashion.

Saturday, the final day of the class, rolled around with still more to do than anyone would have liked but they were further than we expected. It was mask and door time. The doors on the hood are through mortise and tenoned with an arch cut out of the top rail. It’s pretty tricky really. After some fitting and only a bit of cussing, the doors came together right on time.

Sadly, the time began to dwindle. Cases came together, hoods got fitted, moldings were made, some were even sanded and prepped for application. In the end, it was a fantastic week with a tremendous bunch of guys. Each and every one pushed their woodworking skills to the limit and succeeded. They left with about half a day or so of work left in the clock before they could start finish. It was an amazing week. Congratulations fellas for doing such a great job on the clocks. I’m sure Mr. Jefferson would proudly display any of these clocks in his home…you know, should he still be alive and all.

To wrap up this post I need to say two things. First, if you’re in the market to take a woodworking class I highly recommend the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking (well, after you’ve taken class at that Acanthus Workshop place, of course). Lastly, the guesses were correct on the  Popular Woodworking Magazine editor’s “bucket list” bookcase. Chris, I guess you’re just too transparent man. Stay tuned, there’s more to come.

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