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Fred Voorhees

Brianna's bed Pt.1

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I was approached by my Brother and his wife about building a platform bed for their daughter (my godchild). I was then in the middle of another furniture project, a sideboard for our son and his fiancé. However, I am always up for another project and especially one that I had never done before and also one that had a few new challenges built into it.

I told them to find a picture of a style bed that they liked and present it to me. They did and it presented a few new things. I would get started on it soon after the sideboard was done. First, being a platform bed, I immediately knew that I would want to incorporate lots of hardwood veneer plywood in it since it would be quick and sturdy. But, because there would be lots of plywood involved, that would also mean that there would be plenty of edges that would need to be laminated with the real thing. I had done this before, but that area within itself germane to this project had a few different options that would need to be dealt with. Also, the use of patterns/templates would be needed for a few things. These, too, I have also worked with in the past, but I looked forward to visiting that area of woodworking again to further my experience with them.

Overall, the project wasn’t a difficult one. Once I had the measurements of the full size mattress that they wanted to use, I laid out my drawings and worked from there. As it turns out, being that the bed was going to be a full size instead of a twin, it required the purchase of an extra sheet or two of plywood. For the love of just a few inches, but what are you going to do? With that being said, let’s get to the pictures.

Using my drawings and measurements as a guide, I cut out the oak plywood sides and internal structural pieces of plywood and laid out for the dados and rabbets that would go hand in hand with putting the base all together.

Using my handheld router with a 3/8” straight cutting bit, I routed out all of the dados and rabbets with the help of a clamping straightedge.

Once they were cut into all pieces, the dadoes, which were “stopped dados”, were chiseled to square up the ends to match the profile of the pieces that would be inserted into them.

Once that was all done, it was smart to do a quick dry fit to make sure everything fit together well and met the measurements that were needed. No, that’s not snow in my shop – it’s dust in the air. The camera’s flash really magnifies the particles in the air.