Any words of wisdom in making the classic pyramid shaped square
plug. a la Green & Green furniture. A recent article in FW showed
th author with a chisel bevel down and apparently levering against
the plug to establish each ramp. Is that the best way??
Please keep 'Use a chisel, doofus' comments to a minimum...
Use a chisel, doofus. Use it bevel down and lever against the plug to
establish each ramp. <G D & R>
(Well, somebody had to say it eventually. Might as well be me. I don't
know a Green and Green from a sack of wet doorknobs though, and have no
idea what you're talking about.)
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < email@example.com>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
Brian, the names are "Greene & Greene", FYI. Traditionally, they are
hand-carved as the author stated. A ScarySharp(tm) chisel edge is the
key to doing it quickly, easily, and well.
Aw, yer taste is all in yer mouth, Silvie.
are some examples of architects Charles Sumner Greene and
Henry Mather Greene's magnificent style.
"Given the low level of competence among politicians,
every American should become a Libertarian."
On 29 Oct 2004 18:32:44 -0700, brian_j firstname.lastname@example.org (brian roth)
Yes, they're tricky. Any doofus can make them, but good looking ones
need care - and symmetry.
Practice ! Practice until they're good. Then don't use them either.
Mount a few up in sample holes and stare at them. The go practice some
more, once you've realised they weren't as good as you first thought.
This is just the sort of job that looks worse the longer you look at
them and you get fussier.
There are two approaches to how to make them; make a pyramid peg and
insert it, or insert a rough peg and cut the pyramid in situ. This is
somewhat up to personal choice, a little owing to the type of timber,
but mainly controlled by size. You can cut the little ones
afterwards, but this is impractical for big ones.
You can (an old FWW note) make a pyramid-plug carving chisel. This is
a cut down chisel that's very short and very skewed, with a short ball
handle to it. It's also useful to round the top edge of the bevel,
like a big mortice chisel. You use this in the way you describe, but
because it's so skewed you can also use it for a side that's alongside
a long leg or rail.
For small pegs, I either cut them before or in-place. Anything over
1/4" though I do beforehand. I've made them from 1/8" on a side up to
1". 3/16" is the smallest I do now though, as the smaller ones tended
to get "lost" and just looked like round pegs.
I make small pegs from African blackwood or bog oak. I'm moving away
from the blackwood, because I want to use local timbers wherever
possible. Both are quite hard and brittle, also dark coloured. Over
1/4" I use oak. This is ebonised, fumed or natural - usually fumed.
End grain tends to finish a little darker anyway, so for Craftsman
style work that's enough. Greene and Greene gets bog oak, or ebonised
oak in larger sizes.
Small pegs up to about 3/8" are made by ripping down square stock. I
then crosscut to length, then form the pyramid (if I'm doing it that
way) and finally round the other end. The small blackwood pegs are
made pyramidal with a low-angle block plane and an angled shooting
block. The tiny ones are sanded. Larger pegs are bandsawn on a sliding
jig, then planed gently just for a better finish. This jig is
length-critical, because I guide from the round end, not the pyramid.
This avoids the need to make two jigs, for first and second sides, but
it also means that I need a new jig for new lengths (actually just a
new guide rail on the existing base). Forming an even pyramid is
always easier by making a symmetrical wedge, then forming the
intervening faces. Finally I round the starting end with a desk
pencil sharpener, the sort with a pair of rotating milling cutters.
Larger pegs are shaved roughly to size with a drawknife and shave
horse, the tops are possibly bandsawn roughly, but they still have
their tops finished with the block plane and shooting block.
When driving them in, I prefer to use a light hammer for the smaller
pegs. This gives more "feel" if you're driving them into a blind hole.
It does tend to distort the pyramid though, although the 5 face
"rosehead" can be attractive too, if done evenly.
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