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    • CommentAuthorRiot_Nrrd
    • CommentTimeSep 10th 2009
    Hi everyone - I have a joinery question. I am making a workbench/lumber storage rack. I am basing it on a cross between two plans from Woodworkers Journal, and adding some of my own embellishments. I am basically mounting a table top onto a shoprter version of this rack:

    However, I am trying to make this look somewhat more traditional, so I am trying to avoid using lag screws and such if I can help it.

    It is going to be made from clear pine stock. The top will be connected to a "ladder" frame. The ladder frame will sit in pinned saddle joints on 8 supports made up of three boards each (e.g., the saddle will be glued up, rather than cut). Those same three members will also be glued up to form a tenon, which will fit into glued up mortises that are perpendicular to the table top.

    Make sense so far?

    Now - I want to attach a set of board parallel to the table top to whcih I am going to attach a set of retractable casters. This is going to be based on the design you see on rolling ladders at places like HD and Lowes. So I am planning on attaching them to the perpendicular supports.

    In the picture above, this is the section that the wheels are attached to - basically an apron. However, I want that apron to suppot the load (in the picture, most of the load is supported on the perpendicular pieces where the wheels are mounted). The retractable casters are going to be attached to that apron and pivot on an axle, so I need them to be fairly strong.

    My plan is to make those out of two glued up 2X6s (nominal). But I don't want to attache the 2X6s to the cross pieces with lag screws.

    So I am thinking to cut mortises (maybe 1 X 3) in the long 2X6s, and then essentiall have each cross piece be cut to serve as "double tenons." So 4 cross pieces X 2 tenons each = 8 mortise and tenon joints. I think gravity would hold them for the most part, but obviously I'll glue them up too.

    So here is the question(s):

    1.) Does this sound like ti will result in a strong frame?
    2.) These motrise and tenon joints are going to be end-to-face joints. The only points that will really work well would seem to be the tops and bottoms of the tenons (edge grain) to the tops and bottoms of the mortises (edge grain). All the other sides are going to involve end-grain to face-grain. Is this going to be a problem?
    3.) Should I considere pinning the tenons with a dowel or something similar?
    4.) Is there a better joint I should be considering?

    If this doesn't make sense, let me know, and I'll try to draw a picture.

    Riot Nrrd
    • CommentAuthorRiot_Nrrd
    • CommentTimeSep 11th 2009
    I am asking this question over as the SS forums too, so I will share my pst her ein the hope that someone here will offer suggestions too....


    Here is a scale design drawing. I only included the front and top views, becasue my primary focus has been making the retracting casters work. Basically it is a lever pinned to the bench with a steel rod, and the caster acts as a fulcrum. I'm going to lock it in place with hitch pins unless I (or someone else) can think of someting cooler.

    But my question is about the red circled areas. Right now, they just show a butt joint. But I need that to be a strong joint, because it needs to hold up the bench and any wood I have stored in it. On the right side, I've drawn what I am thinking is the best option - I'm calling that a mortise and tenon, but it may be more accurate to call it a blind tongue and dado.

    So the question is - any other ideas? I can see pinning the tenon with a dowel (shown in orange), making it a through-tenon and pinning it with a dowel, putting the dowels through the face of the base into the tenon and splining them, making it a through tenon and splining the tenons, etc...

    As you can see (hopefully?) from the top view, each side can have eight tenons. I could make them BIG tenons and do four, but I think that will weaken the base more than I want. Or I could make them small tenons and do four, but I think that would weaken the crosspieces more than I want.

    Any thoughts?
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