With some of the design considerations established now we can start finalizing the part selection and milling up all the rough stock.
For the second rail, I decided to go with the matching small slab as the first rail. This one gets a little narrow on the back but since it will be facing the inside, the rails should look to be approximately the same width. I’m also going to incorporate the limb coming off the crotch. I’ll butt that up against the posts and it should almost look like a brace. The crotch figure in the rails will tie in nicely to the crotch figure in the headboard.
The rails slabs are cut to rough length and a straight edge is ripped on what will be the top edge of the rail. The bottom edge will be left with it’s live edge.
Next is the walnut slabs for the head and foot board. I’ll be using a pair of boards so I can have book matched panels for each and I’ve decided to go with a live edge for the top of each panel. I lay out their lengths and draw a straight edge to follow. The boards are crosscut to length and a straight edge is ripped on the bandsaw.
These boards are wider than my jointer, so to flatten them, I make a pass to create a wide but shallow rabbit which will become the reference surface for the next step.
I have a riser board for the planer that creates a shelf for the rabbet to run along. This allows the planer to flatten the opposite face while still referencing from the partially jointed face.
Once the top is cleaned up, the board can be flipped and the extra material that wasn’t cut by the jointer can be removed.
The boards will now rest for a few days. This will give them time to move and distort slightly back to how they were before milling. In this time, I’ll fill any defects with epoxy. I’ll be milling all this stock again and when I do, the milling process will clean up the epoxy.
Next I can work on the posts. These will be glued up out of 2 pieces of 12/4 silver maple. The boards are sequential and I’m going to try my best to glue them back together so the glue seam is as seamless as possible.
I’ll rip the slabs in two and use the one with the crack as the guide for cutting the second one.
To minimize the amount of material removed from the face, I skipped the jointer and opted to just plane the faces. This left the distortion in the boards but only removed enough material to clean up the saw marks. The more material that is removed from between the boards, the more obvious the seam will be since the grain lines traveling across the seam will be even more interrupted.
I had to use almost all of my parallel clamps to force these together so I could only glue up one at a time and since I wanted to keep them clamped up as long as possible, I could only glue up one per day.
When the glue is dry the posts can be milled into square. A face and edge are flattened and squared at the jointer, a face is cleaned up with the planer, and the bark edge is ripped away with the bandsaw.
Around a week later, everything has rested for long enough and everything can be milled flat and true again.
And here is the final stock; ready to be turned into a bed.
Next time we will start on the joinery that will make up the head and foot boards.
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