Shop Log

Fitting Drawers

In our casegoods, the drawers are fit to the openings formed by the frame of the case. They slide in and out, wood to wood. Fit is critical: too tight and the drawers will swell and stick in times and places of high humidity, too loose and they are sloppy. But fit is not absolute and unchanging — the dimension of wood varies with its moisture content. The moisture content of the wood at the time of assembly and fitting can be measured. The equilibrium moisture content of the wood in the case at its place, and places, of residence cannot be known — but can be assumed to be in a range of 6-14%. (Think mountains of Nevada-southern Florida.)

By measuring the dimension (depth of drawer, for example) and the moisture content of the wood at assembly, we can calculate the depth of the drawer at a moisture content of 14%, and fit it accordingly. It is far worse to have a stuck drawer than a loose one.

Aaron is fitting a drawer of a walnut buffet.

Aaron fitting drawer wp
fitting drawer, close up

We have built the table of our stroke sander so we can sand drawer sides — smoothing, dimensioning and aligning.

Aaron stroke sanding a drawer side to fit
stroke sanding drawer side, close up