Massachusetts Block-Front Chest


Step 34 This line will be the cut line for the start of shaping the Front Feet. Set the saw so that the blade is the correct height and the fence is set to make a cut in the waste portion of the Foot. Make the cut into the face of both Feet.


Step 35 Move to the band saw, set up a straight edge fence, and make the second cut that will remove the waste area.


Step 36 Next, attach the foot to a second piece as shown and cut the rounded portion of each foot.


Step 37 Cut the 45 degree cuts to the Front and Side Feet using the end of the Front Feet as a starting point for the angle. (See Chest on Chest Steps #30 – 32).


Step 38 The rear Side Feet and the Rear Feet are treated differently. The rear Side Feet are cut square at the ends. While the Side Feet are attached to the case Bottom Side Moldings, the Rear Feet need to be notched to fit over the Bottom Spacers and attach firmly to the Case Bottom. The joint between the two is a simple groove that is 3/4” thick.


Step 39 The Side Moldings are profiled like the Sculpted Bottom and the Bottom Side Moldings are profiled as is the Bottom Molding at the Case front. Fit these pieces individually to match the appropriate moldings, then join the two with glue and brads.


Step 40 Once joined, run a small cut at the table saw down the first 5” or so and attach them to the Case with glue and brads. The saw cut will act as a reservoir to keep any glue from squeezing out onto the Sides.


Step 41 Now you are ready to attach the assembled feet to the case. Apply glue to the top edge of the feet, position to the case, and apply a few strategically placed clamps until dry. Repeat these steps for all four of the assembled feet.


Step 42 While the feet are drying make the blocking for the feet. Cut the stock into 1-1/2” x 1-1/2” pieces and glue them as shown. The idea is to rotate every other piece to change the grain direction. This stabilizes the blocks for climatic changes. I like hot hide glue for this process.


Step 43 Cut the Blocking to size, then attach with glue and brads.

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About Glen D. Huey

Glen Huey is editor of American Woodworker Magazine, and former managing editor of Popular Woodworking Magazine. He's an accomplished period furniture maker and author of numerous woodworking books and videos (as well as magazine articles).