If you have been following along with this build then awesome, thank you. If you have missed out or are coming in on the tail end of things here you can catch up with the rest of the build by clicking on the link HERE.
I started this day by doing the main assembly for the chest,I started by installing the side pieces first. because of the tongue and groove joint of the front panel into the legs, this was forced to be a butt joint. It would be reinforced by a 3 pairs of 3/8" pins but I still made some changes to the original design, The article on medieval chests that I took a lot of instruction from suggested the grain of the side panels should run horizontal, matching the front panel, but as I thought about that and this butt joint I also started to think about wood movement over time and how if I were to run the side panels with the same grain orientation as the legs I wouldn't have any movement issues fighting each other or the joint. (If you haven't, you can check out that article from greydragon.org HERE)
I added some glue to the sides and the legs and positioned the panel. I held pressure with an F Clamp while I predrilled and placed four 6 penny finishing nails, near the top and bottom in the front and back. I gave all these nails a slight angle to add mechanical strength and I countersunk them all below the surface with a nail set. Using these nails gave me the chance to continue working with the piece clamp free while the glue set up.
Glue was used along the matching grain to the front and back panels, not along the cross grain to the sides.
All the nail holes were later filled with homemade wood putty mixing glue and sawdust from the oak.
With all the pins set on one side I wipe up as much of the squeeze out as possible and cut the pins flush with a flexible flush trimming hand saw. Then I repeat the process on the sides in and the back. Over all on the front and back there are three pins from each side going through into the bottom panel and two into the side panels. From each side there are an additional two pins going through into the bottom panel.
With the panel set and smoothed I turned the body of the chest back over on top of it and lined it up with the back edge and scribed a line around it to set the orientation of the lid. Through all my measurements and work I felt I had the chest square, heck my trisquare confirmed it, but wood is a tricky bastard that way sometimes and I've had it fool me before. I never take that "square" for granted anymore. The slight variations will destroy you over time. If it looks right then it is right and so I measure my lids for my chest using the chest itself and skipping the tape measure all together. Since I've started to do that, my error rate has dropped to zero. That's a good thing.
After I had the outside edges of the chest scribed down I took a dividers and set it to 5/8" wide and scribed a second outter line that would give space for the lip around the chest.
This pic is actually of me lining up the hinges on the front panel after I had bent the hinges to what I needed. I have to say I really am a big fan of these strap hinges from Lee Valley, I think they look awesome in these applications.
I ripped off a couple small strips on the table saw, 3/8" by 5'8" and I used a small finger plane and spokeshave to chamfer an angle on them. I mitered the corners and fit them into the bottom. I used some CA glue to secure them in place. I have to admit I am pretty new to the CA glue concept in woodworking, I've used super glue for lots of other things, but for this application it was perfect. An impossible place to fit a clamp and super difficult to drive a brad. Those things only end in tears and swearing (I've been there) that CA glue almost made it too easy.