Columns are trimmed and all the pieces are milled so it is time to start assembling everything.
The most accurate way that I have found to attach the caps and bases to the column, is to place the flat side of the column onto a block that raises the column to the center of the plate I am attaching. The thickness of the block is determined by subtracting the width of the column from the width of the plate, then dividing that number by two.
I then set my combination square to that same dimension and use it to locate the plate front to back. Once I verify that everything is correct, I apply glue to the end of the column.
Then I line everything back up and attach the plate with some 2″ brads. This will hold the plate firmly in place while the glue dries.
I start with the smallest plate, the top plate then change the support block to accommodate the next size plate, the base cap.
While the column is laying there, I use painter’s tape to mask off the groove that the shelf will sit in. This should prevent glue from squeezing out, onto the wood that is to be stained.
This glue-up will be a little complicated, and take a while to get everything lined up perfectly. I decided to try a different glue that will extend my working time from the normal 10 minutes to 45 minutes before the glue sets. Hopefully that will be enough time.
I start by painting some glue into the shelf grooves.
Then I carefully insert the shelf into place and clamp all four columns together to hold it while I figure out the next step.
I flipped the assembly upside down. I figured it would be easier to start by attaching the base plate to two side legs at a time. I used clamps to adjust the spacing of the legs and correct any twist. I had to release the clamps on the shelves to get enough play to align everything. I have enough time to get things lined up, then attach the clamps again later.
I applied glue to the bottom of the base caps and clamped the base plates in place.
When I was happy with the final location, I shot some 2″ brad nails down through the base to hold them.
When those were attached, I flipped the assembly back over and made sure the feet set flat and nothing rocked. I am doing this glue-up on my table saw which is the flattest surface in my shop.
Once I was happy with the alignment of everything, I applied glue to the column tops and set the top in place. I clamped it where I wanted it and shot a couple of 1-1/4″ brad nails up from below to hold it till the glue dried.
Once everything had set up, I removed all of the masking tape.
I flipped the table over to start applying stain to the bottom surfaces and any of the detail areas that are hard to reach from the top.
Both the credence table and the gift table are now ready to be finished.
I will let these dry for 24 hours, then set up the spray booth and start applying poly.