Newsletter March 2023

BAWA Meeting March 19, 2023
Combined in person & Zoom meeting


Ken Habeeb –Half Moon Bay. Was a member 10-12 years ago.

Ron Henderson – Novato. About 2 years into his woodworking journey.

David Eligator – new woodworker

Greg Spenser – has been woodworking for a long time.

Program Announcements – Paul Krenitsky

April meeting – Yeung Chan boat project

Paul Meuller – shop tour East Oakland Hills, Saturday March 25, 2023. Details on the Diablo Woodworkers website:

Possible tour in late April. Bay Maples Wild California Gardens in San Jose reached out to BAWA. They have a log milling and custom woodworking operation.

Bruce asked about the possibility of another Arborica tour to see their new long planer in operation.

Talked about possible field trip to Robert Beauchamp's The Walnut Place in Woodland (near Sacramento).

Bruce Powell will be teaching a marquetry class for 3-4 people in July in his San Francisco shop.

Treasurer's Announcements – Jon Kaplan

Anyone who hasn't paid dues yet, please do. See BAWA site for Jon's address or pay with Paypal.

Other Announcements

Stan Booker gave an update on the project for building a playhouse for the Building Futures residences in the East Bay.
After talking with Bill Henzel, the project will likely be undertaken by Habitat for Humanity in Milpitas.

Paul also spoke about reviving a "2x4 contest" and is calling for someone to take on the lead for such a contest, tentatively for taking place in June.
He made an April meeting call for bringing in old 2x4 contest entries from previous year.


Tonight's Speakers

Lloyd Worthington-Levy – Standing Desk

This is the fourth desk that Lloyd has built. He showed the immediate predecessor of the current desk and indicated that the desk was too high and when he sat at the desk, his legs bumped into the drawers.

New desk with 3D model on top

The new desk was designed using the Fusion 360 CAD program. While he didn't detail all the joinery in CAD, he did print out the legs full scale for use in making a template for routing. He also 3-D printed a 1/10 scale model of the completed desk. The curved legs of the desk were attached with Dominos and the drawers were dovetailed.

He started with 8/4 stock of African Mahogany 6-7" wide, purchased from Global Hardwoods in Campbell. It was tricky to get 5 legs from the stock (the extra leg was for machine setup and as a spare in case something went wrong). He made a ¼" MDF template for the legs (using the printout from CAD) and template routed the legs. The legs were then tapered through their thickness on the table saw. The final curve shapes of the legs were refined using a spokeshave.

The main case of the desk was made of plywood with veneer applied using a vacuum press. Lloyd had previously presented to the BAWA group how he made the 3/32" African Mahogany shop-sawn veneer using a Laguna 1412 bandsaw to cut the veneer and blue tape to secure the veneer to send it through the planer (with a segmented head). First he glued veneer strips around the outside edges, mitering the corners. Then he veneered the top. He used blue tape to join the veneer segments and glued the joints before gluing the veneer to the plywood substrate. He used a Vacuum press kit from All inside surfaces were pre-finished prior to gluing. The case was glued together with undersized plastic dowels which were replaced later with wooden ones. It was noted that Lloyd made a custom 3-D printed guide to hold the drawer divider during the glue-up.

For the drawer dovetails, Lloyd used a 7° table saw blade with a flat top. He did all the dovetails as through dovetails and then veneered the faces of the drawers. The drawer sides/back were maple with a plywood drawer bottom. The fronts were African Mahogany. He used violin pegs as drawer pulls. He used a special tapered reamer to make the mortices for the pegs.

The legs were secured with Dominos using Titebond glue. Clamping was done with screws driven through from inside the case because the legs' curved shape was difficult to clamp externally. A diagonal brace system held the bottom of the legs square during glue-up.

Finishing was done using a General Finishes water-based gloss. Lloyd applied 3 coats, wiping off extra finish after the first and second coats and sanding with 320 grit between coats. After the 3rd coat dried, he went over the whole piece with paste wax applied with steel wool.

Bruce Powell – Queen-sized Platform Bed

Bed complete and installed

Bruce Powell described the queen-sized platform bed with cross-tunnel and drawers. The bed was built for a young couple for their bedroom on the top floor of a Victorian in San Francisco. The requirements were for a platform bed with built-in storage with drawers and a long tunnel area that could store a banjo. The couple wanted the bed to be made from Claro Walnut with Chinese furniture elements.

Bruce purchased 5 slabs of Claro Walnut from Robert Beauchamp's The Walnut Place. He cut down the slabs to rough size in his San Francisco shop and had to make do without the use of full-sized machinery, breaking down the wood using a hand-held jigsaw. He then transported the pieces to his Groveland, CA shop where he had his machinery. Some additional material had to be glued onto the footboard to make it wide enough. The headboard and footboard were too wide to send through his 12" planer, so he had to cut these in half to plane to thickness and then rejoin using biscuits. The sideboards had to be rip-sawed in three to make the spaces for the drawer fronts, so the pieces could be sent through the planer individually.

Revile at foot of bed with Walnut finished

The most visible element of the bed when positioned in the bedroom is the footboard and bottom legs. Bruce used a classic Chinese horse foot design with cockbeading along the top, bottom, and sides of the footboard. The legs were made from 16/4 claro walnut stock. He drilled and chiseled mortices on the legs. He pattern routed the horse foot pattern on the leg and footboard. For the curved section of the footboard, he had to make S-shaped sections of cockbeading. To secure the curved cockbeading to the footboard, he used a combination of biscuits and dowels to act as a spline. For the straight sections of cockbeading, he was able to use a spline. Bruce didn't have long enough clamps to glue the legs to the footboard and headboard so he used an improvised frame made of 1x2's and wedges to clamp the assemblies.

For the sideboards, Bruce had a 3/32" reveal around the drawer fronts. He added grooves for ledges to support the bed and drawer platforms.

Bed components laid out

Special purpose tunnel build-in

Center support

Just add a matrise

Bruce used double sets of bed connectors to connect the sides to the footboard and headboard. Three sheets of ½" plywood were used for the bed interior parts. There is a wide center rail with 2 feet in the middle to help support the bed. There is a hole cut in the center rail for the cross-tunnel (banjo storage). There is a set of plywood sheets to support the four drawers and lower halves of the undermount drawer slides and a second set of plywood sheets on top to support the mattress. The drawer "fronts" covering the cross-tunnel openings were held in place using magnets.

The bed was delivered in pieces for transport up the narrow steps of the top of the Victorian and assembled in place in its final location.

Note that Bruce's presentation was so hot, it was interrupted midway with a fire alarm and we all had to temporarily evacuate the building.


Show and Tell

Frank Ramsay

Brass tip of bullet with lead inside

Frank showed a photograph of Walnut board with an unusual feature. The board was a 4/4 board purchased at McBeath's who also thicknessed it to 5/8". When Frank ripped a section of the board off, a segment of a lead bullet flew off and down into his SawStop table saw. He was surprised it didn't trigger the metal-detection mechanism.

Jamie Buxton

Jamie showed a 3-legged stool made from Kaya and Sapele. The legs are turned with tapered tenons mated with tapered mortices in the seat. He used a tapered reamer (as used by Windsor chair makers) to make the tapered mortices. There is a three-piece spreader halfway down the legs. The 3 way mortice and tenon joint uses a triangular plywood loose tenon for reinforcement. The spreader is connected to the legs using pocket screws whose holes were then plugged.

Mateo McCullough

Mateo made a miniature secretary, 3" tall by 2" wide 1" deep. It features working drawers both below and inside the desk (with half-blind dovetails!) and cardboard hinges on the working drop-down desk. He milled the 1/16" material from a Sapele board obtained from the scrap bin at his university's craft center. He split the board using a chisel and smoothed it using sandpaper. He then used a marking gauge to set the thickness and more chiseling and sandpaper to finish the milling. The dovetails were cut with an X-acto knife and he finished the piece with semi-gloss varnish.

Joseph Ashear

Joseph presented a stool he made about 3 years ago from Maple and Cherry.

Tom Gaston

Tom showed an easy and secure way to make the corner joints on plywood drawers. I believe this kind of joint is called a locking rabbet joint. Tom indicated that involved only two table saw setups. In the first one, a 1/8" groove is cut on the end of one piece and then a 1/8" groove is sawn on the inside face of the matching piece. Finally a short rabbet is cut on the inside face of the first piece.


Silent Auction

Max Goldstein still has a piece of Purpleheart up for sale for $20.
They were circulated on an email seeking bids. ???


Minutes by Laura Rhodes)