Stephen's Step Stool: Part II

I made Stephen’s Step Stool from Douglas Fir. Our big box stores do not carry the fabled Southern Yellow Pine, so I settled on our local (not-so)equivalent.

I laid out the parts between the knots on the boards and cut them using my jig saw. Because the 2”x12”s were 10’ long, I cut them on the floor using scraps of wood to hold them up and provide blade clearance.

The 2” x 12” we used was wider than my 8” jointer so I flattened the faces with the planer alone. Once each piece was cut to length there was minimal bowing. The pieces were first fed through my planer with their concave side down. They were then continually passed through the planer, alternating faces between passes, until the board where reduced from 1½” to 1” thick.

Stephen proved a great help during the milling as he was able to keep an eye on the ClearVue cyclone attached to my shop vac and let me know when it began to clog. Planing ½” of thickness off of 11½” wide boards made about 45 gallons of chips.

After thicknessing the boards I finished milling them by flattening one edge on the jointer and then cutting to width on my table saw. Once milled and dimensioned we stickered them and called it a night.

Dry fitting before joinery.

The following day I cut the dovetails using my Keller 2200 Journeyman Dovetail Jig. Some of the boards had cupped slightly, but I was able to clamp them up tightly and the dovetails cut reasonably well.

Milling the pins.

Then I glued the front and rear sections of each side together using Nexabond glue. Since using it in my clamp rack I’ve been impressed with Nexabond’s performance. Hopefully +Christopher Adkins will mail me my WIA Nexabond soon.


While the glue on the sides dried, the remaining pieces spent the night re-stickered.


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