Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Palm Harbor, Florida
Salvaged Pine dresser construction
I am building a dresser out of reclaimed pine barnwood. It is only the second dresser I have built, but the first made without man-made material. I am torn on how to join the horizontal interior members to the dresser sides, accounting for expansion. The barnwood will be used for the top and sides, and I will use knotty pine as secondary wood for the sub-top and all inside structure. The problem is that the barnwood was likely not dried, but the secondary wood is store-bought and was probably kiln dried. It would be simplest to build panels for the subtop, bottom, and drawer supports out of the secondary wood and glue them into dadoes in the sides of the dresser. I have seen video examples of knowledgeable people doing this, but while this would result in the grain running the same direction, and expansion occuring front to back, I am not sure that the two different pines will expand at the same rate. I have considered the alternative of making frames for the horizontal drawer supports. I would use mortise and tenon joinery for this construction, and glue in 2 1/8" horizontal dividers in the front and back using sliding dovetails to hold the frames. The drawer supports would float freely in the dadoes so as not to restrict the side panels. The problem is this is a much longer process. I know one other option would be to attach the bottom and drawer support panels using long tapered sliding dovetails, but I am not sure I am up to trying long tapered sliding dovetail joints for drawer supports. I understand how to do it, but I have never attempted it. If it is the only valid option, I will give it a shot. Which method is the most appropriate?
Thaks for your help.