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Arched-Top Whiskey Cabinet

comments (5) February 27th, 2014 in blogs

Ben_Blackmar Ben Blackmar, Contributor
thumbs up 18 users recommend

Arched Top Whiskey Cabinet
The rear feet are dovetailed together, and I cut the dovetails before cutting them apart, so they would be easy to clamp in the vise.
A couple of half-blind dovetails later, I had some pretty tight fitting joinery!
The solid wood top is glued back together after it was cut apart to cut out the arch and run the moldings. This is a nice view of the mortises that connect it to the case, too.
Clamped on the base to dry, with the mortised top dry-fitted to the case to keep everything lined up.
A close-up of the crown molding. Check out that little bead molding- Its cut from end grain to allow for wood movement, and mounted in a channel to stay there a long, long time.
The case back is rabbetted for a laminated veneer back.
Up-close and personal with bracket feet: corner blocks reinforce the miter joint with horizontal-grain oriented the same as the feet, so they can safely expand and contract with the seasons.
Arched Top Whiskey Cabinet - CLICK TO ENLARGE

Arched Top Whiskey Cabinet

Photo: Ben Blackmar

As a furniture student at North Bennet Street School, my last assignment at was to build a case-piece, so I got my creative wheels turning, and this is what I came up with. I used several hefty chunks of cherry, and some nicely-aged figured cherry veneer for the inlay.


It's final purpose is pretty awesome, but truthfully I designed it as a woodworking excercise to try out some new techniques: traditional ogee bracket feet, making arched moldings, and veneering and inlay using hot hide glue were some new ones for me.

(Filling it afterward with single-malt scotch whiskey just happened to be a nice perk, too...)


The solid-cherry arched top proved to be a tough challenge, but with lots of head scratching, collaboration, and planning, it came together. I also assembled the entire thing using hide glue- I wanted to really get good at working with it.


Many thanks to my mentors at NBSS Dan Faia, Lance Patterson, and Steve Brown for the wisdom provided along the way- I couldn't have done it without you guys and your infinite knowledge of truly fine woodworking!


Now the next step is to put the finish on it- those photos will come soon. In the meantime, check it out and let me know what you think!

posted in: blogs, box, cabinet, dovetails, cherry, federal, chippendale, shelf, brass

Comments (5)

tdacon tdacon writes:
If you plan to keep your liquor in a locker,
it is wise to keep a lock upon your stock.
Or some slicker who is quicker
soon will trick you of your liquor
if you fail to keep your liquor under lock.


Posted: 5:57 pm on March 8th

woodpapi woodpapi writes: Hello Ben,
Very nice and well executed show piece!
My belief was that the bottle was empty because there is no lock on the door...!
As we wil not be with you to commission the cabinet and share its content, please do not forget to post pictures of the finished curio.
Posted: 4:12 pm on March 8th

Ben_Blackmar Ben_Blackmar writes: I'm usually a "half full" guy, but that's beside the point. Even after it's all gone, the cabinet stands steady after I'm not anymore... But seriously, folks... I've got a nice bottle on reserve and am planning a little celebration when the finish is on and it's completed. Pictures soon.
Posted: 10:46 am on March 7th

Ed_Pirnik Ed_Pirnik writes: saschafer: whether or not it's a "problem" depends upon your being a glass "half empty" or "half full" kind of guy. heh heh heh. Personally, I'd like to see a bottle of Lagavulin in this baby.
Posted: 2:36 pm on March 3rd

saschafer saschafer writes:
I see one serious problem: The bottle of scotch is empty!

Posted: 6:22 pm on February 27th

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