Steve Weiss's Bed

SLEEPING IN THE WOODS
This bed is a symphony of different wood species.

SHOP OWNER: Steve Weiss
LOCATION: Richland, WA

    I made this bed of alder, with cottonwood panels, maple rails and trim, and Russian olive wedges--all from Jensenís Hardwoods in Walla Walla, WA. It's as solid as an oak tree. The side rails are joined to the posts with half-dovetails and held tight with the wedges. The idea for that detail came from Home Furniture magazine.

    If I had it to do over again, Iíd stay away from alder. It was more difficult to work than I expected, with too much instability and odd grain. Also, the footboard turned out splotchy when I finished it. I managed to avoid the splotching on the headboard by using a pore filler before finishing.

    I didn't bother to refinish the footboard because I needed a bed to sleep in right away! ((Ed's note: Typical woodworker!)) Plus, I had to close my shop for the cold winter, and I wanted to redo the bed anyway, with matching dressers and end tables--maybe in walnut or cherry. When I do, I think I'll put a gentle curve in the top rails, too. I'll also make sure my shop is set up properly to handle the long pieces of wood!

    My mistake in choosing the wood brought home one of WoodCentralís discussion topics: Use the right wood the first time, and donít base your choice on cost. Iíll be happy to hear other suggestions your visitors may have for me.

    PS  The table in the back of the photo is made of horsechestnut.

...Steve Weiss


 

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