After much hemming and hawing, I actually got a little work done today. Two things need to be fabricated on the 8×10 – a new front bellows frame (the camera was missing this when I bought it) and an extension rail. I scoured the shop for some time today, and finally found a piece of appropriately-sized oak to make the bellows frame. It needed dimensioning, which was done solely with the thickness planer. I didn’t take note of any dimensions, though, rather fitting the piece to the space needed:
After cutting the pieces to length (5-1/2″ each) I laid them out to make sure the opening would be sufficient:
The pieces are joined with my favorite half-laps. Quick to set up with the horizontal router table, though a little dicey cutting on thin pieces:
I ended up nibbling away the waste in small bites, taking four or five passes to cut the entire joint.
The joints, cut:
And with the pieces mated. Everything looks good.
I’m a big fan of polyurethane glues for most applications where strength and permanence is paramount. I always wet the surfaces a bit, as the glue needs moisture to cure. Small joints like these only require spring clamps to hold them tight while the glue sets:
After a few hours, I’ll remove the clamps and let the frame sit overnight. Poly glue creates a foaming squeeze-out which cures hard. It’s easily removed with a sharp chisel.
Now I need to measure exactly the final draw with the extension gear racks in place, and ship the frames off to Wales for bellows fabrication.