This week I have been making a very stylish Butlers tray with stand – which is so useful for many different situations in the home, it could be used in the lounge for a tray of tea or as a piece of furniture to put some flowers on in the hallway, it could also be used in the bathroom or nursery
Its supporting frame folds easily for minimum storage and the tray can then be used on its own if that’s how you wish to use it but together they are really nice and very useful
I’ve selected the boards I need from the wood store and have prepared all the timber in the machine shop as I have done with previous projects to get every piece planed and cut to size and I then set to work in the workshop with the marking out, cutting joints, shaping and drilling etc – you will see from the video there is actually quite a lot of work involved in this project although it looks quite simple there are a lot of different processes involved but all of them are thoroughly enjoyable when you watch the process evolving
I am tackling this project in two stages – first I am going to construct the supporting frame and then I will tackle the tray so this weeks blog is mainly about the supporting frame and next week will be the tray, stand and the finishing process
I have chosen African Black Walnut for this project as its a really good looking hardwood it has beautiful colour when finished which brings out the stunning grain to a real depth and character which is unlike a lot of timbers and its a great choice for a piece of furniture. The timber works really well, is very durable and smells so beautiful when it is machined. I selected a very special piece for the tray bottom which you will see next week…..
The design of the frame is very simple but has to be precise for it to work correctly and each piece is glued together with hidden domino dowels for real strength, the two frames are then held together at their pivoting point with the same connectors I have used before in the deckchair build – I really like to use these, they are so simple and strong
Each piece has been cut to the correct angle and length, marked out very carefully for the hole locations and domino positions, given a soft rounded edge using the router and bit and then sanded well before being assembled with my usual Titebond 3 ultimate wood glue and Bessey clamps
Once the glue had dried overnight each frame was hand sanded really well down to 320 grit so the finish is silky smooth