Wood Beam to Modern Outdoor Sofa | DIY Woodworking



I'm Brad Rodriguez from Fix This Build
That and today we're building a modern sofa beams but that means I got to do a lot
of milling so let's get going and these suckers are massive it felt like an
imperial star destroyer cruising through my planer but after I had the faces
smooth I needed to check the moisture level of the beams if the boards are too
wet my project is gonna be warping over time I grabbed my Araya 950 pinless
moisture meter from Wagner meters and I calibrated it for cedar to take the
readings but I was reading around 12 and a half percent which is good but I
needed to check the center after I cut up the beams
I took the lumber over to my jointer to finish prepping for the Reese on the
jointer uses the flat face that I made over on the planer as a reference and it
cuts the side running across the table at a perfect 90 degrees to the face I've
always been partial to 90-degree angles and just always seem like I don't know
the right angle I guess milling wood from rough lumber is no easy chore but a
bandsaw sure makes it a lot easier to get what you want I set up the saw to
cut a little over one and a half inch segments so that the boards will have a
finished thickness right at one and a half inches which is the same as a 2×4
and when you're cutting these long boards make sure to use outfeed support
too but as much as I love my bandsaw make sure you're wearing some hearing
protection when you do any riesling when you hear the most annoying sound in the
world I'm not sure if there's any more
annoying sounds than that of a good reason let me know in the comments if
I'm missing one but of course it is totally worth the sound and after all
the cutting it gave me 13 boards to work with all right I got these boards all
resaw down into smaller one by fours but one thing I do want to check is that the
outside is the same as the inside as far as moisture and dryness the Orion 950
has a temperature and humidity sensor that calculates the equilibrium moisture
content or EMC for the space it's basically the percentage where
lumber stops losing moisture and my shop EMC was at 11.6 percent it's really the
game-changing feature on this meter and it's got a great seven year warranty
also and now i could check the center of those beams against this number so this
one is round eleven and a half twelve and a half and this is on the
outside and the inside board is like thirteen twelve and a half twelve point
six so that's good that means that i could go ahead and move forward and mill
this lumber and it's not going to move around a lot because it's close to my
equilibrium if you want to find out more about the orion 950 i've got a link down
below in the description and thanks to wagner meters for being a sponsor of
this video now these boards still had at least one rough face from the bandsaw so
i went back to the planer to cut it smooth
I also took them down to my final thickness of one and a half inches now
from there I was in the homestretch of the milling
I made one more trip back to the joiner to fix any of those beautiful right
angles that may have gotten out of whack from the resawing and then I could
finally start trimming the boards to their wit's as I need it at the table
saw so milling your own wood does take a lot of time does take a lot of machines
but it is rewarding and save a little green while you're at it so if you ever
need some good firepower to convince your significant other why you need to
buy all these machines just show them the video up into this point and
describe all the wonderful things that you can make for him or her with these
tools good luck friends now next I started cutting down the parts for the
sofa base the sofa is a two seater loveseat and the cushions are held up on
wooden slats that are attached to the base I cut the front side and Center
parts to size using my stop block to get repeatable cuts as needed I also went
ahead and moved in the stop block and cut the lower back rails to size so I
could drill all my pocket holes at once now the base is attached with a series
of pocket holes which are all on the underside and won't be seen in the final
piece I'm using the Craig k5 to drill them all but using the HD attachment
here would be a great way to really strengthen the joints even more I'll
talk a little bit more about what I'm doing to beef up this design versus the
chair when I assemble it I clamp the sides and front down to the bench and I
attach them together with exterior-grade pocket screws now with the sides
attached I could use the back rails to position the center support I put them
flush against the sides and the center piece fit perfectly in between them
and next I started on the back of the loveseat the back has three uprights
that attach to the sides and center of the base and are connected at the top by
two top rings the top rails are one and a half inches on each side for a slimmer
look I ripped these parts from wider boards and then cut them down to size on
the miter saw and then I grabbed a few more boards for the next step I measured
in on the part to where the angle would start and I use my carpenter's square to
mark a 15 degree angle and then I went over to the miter saw and I set it to 15
degrees for the cut and now I could use the laser alignment on the miter saw or
just the blade to pull the pencil line right up to where that blade would cut
now holding the wood in place I moved the stop block in so that it
could cut all the uprights the same length I cut that third upright to size
and then I took them to the bench to continue shaping them the 15 degree cut
gave me the reclined but now I needed a flat face to connect it to the base
I used my combination square to draw a line at 90 degrees to the angle that I
had just cut here's a little visual of how it's gonna turn out when I'm done
now I extended the lines around the edges to give me a reference for the
tapering jig here as well using those layout lines setting up the cut on the
jig was really pretty easy I just put the front of the cut in the back of the
cut right on the edge of the jig and then locked it down then I could raise
up the blade and I was ready to go all right I've got the cut all set up on the
tapering jig I have a video on how to build this fancy jig as well as a
simpler one you can check that out after you're done with this video
I'm gonna also use this jig to cut a taper on the back of the leg that's just
to slim it down and make it look a little more sleek because that's what
we're going for let's cut I am really loving this new
fancy tapering jig that I made since the repeatability is a lot easier to adjust
after making one cut I loosen the hold downs and then put the next part on it
gives me the same exact shape on every piece the last thing I wanted to do is
taper the upright down to one and a half inches at the top so I could match the
top rails I just did the jig to make a full width cut at the base up to a half
width cut at the top and the back uprights really won't be seen a lot
since the cushions are gonna be covering them but they'll still be seen from the
side and I think it's a great look if you want all the dimensions cut list and
detailed instructions for this build I do have
plans available just go check the link below in the description for details I've forgotten to drill pocket holes in
the top rails earlier so I went ahead and did that now on the ends where they
meet the center upright I offset the holes on each rail similar to how I did
on the base so the screws won't collide I attach the top rails to one set of the
uprights first making sure that the offset pocket holes will on that Center
upright but the rail is tilted 15 degrees to match the slope of the back
so I used some little wedges to hold it in place and then secured it with screws
and then I added the next rail and upright and I had to use my longest
clamp here now if you've got at least one clamp over four and a half feet long
it's gonna make several these steps in the assembly a lot easier the next I
flip the assembly around and I attached the lower rails location of these aren't
as important as the top rails so definitely start with the top first so
you can establish that straight top edge along the back of the sofa all right I'm ready to assemble this and as you can see it's already up here I
did this for a drive fit when you've got something like this with so many angles
it's always a great idea to do a dry fit and because my workbench is so small I
had to get some help so I'm gonna take this apart and right I get my helper my
wife to help me out and this is gonna be awesome if you don't have a wife you
know like I can give some good dating advice but I'll leave that to you on
your own I had Susan holding the back assembly as I put glue on the base and
got everything set up and she brought it over and I added glue to it as well and
then got everything squared up on the ends with that long clamp I used some
small clamping wedges to get a squeeze on the uprights and that back angle
worked out to right about 12 degrees after clamping everything together I
secured the uprights with two and a half inch pocket screws and on a side note
here as I record this it's me and Susan's 15th wedding anniversary she's
amazing and you know you've really found a winner when your wife holds your glue
ups for you and look to genuinely excited about it
love you baby and next I grab some boards from the darker beam
unfortunately the two beams didn't match exactly but I was able to get pretty
much the entire base from the lighter one and I'll make the sides from the
dark I ripped the boards down a little smaller than the base I wanted the size
to be thinner and have a little subtle taper to them as well
now each side is pretty simple it's just two legs connected by an armrest and
unlike the base I had plenty of material for the sides so I cut the six parts to
rough light first though the legs and armrests are joined with 45-degree
minors I set up the saw for the cut and I started with the legs I marked for the
miter cut on the leg and then lined it up with the blade then I brought in the
stop block to set my repeatable cuts for the other legs as well I typically don't
use the hold down on my miter saw but what I'm doing miters I do
since the miter cut is at an angle to the fence the blade has a tendency to
pull that piece into the cut and that'll make a sloppy joint so clamping down the
parts and hold them tight together is gonna give better results in my
experience I got all four chair legs cut to size and the minor on the top but
they are a bit blocky so what I do want to do is put a taper on these as well
I'm going to go back to the table saw to do that and after that I can cut the
tops and then assemble the sides and we'll have it all ready for final
assembly I went back to my new friend the fancy tapering jig for these cuts
now seriously though I can't believe it took me this long to make this thing now
when I made the chairs I was super cooling alignment blocks to my old jig
for repeatability it's kind of like in high school when I upgraded from my
dad's 1980 Toyota Corolla with no power steering – my 1990 Mazda a Mexico of
course the mx6 had like 60,000 miles on it and the turbo blew out three months
later who's counting now with the legs done I cut the armrest
there's no tapering on these just 45 degree miter zhan each in I like to keep
my blades swung to one side to cut all the minors when you get your setup
locked in you really don't want to move it if you don't have to the miter joints
are notoriously weak with just glue and for a clean look I'm going with dhow
joinery here I matched up each miter connection I drew to the reference lines
across the joints and then I used a self centering dowel jig to register against
the mitered face and to drill the holes the jig has a positioning line on it
that you line up with your reference marks so that after you've drilled the
holes on both sides they match up perfectly and just take your time here
and when clamping it down though I found that looking at it from further away
with both eyes is better than getting close and squinting at it with one eye
shut but if all goes well it should fit together like a glove all the dowel
holes are drilled and the legs are ready to be assembled but there's one thing
that I need to do first and it's going to really help with the strength of the
joint now in Grain on a miter joint is very porous so if we put wood glue
directly on it if I could get this oh my gosh
seriously somebody could invent a better top for a wood glue bottle you'd be a
millionaire alright we're gonna hit the easy button on this maybe not so much my
gosh there we go comment down below on what workout regimen you think I should
use so that I can actually open a bottle of glue all right so if we put this
straight on to the block and wipe it in what you'll see is that it soaks in very
fast and as that does then all of that strength of the glue is getting sucked
in so it's not there on the surface there's not enough glue to hold that
joint together so the way that you can avoid that is by what they call blue
sizing and that is basically just a mixture of glue and water so I'm going
to mix some glue into this little cup of water that I have and then I'm going to
apply it to all the ends let that dry and then I can go
on top of that and it won't suck into the grain as much and it's gonna be a
much stronger joint I brush the glue sizing on to the end grain and it's
soaked right in there I started with a silicon glue brush but changed over to a
small acid brush which worked way better after a few minutes I came back with
full strength exterior wood glue on the joints once you get the glue on the
Dow's you really need to work fast here the water in the glue will swell the
dowels and makes putting them together in the holes you drilled a bit more
difficult but if you can't get them fully seated by hand don't worry about
it as you can pull the joints together with clamps now I would typically use a
web clamp for miters but with one side open that doesn't work here so I tried
to put a clamp across the top of the legs to just close up that joint
it was pretty finicky though as too much pressure pulls the joint apart at the
top so just work with it until you have a solid connection and good glue
squeeze-out now let the sides dry overnight and the
next day I came back and laid out some rounded corners on the arm rests a
bottle cap here was just the right size curve that I wanted I nipped off the
bulk of the corner with the bandsaw just to reduce sanding time then I went over
to my oscillating spindle sander and I sanded to the lines that I'd drawn not
gonna say I really enjoy using this tool it's very zen just working the curve
back and forth until you hit that line now to finish off this side assemblies I
took them over to the router table to put a round over on everything and the
round over pairs really well that tapers in the rounded corners of the armrest
when working with awkwardly shaped pieces like this it's nice to have this
big tabletop to guide the parts around now the only parts left to make or the
slats and the cleats for the seat supports I cut down some boards for the
slats and once I get those finished up I can start finishing everything before
assembly but I'm gonna take these and actually these are going to be two by
fours I'm gonna rip them in half and make one by fours I'm gonna do that on
my jet milling machines between the bandsaw and the planer and then hitting
them on the router for a rounded edge it's awesome to have your own machine so
that you can take lumber like this and turn it into whatever you want so if you
want to find out more about the jet machines that I use you can check the
links down below in the description and I'll get a big thank you to Jett for
being a long-term sponsor of my channel I cut some small parts for the cleats to
mount the slats to and then I prepped everything for finish
I added round overs to the seat assembly with a palm
since it's way too big for the router table and then I sanded everything to
220 grit I used the random orbital sander where I
could and then smooth over everything else by hand
I had foresight to drill the mounting holes on the cleats before finishing but
somehow I forgot to do the slats as well I'm all set up for finish and I've got
things everywhere in the shop there's a lot of parts to do and I didn't assemble
them because I have the cleats and the slats separate and it's just gonna be
way easier to apply finish with a brush because it's not going to be in there
and making the little nooks and crannies now the only difference is if you're
spraying then go ahead and you can attach those because you can spray into
the little corners and crevices but if you're not spraying finish first and
then you can get to assembly later now the finishing was a three-step process
I'm using total boat marine varnishes for the finish which I've had good
results with in the past it's the same stuff that I used on my chair I started
off with gleam 2.0 and gloss thinned down 50/50 with their brushing thinner
now this is just to seal the wood and get a good base coat for the next one I
applied to everything with a foam brush which worked well for me and watching
the Cesar come to life never gets old about an hour later that dried and I
came back with a full strength coat of the gleam gloss and one of the things
that I like about this product is how fast it dries and it lets me do several
coats in one day now another couple hours later I came back with a full
strength coat of their lust matte finish a couple things to note here it is very
thick so have a raking light to check for dry spots as it tends to drag and
it's very strong I highly recommend a vo C respirator when applying all these
finishes or doing it outside the finish turned out great and I'm ready to
assemble but again the bench is too small so I can't assemble it because the
legs would hang off the bench so I moved it out of the way and I put a sheet of
plywood down on the floor and now I'm gonna assemble on top of that that just
gives me a nice smooth reference surface where I know everything's gonna be
pretty much in the same plane now assembly can be a little tricky but with
the right setup it will go smoothly I marked the legs where I wanted the
bottom of the seat assembly to rest and I made some small marks there then I put
a piece of painters tape along that line on each leg I use that tape to position
a cut off from the project that spanned both legs and I clamped it in place
across both of them and then I propped up the sides of the clamps
wouldn't hit the ground and laid the base right on top of it I used a scrap
block to get the front of the base flush with that front leg and then I clamped
the base to the side where it touches the uprights Susan came over to help me
again and held the other side in place while I tilted the base onto that
temporary support if you don't have a helper you can just stand this thing up
by sliding some clamps on the bottom of the legs but it's gonna be way easier
with an extra set of hands I flushed out that side and I checked the other one
again and I made some minor adjustments to get everything in place and the whole
assembly was squeezed together with the long clamp again and I secured it with
two and a half inch pocket screws now to attach the upright to the side I'm using
two and a half inch number-10 screws here you could also use dowels if you'd
liked I put a two inch pieces of blue tape on the upright to show where the
arm rest was on the other side I made marks along the upright for three screws
keeping them far enough away from the edge to prevent any blowout and next I
pre-drilled the holes and countersunk them so the heads would be below the
surface I drove them all in while keeping the parts clamp pipe together I didn't feel great about the smaller
diameter screws on the front legs so I pulled them out and I replaced them with
those number 10 screws now they don't have a pan head though so I'd really
recommend using the Craig HD system here or finding number 10 screws with pan
heads which I'm going to be looking for the final step was to put the slats on
to support the cushions I drilled countersunk holes in the slats at the
drill press and since there were eighteen of them to drill out I set up a
fence with some little visual stops so that I could easily position each hole
as I drilled it now the cleats get attached with 1/2 inch screws to the
sides and uprights I clamped the cleats in place and then I move them until the
slats would be just flush with a seat base and then drove the screws in I
repeated the process for the uprights and I was ready for the slats small
spacers help me position the parts and I screwed them down with one of the
quarter-inch screws into the cleats now these things looking nice this could
make a pretty cool all wood loveseat as well we got these cushions from at home
and we have bought four extra ones when we made the chairs because we knew we'd
be making this part two that this little loveseat really finishes off our front
porch but it could also look awesome as indoor furniture too if you want to see
the other outdoor furniture I've built I got a plate
queued up for you right there if you want plans for this one I got them right
down below in the description I want to give me thank you to all the people
joining the Builders Club you can get

pexels photo 6567496

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