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Murphy Bed Build (5): Cherry Inlay on the Face

May 16, 2018

A strip of hardwood hides the joint and customizes the look

This video is part of a series on Making a Murphy bed. the series landing page is here.

Official Transcript:

So that was the last piece of two by two running around the perimeter of the box. I've got all my ribs in place. So what I need to do now is set this aside and bring my glued up bottom piece back in here, un-clamp it, put the inlay piece in, and then we'll be ready to attach this to that bottom.

Here's the piece that we glued up earlier. Now I'm going to make a three-quarter inch wide dado in this, to accept the piece of Cherry inlay like this. This is exactly three-quarters of an inch wide. So using a three-quarter of an inch router bit. It should fit right in there. And I'm set probably somewhere between three-sixteenths and strong eighth thick.

Router cutting tip:

I made this straight edge guide so that I don't have to worry about the cut, the way it works, the edge of the router rides against this edge, the guide edge. But this edge right here shows me exactly where the cut's going to be. That's because I actually made this oversized first, and then ran the router down the length of it. That gives me exactly the cut that the router is going to make. I can just put the edge right against here and take off, but there's one other thing that I kinda have to worry about.

If my router rocks any, during the process, I'm not going to have a straight line to lay my veneering, I actually will have a mess. So I'm going to take this piece of material, which is the same thickness material, that my jigs made out of, and I'm just going to lay it down here. So that gives me something for both sides of my router base to rest on. Now as long as I keep the edge of my router against the fence. I should just get a perfect cut.

Cutting the cross dadoes is the same process

So that gives me the long vertical piece. I'm going to lay out a couple of cross ribbons, they're just for style. And just looking at this, I am going to say, I want to be right there, which is about 16 inches up from the bottom.

So this is going to be the same process. I just measured up 16 and three quarters to the edge, since I want my inlay piece to start 16 inches from the bottom. I've got my extra piece in place so that my router can't tilt and now I'm just going to make a pass right across here.

That made a great cut. Now I am going to do, is move down to the other end, come up 16 and make the exact same cut. Then we'll be ready to add our inlay pieces.

With the whole grid cut, the next thing I need to do is vacuum a whole bunch of this sawdust off of here. And I'm going to just lightly sand it and I'll be ready to take some measurements and put my inlay pieces in.

Applying the inlay strips

So when I made this veneer, I spent quite a bit of time making sure I had exactly the right width where it was going to go right down in that three quarter inch groove. And I also did a test cut in a scrap piece of plywood, so that I could make sure I had that depth, really, really close.

I am going to put just a little bit of glue behind this piece of inlay. Now, it's a very, very tight fit. So there's not really any place for the glue to squeeze out. So I need to be careful not to put too much glue in, and then I am going to use some five-eighths headless pins, to hold it in place.

I won't do any sanding right now 'cause we're going to be flipping this around and handling it some more. So I am going to wait until we've got the whole thing in place. And then I'll come back and sand it. But for right now I am going to put a little bit of glue behind it and nail it in with some headless pins.

That is not going to take very much sanding at all.

Well, that piece went in just fantastic. I'm going to test fit my other pieces, get them exactly the way I want, and then we'll glue and nail them in too.

—A recovering production trim carpenter, Gary Streigler is a partner in Craftsman Builders in Northwest Arkansas.

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