Mechanical Cellarette — Final Details

I’ve used this before in my writing but it’s worth repeating!  Many years ago Diane and I were having a discussion about her paintings and she told me that: “I work until I get to a problem area, solve that, and then continue on to the next problem”.  That may not be the exact quote but her concept has always stuck with me.  Woodworking projects, whether it’s a complex furniture project such as the Mechanical Cellarette or a simple mitered box are much the same.  Come to think of it;  life in general is like that too!

Here are some of the final problems and solutions for this project.  First of all, now that the casework is done it was time to install the mechanics.  Not being 100% certain of the interior space needed for the Auton 1001 Lift I allowed extra.  The overall proportions of the cabinet were taken into consideration as well.  The unit sits in a 3/4″ Maple plywood box.  It is supported by 4, Poplar “beams” that span the bottom of the case.  These were sized to bring the unit level with the case top.  This brief slide shows the installation:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Squaring top to lift

Squaring top to lift

Now that the Auton is in position the next step is centering the top over it.  It’s customary to center a cabinet top to the cabinet sides but in this instance it needed to be centered over the lift.  Oversized holes were drilled in the corner blocks installed earlier and the top was then attached with brackets to the housing for the lift.  The process was similar to squaring a tablesaw top to the blade — the corner screws were left snug and then the top was adjusted to fit square to the opening.  Just like squaring the tablesaw top, a mallet was used to accomplish that.

Side Clearance

Side Clearance


Now the unit needs to be positioned and centered.  Here’s a concern now that the box is at Davis Glass and Mirror.  There was more play in the mechanism than I expected and in my perfectionism quest I may not have allowed enough space for the mirror on the sides of the box.  I used spacers of 3/16″+ on either side to mimic the mirror thickness — won’t know until I get the box back from them at the end of next week!

The last step before taking it to have the mirror installed is fitting the top — another potential problem that took some head scratching to solve.  Essentially, once the location was established it’s a matter of drilling holes accurately.  The top is attached with dowels as a safety feature.  If there is an obstruction between the cellarette and the top as it is going to the stored position, the dowels will allow the top to separate from the bottom.  Small, 1/16″ holes were drilled through the top into the bottom and then 1/4″ holes were drilled on the drill press for the dowels, here’s that process:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

That leaves me with a waiting game.  Now that the box is at the glass shop I can’t go any further until that is ready.   They estimated that will be at the end of next week.  I’ll be worrying about the clearance but since no good ever comes from worry I’ll try to contain myself!  In the meantime I can apply the final coat of Danish oil to the entire project so it’ll fully cure.  The last thing will be having the tile cut, polished, and installed.  Hopefully I can schedule that quickly.  When that’s complete all that remains is the final coat of wax and delivery.  Seems like this has been a lengthy process but we knew that going in.

About woodworksbyjohn

I'm a retired woodshop teacher. I build one of a kind furniture pieces and custom picture frames. You can see some of my currently available work, boxes, carvings through my Etsy store: Contact me about your project -- always up for the challenge of unique work.
This entry was posted in Mechanical Cellarette and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s