Monday, September 15, 2008

The Lectern Initiative, part the first

I have embarked upon a woodworking task I have never undertaken before. I'm building a lectern for my wife to use at school. I am sizing it to match the perfectly sized piece of crap she has been using, but will be adding a few extra features such as a pen and pencil holder mounted to the side and, possibly, a shelf on which she can stow a few papers or a folder.

Since this lectern will be used at school -- at a junior high school -- I have decided to build it out of birch plywood. This will make it very durable, and I won't get too pissed if some kid writes on it. If I had gone with my original plan of building it out of quartersawn oak...

Anyway, I will be building this over the next couple of months. It's a project I can revert to between other projects or when I'm waiting for glue-ups to dry, though right now I'm waiting for the first glue-up on the lectern to dry.

Here's the plan for part one of this project:
1. laminate two sheets of 3/4 birch ply together to form a 1 1/2" thick sheet
2. cut the laminated stock into eleven 1 1/2" wide strips
3. form nine of these strips into a 4 1/2" square column with notches at the top and bottom
4. form two of these strips into the crossed support for the bottom, the "legs" if you will...
5. glue these two parts together and reinforce the joint with lag screws

And then I'll get onto part two.  I'll post photos when I have some.


Jay Neale III said...

42". That's the height of the lectern she has been using, more-or-less. That's on the back of the lectern, the side she stands on, and that's measuring from the floor to the bottom edge of the writing surface.

I will build mine to a height of 41 1/2" with the bottom edge of the writing surface at the back of the lectern. I'm doing this because I'll be using 3/4 material instead of the 2/4 particle board the one at school is made with, so the writing surface will be thicker and I need to allow for that. Also, I'm going to increase slightly the angle of the writing surface, though I haven't decided what angle to use as of yet.

What I have to decide is how far the bottom of the column will be off the floor. I have to take into account the height of the "legs" and the height of the adjustable feet I plan to use to level the lectern.

Jay Neale III said...

I already laminated a pair of 2' x 4' sheets of 3/4" birch plywood together and, today, I ripped the stock down into nine 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" x 48" sections, and two 2" x 1 1/2" x 48" strips.

This is the stock I'll use to build the base, center column and upper support. The only other piece is the top, which is the only part I'm not building out of laminated stock.

Laurie said...

Hi Jay.
I think its gonna be great. Loved the inboxes.

Jay Neale III said...

I have discovered that this project is much simpler than I anticipated. The benefit to me is I can finish it in a few more days. I'm substitute teaching for Debra next Wednesday and Thursday. Maybe I can have it ready to go by then.