Furniture Craftsmanship
written & published by Doug Stahnke at ePlanSets.com 03-17-2008


The key element in doing elegant work, with Plastic Pipe & Pipe Fittings, is craftsmanship. As with any Furniture Building or WoodWorking project, work methodically and tend to the details on each and every step aong the way. Making things from Plastic Pipe can lead to creations of absolute beauty. Our purpose here is to provide some enlightenment, but also, we like to have fun with our projects.

Easier than WoodWorking

For example, making a project like our Platform Four Poster Bed out of wood would be more difficult than making it out of Plastic Pipe. Making a Bed with this much detail out of wood, would require cutting each piece to width, height and length. But with the Plastic Pipe Platform Four Poster Bed, you only have to cut the pieces of Pipe to the required lengths. The wood project requires making special joints. Most Plastic Pipe projects do not require making any special joints, however the wood project does require making many special joints. Our Platfrom Four Poster Bed does require some specially fabricated joints for the spindles in the headboard and the footboard, however, all other joints on the project are basic plastic pipe joints. Most Plastic Pipe Project joints are assembled with the use of a rubber mallet. The alignment of all the pieces is very important to a the showing of your good craftsmanship in your finished project.

Long Tee Fitting

The Natural Flowing Beauty

Plastic Pipe fittings have a natural flowing beauty. There are just the natural, visual, gravitationally flowing lines in these furniture designs. The way the socket bells of each fitting are expanded to fit around the Pipe adds to the character of these natural flowing lines.

 

Fitting Prep & Clean Up

 

Plastic Pipe Fittings have some inherent distractions to this natural, flowing beauty. But those can easily be corrected by the craftsman. Plastic Pipe fittings are made of injection molded Plastic. From each fitting, the craftsman needs to remove all the stubs from the sprues, spurs, gates, risers, flues and flashing. Mold parting lines knockout bosses, manufacturer’s logos, should be sanded or filed smooth and flush to the contour of the fitting. Stick-on labels need to be removed. Use a solvent to remove the glue from the labels. If you don’t, it will mess up your finish later.


Rounding Over the Ends of Fitting BellsRoundover Sharp Corners

Rounding over the ends of the socket bells on each pipe fitting is another way the craftsman can do to add elegance to a project. This is easy to do with a small wood router with roundover bit. The roundover bit should have a pilot bearing and be of the correct size for the socket bell wall thickness.

Platfrom Bed Plans - Roundovers
Fitting Type
Bit Cut Radius
Fitting Diameter
PVC or ABS
(White or Black Color)
3" or More
1/4"
3/4" - 2"
1/8"
PVC
(White Color)

1/2"

1/16"

CPVC
(Beige Color)

1/2" - 1"

For this kind of work a small wood router does a fine job. Gently hold the router, bit side up, in a clamping or holding device like a vise, then feed the fitting into the cutter. Do not tighten you clamping device too hard, you may damage your router. A router table may be too large and restricting. Care must be taken not to get your fingers too close to the cutting blade. You should wear a dust face mask over your nose and mouth, safety goggles, plus ear plugs.

The elegant example of our Platform Four Poster Bed in the image above shows how the rounded over fitting bells gently soften the look of the footboard.


More Articles:

Stunning Faux Marble Details - written & published by Doug Stahnke at ePlanSets.com 04-04-2008

The Elegance of the Art - written & published by Doug Stahnke at ePlanSets.com 01-04-2008


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