After putting together the first of the four bi-fold doors, I decided I needed to rethink my strategy. Using a finish saw, square and doing everything I could to make my cuts precision, turned out to be less than desirable.
Not only is it hard to cut equal lengths of board to create slats with a hand saw, but I used pine which has both hard and soft elements, making a drilling nightmare for the dowel holes.
The door looks pretty wonky. I decided that a chop saw would increase my efficiency in the equal length cutting arena, which is has. I went to Lowe’s today at exactly the right time. I found a helpful employee who discussed the attributes of the various miter saws with me – apparently they aren’t called chop saws. I picked out a saw that was on sale, and the last one they had in stock. After the employee loaded my cart with the saw, a man came up asking for the exact same model. I heard the employee telling him I had the last one. I’m guessing the man got a rain check?
I brought the saw home and set it up in my car port on a portable workbench. It worked like a dream; especially once I figured out I could put a mark on the saw table to show where to place the wood for the perfect cut, versus marking the wood over and over again. My pieces are now uniform.
I have no idea how to improve the drilling aspect of this project. I have done my best to rig a jig for holding the slats, but when the bit hits a hard part of the wood, it slides over to the soft part of the wood, making the holes off-center. Some of the slats are drilling out fine, others not so much. After cutting one hundred slats, I’m thinking I might need to opt for different wood for the slats?
I’ll keep you posted. Who knew this learning curve could be so time-consuming and expensive?