Adjustable Drawer-Planing Perch

To plane a drawer side, you typically need to hang it on a support board that’s cantilevered off the edge of your bench. The problem is that the work can shift around on a board whose width doesn’t exactly match the inside dimension of the drawer box, and clamps can get in the way of planing.

Instead of a single board, I use sticks because they can be wedged to apply pressure against the sides of any sized drawer to secure it without clamps. To create the setup, extend three stout sticks across your bench as shown, with one of them resting against a projecting bench dog. With the drawer hanging on the cantilevered ends of the sticks, clamp their opposite ends to the bench, and then wedge a couple of cross sticks between them to create pressure against the sides of the box. (Note that the center cantilevered stick supplies support for full-length planing of the drawer side. If you’re just cleaning up the joints at the corners, you can omit it.) When planing, work in the direction of the bench dog.

—Philip Houck, Boston, Massachusetts

Back to blog Back to issue