Of all the possible woodworking projects, a coat rack adds a touch of class, nostalgia, and functional storage to a foyer or entryway. A coat rack with a storage bench adds even more functionality to the piece, and will be the ideal type of furniture to help organize the pile of gloves, scarves, hats and coats that tends to collect at the front door. There are a variety of resources to obtain a pattern for such a project, and is a great piece to start with as a beginning woodworking project. Here you will find the step-by-step process to get you started on your new bench.
Step 1 - Review the Plans
Familiarize yourself with the plans or pattern that you have selected before you start your project, or even purchased wood. Read through them so that you can make sure you have all the supplies and tools that you will need. This will help to ensure that the process is a smooth and enjoyable one. It is a good idea to have a little extra wood on hand in the event of a measuring mishap.
Step 2 - Prepare the Lumber
Lumber can require quite a bit of preparation before it is ready for assembly. Plan your wood and cut it to the size and specifications called for in your pattern. Inspect the wood for knots in the grain and place your cuts so that any characteristics of the wood that you want to enhance will be in a visible area. Conversely, if there is a major blemish it can be put in an inconspicuous place.
Step 3 - Assembly
Assemble your prepared wood pieces as detailed in the pattern. It is helpful to have a variety of fasteners on hand in the event that you need to improvise a bit. Pre-drilling holes before you drive screws will help to ensure that the wood doesn't split when driving screws. A hand sander and coarse grit sandpaper or a small planer can help to shape the wood if you need to shave a little off one side.
Step 4 - Sand
Once the assembly is mostly complete and any wood is dried, sand out any visible blemishes with a medium grit sandpaper. Next, give the entire piece a thorough sanding with the fine grit sandpaper. This will give the wood a nice sheen and make it's characteristics even more enhanced.
Step 5 - Stain
Stain your project if desired with an old cloth. Carefully read and follow the application instructions and warnings on the label. A cloth will give you more control over the stain and help prevent drips. It will also easily pick up any excess areas of stain. Let the stain cure completely, usually 48 to 72 hours.
Step 6 - Varnish
If needed (some stains include polyurethane sealant in them) apply varnish or polyurethane to you project. Again, make sure you read all the directions and warning on the label of your product prior to application.