I'm designing a bench for the entryway of our home that will have a place to sit, have two drawers and a bottom shelf for shoes. I'm designing it in Blender, but would like some help confirming the soundness of my plan since I'm new to fine woodworking.
Let me know if more details are needed below. Thanks.
- Overall dimensions: 52" W x 21.5" H x 17.5" D
- Leg rail/stiles are 1.75" wide in two of the dimensions
- All other panels are 3/4" thick except the drawer faces which will be 5/8" thick
- Plan to use walnut and another pale hardwood for the drawer faces
Side & Back Panel views
I planned on using a double mortise-tenon on both sides of these panels to join to the leg stile. The tenons would roughly be 1" long, 3/8" thick and 1.25" wide. The panels are 5.25" in height.
I chose a double mortise-tenon joint based on the internet's "rule of thumb" size for this joinery; one mortise-tenon on each size would be too large if I wanted to avoid movement in future is my understanding. Please let me know if I'm wrong here though.
Top & bottom pieces of drawer carcass
Joining these pieces are my main trouble point right now. My first thought is to use dowels. See the picture below as an example for joining the top to the side panels. I was thinking of doing similar for the bottom piece.
If I went with this plan, then I believe the only joints really holding the stress of someone sitting on the bench, and the contents of the drawers, is the mortise-tenons described above in the side panels section -- would these joints be enough to support say 250-300 lbs?
I'm open to suggestions on how to join the bottom shelf to the legs. The shelf will not hold a significant amount of weight (several pairs of shoes). My first thought is to chisel out a notch in the leg stiles at the four points of contact and glue the shelf into the recesses. I'd like to avoid using more material to support the shelf if possible to keep the bench look minimal.