The millstones turn slowly but grind exceedingly fine

I’m not sure who to attribute the headline quote to, but over the years I’ve come to realize that most of the really great quotations can be attributed to either Jesus, Aristotle, Plato, Edmund Burke or the Buddha.  So attribute as you see fit.  But the quotation is pretty reflective of how Les and I are progressing on the Queen Anne drop leaf table that we started some time ago.  It’s slow going but steady. The Holidays always tend to slow things down as well.

We’ve gotten the hinge panels made.  We had cut the prototypes by hand and they worked very well. However, we decided to make the finals on the table saw.  The process is not unlike making box joints. Extra care has to be taken when drilling the hinge pin hole to insure that the hinge swings squarely and doesn’t bind.

We’ve mortised the posts and tenoned the aprons and the “dry fit” looks pretty good.



You’ll note that we haven’t yet removed the waste from the leg posts.  Also, note that the short aprons are positioned farther forward on the posts than the long aprons.  The “off-set” position of the long (or side) aprons is required as the hinge panels are affixed to the long aprons and, in fact, they will appear as the “show” apron. After everything is checked for fit, the waste from the leg posts will be removed and the aprons and post surfaces will be made flush.  After the decorative profiles are cut into the aprons, the buttressed knee blocks will be attached.

Just so we don’t forget to mention it; when laying out the top center panel, remember to make it wide enough to allow the leafs to hang plumb and not strike the knees of the legs.  We’re going to give the center panel an extra half inch, just to be sure.  A quarter of an inch clearance on each side should be more than adequate.



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2 Comments on “The millstones turn slowly but grind exceedingly fine”

  1. rondennis303 Says:

    Although Longfellow lifted a version:

    “A millstone and the human heart are driven ever round,
    If they have nothing else to grind, they must themselves be ground.
    – translation of Friedrich von Logau’s ‘Sinnegedichte’ ”

    I believe the original quote according to the Oxford Dictonary of Quotations it is


    The mills of God grind slowly, yet they grind exceeding small.

    They then say


    mid seventeenth century; translation of an anonymous verse in Sextus Empiricus Adversus Mathematicos bk. I, sect. 287.

    Whoa! Now that’s something we can all forget about.

    • D.B. Laney Says:

      I can’t believe that I almost forgot Nietzsche, Heraclitus and Marcus Aurelius. These were guys with something worthwhile to say. I’ll bet they’d be pretty cool to hang out with, maybe have a couple of brewskis. Hey! Can you ever put your toe in the same stream?

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