We decided at the beginning of this project that we were going to make oak window sills for the windows. We like window sills, the cats like window sills, and we thought window sills would look good with the new inserts. We decided on oak because we wanted a good sturdy wood that would hold up against the claws of jumping and slipping cats. We could have chosen maple, and almost did, but maple did not come in a piece deep enough for us to have 6" deep stoops after the edges were routed to shape.
Today we got the window sills started. We started with 39" x 8" pieces for each window. The window frames are very narrow so to give us a 6" deep sill we had to notch the sill so it can be slipped into the frame up against the window. PeterC routed the front edge so it would be rounded - bull nosed - and cut the notches to fit each frame. Once he finished with that I took over and sanded the wood smooth and applied the first coat of stain to the tops of the sills.
We still have to stain the other side of the sills, as well as the cut edges, and we have to add an exterior, marine grade, urethane seal over the stain. The urethane will dry into a nice hard finish that will protect the wood from cat scratches but because it is an exterior urethane it will protect the wood from humidity and water in case we get water coming in the windows some day.
While PeterC worked on shaping the window sills I worked on altering an existing piece of furniture to perform two functions at once. We had a table PeterC built last year that is used to store the bins of birdseed on. This makes the bins high enough to easily fill the feeders and we could store stuff underneath it as we saw fit.
Because we burn wood for heat we also needed a place to store a two or three day supply of wood inside. Originally I was going to make a new piece of furniture but decided that it would make the cloak room to crowded. Instead, I took the birdseed table and added cross pieces to the bottom so we can stack wood under the table, thus getting two functions from the same footprint of the table.
The cross pieces are made of cedar to resist rot. To further protect the wood I stained it the same colour as the window sills. Once the stain is dry I will seal it using Spar Urethane, a marine varnish that dries to a very hard finish that will protect the pine table top from being dented. I also plan to carve something into the front crosspiece to connect the table to the decor of the rest of the room.