Friday, January 30, 2009

Concertina Hinge Game Table Update

We have recently added a quick amateur video of the opening and closing of the table, showing the action of the concertina hinge ....
Close up of the inlaid leather checkerboard

12/20/08 ... Long process, but the top finally arrived yesterday and we're all done. It has been a challenging and mentally rewarding project on a lot of different levels ... Click the photos to enlarge them ... Happy Holidays ...

Open .... I plan to make a short video of the opening and closing process for my clients and will eventually post a link here. It's simple, but there is a certain order to the smooth open/close process.

Closed, awaiting players

Showing the bottom view with the sliding stiffener and the little spring loaded clip that keeps the table base shut when the top is folded ..
Update 11 30 08 ... Just waiting for the folding top with the leather checkerboard inside to return ... We should be all finished by the end of the week. Looking good ...

Finish is on ... brass is in .. waiting for polish
Waiting for the top
10/23/08 We're moving along on the game table posted below on 10/17, This week, Will turned the legs and is working on the inlays and the joinery, Trevor made a jig for the shaper and fluted the legs and tomorrow, Jim will be fitting up the brass moldings . Next, we'll turn the brass feet, sand and hinge the top, rout the top for the leather, apply the stain and finish to it and then send it off to Connecticut for Russ to inlay the chess board. In the meantime, Will will complete the hinging mechanisms and the brass feet. Progress .... Click photos to enarge ...

Sample board of finishes, leather and brass samples .. the client has selected the burl and the darker red for the checkerboard

The cad drawing of the table, dimensioned and not

Fluting the legs on the shaper

The legs, plus another view of the fluting jig

Fitting the top brass break molding. The brass will be antiqued later and the stain and finish will be complete before the brass is installed for final. There will be burl and quarter inch, quarter round brass in the pockets at the top of the legs ...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

John Updike Has Left The Building

A man of words and culture has passed on. As a reader with a wide range, I haven't focused on his novels but was often entertained when I encountered his short stuff on golf, manners, and everyday life. I posted a short excerpt back in July which I will repost here in his honor and add a link to a thought provoking sort of short story from the New Yorker ... Worth a read if you like short fiction ...

His way of looking and writing about everyday life is a skill I admire and his often thoughtful critcisms of art and literature as well as his precise and wordy sense of humor are usually worth a read if you bump into them.

Here's the golf story ... click to enlarge it for better reading ...
And from yesterday's Times.... a more eloquent summary

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Some Quickie Trade Show Signs

The finished signs the colors

Fooling with fonts, layouts and offsets in a scrap
Side view
Front view finished sign
A friend of ours, Lucy Bergamini, owner of Vitriesse Glass Studio in West Pawlet, Vermont, (check out her stuff) .. asked us to make some quick signs for her new show booth set up ... We brainstormed a bit, fooled around with the fonts and type sizes on the various pieces and cut the letter holes out of 1/4 Baltic birch plywood. Jim sanded the letters and then Lucy and Jim painted the panels and the backing luann ply. My man Jim works blowing glass with Lucy two days a week and works here with us three so he started out last Friday getting started on the signs here, went to Lucy's yesterday to prime and paint and then came here this morning to glue the parts together with our favorite contact glue ... Spray 90 tm from 3M. Spray, let it sit for a minute and press for a permanent bond. Handy stuff .. stinks though ... We popped them in the vacuum bag for about 10 minutes each and they flattened right out. Great colors ... Jim'll be back here tomorrow for some woodworking ... Click the photos to enlarge them ...

Update on the Recycled Chestnut Table

11/30/09 ... We recently went back to visit this table and do some remedial work on a new light fixture that hangs over it now ... Lookin good if I do say so myself ....

home stretch ... delivery Friday ....

hand applying the varnish finish

Update on the new custom dining table coming up here. This post is getting to be a long one, but tomorrow we're ready to start the finishing ... Click the photos to enlarge them ..

Will glued up the base yesterday. First, he put the first coat of water stain on so he could sand the legs on the lathe before gluing them up. The runners went on today and it was kind of interesting. Because of the 30" inside dimension of the aprons we couldn't use our normal 2.5" high extension runners so we ordered some extra section, short, 2" high ones from Moin Hardware. These folks are very knowedgeable and when I described my problem, she suggested I use a set with extra length which is kind of counterintuitive I admit, but she explained that the sections would not then be fully extended and thus more rigid, and, with the extra sections, we could add a center leg if we needed it to one of the non moving sections.

There are no aprons becuase we wanted to be able to push the arm chairs under so we have added thin stiffeners to prevent warping.
Jeremy is putting all the screws in the runners before....
Trevor does the 'dancing (or meditating) on the table' test...impressively, negligible, very slight sag .... it should hold the turkey OK ...
As is usual with recycled wood, we had a crack or two to stablize with butterfly keys
glued up the panels yesterday ... 1/23

Scraped and cut them to shape today (funky late afternoon color above)

Pins and leaf cuts Monday

The legs and the lumber .... 1/22 ... The two on the left are hand turned and sanded and the two on the right are as they come off the Vega duplicator if both the cutter and the operator are nice and sharp.

Will, cleaning up the turnings by hand

1/15 New custom dining table coming up here. We finalized the designs early last week and the wood arrived today from my friends at Appalachian Woods "a premier provider of reclaimed antique lumber" in Stuarts Draft, Virginia, and, I might add, especially speedy on this order ... I have been getting recycled chestnut from them off and on for several years now and this latest load did not disappoint ... We just got it today and haven't milled any of it yet, but it appears bright and clean with just the 'right' amount of worminess. It's stacked in the finish room to acclimate for a while until we finish the projects were working on ... won't be long though before we get started on it ...

The table is a 64" diameter expanding round with leaves and it's loosely based on a rectangular expanding farm style table we made for another client a few years ago ....

Plan view closed

Plan view with leaves

The chestnut including turning stock for the legs ... The inspection dog is checking the lumber for edibles...

Inspiration table ... Half of a 23'6" table we made for another client ... This table 36" wide, hooks onto this table, also " 36 " wide

Friday, January 23, 2009

A New Custom Light Fixture

Plugged in in the shop .. On location it will cast light up,down and to the sides

Future home of the light fixture

Looking down into the top .. compact florescent 60w bulb

Sam just finished this custom light fixture to go with the Contemporary Railing he made back in the fall .... It's constructed from extra pieces of the hollow posts he cut during construction. The stripe down the front is a piece of figured redwood veneer on plexiglass which looks good whether the light is off or on ... Click the photos to enlarge them ...

Friday, January 16, 2009

Cool Item From The Metalshop

The flowers are flying ... Sam made three roses last week and this 'lilly' on Monday ... can't wait to see what he does with them ...

on the 'stem'

Sam has been checking out some instructional video stuff on the internet .... This, aparently, was a good one. Cool object ... Click the pictures for better viewing ... he's made a couple more since this one ..going for a bouquet I think ... each one gets better ...

No Time For Details

Think of this one as a sort of 'mother-of-all-posts' ... For one reason or another this month, I have been too busy to write in any detail. New requests for work are coming in .. Some of them are pretty involved design wise. Plus we're working on two different sets of chairs, a two chair addition to a set of 8 we made in 1991 (luckily we still had some patterns and jigs) .... and one set is a redesign of a chair we also made first in the 90's. Chairs, particualrly new deisgns require a lot of attention.
Last weekend, Will and I went to the Vineyard to set up a pool table and I am headed for NYC this Sunday to drop off the 'Art Deco' 'cabinet. Work has even slightly cut into my paddle tennis time. I am not, however, complaining, but figure myself as being kind of lucky for the moment ..... Here's what were working on ... Click the pictures for better viewing ...

A set of eight chairs based loosely on the green one which is the mockup from the originals


There will by 6 sides and two arms in this set
This is one of the original set of 8 that we're making two more for ..

Carved 'Spanish' feet and a nice turned stretcher

An important original angle drilling jig for the side round stretchers. The bottom piece of poplar is angled on the same angle as the front to back of the chairs ... +/- 7 degrees I think it is .. Glad we saved this one ...

Will is signing the ebony cabinet, which mostly, except for Trevor's inlay work and my small assist hanging the doors, he did all the work on. This photo shows the nice shine ... It's off to the city Sunday ...

DCF 2008

Will and I set up the pool table and light fixture on the Vineyard last weekend. the clients were happy and after some good live music Friday night, we ...

toured around a sort of deserted Edgartown ... unbelievable architecture .

Spire on the Methodist Church ... columns are about 48" in diameter at the base

The doors are at least 10' high ... IMHO a 'perfect' piece of Federal architecture

We had a request for a coffee table with a base like the card table posted in December ...
We designed it, but the order is not confirmed

This is a new design project for a client in Weston ... we're still working on the designs for this wall and two others in the same room ... good project for a good client ..
Considered all closed doors
We're also reworking the mantle detail and considering stone for the fireplace
Still lots to do on the edesign for this one before we can start ... The carpenters are framing now though so hopefully it won't be long ..
We designed a coffee table with 'hidden' compartments ... a website request ... unconfirmed as yet

We did a field test for safety equipment to protect us from tablesaw kickback

A new railing project design for Sam .. a complex one to figure out with all the levels and corners.
Got it figured now and it will get underway next week sometime

Designed some simple mirrors for over the tapered cabinets ... unconfirmed as yet

Another web request for a custom cofee table based on one we built several years ago ..
Getting close but as yet unconfirmed
Got an order for two coffee tables like this one ...