Thursday, September 20, 2012

Waltham Windsor Chairs; Laminating Rails

I am currently working on a set of 10 Waltham Chairs for a customer in Texas.  There are 8 of my regular Waltham Arm chairs and 2 of my Tall Waltham Arm chairs.
The rails of the chairs are laminated from cherry veneers. Below is a picture that shows a stack of veneers, a rough glued arm rail and the mold that it is glued on, as well as a rail that is all shaped and ready for sanding.

A freshly glued arm rail lamination still in the clamps.

Arm spindles are brought to zero moisture content under the heat of 100watt bulbs.  I leave them under the light for  about 1/2 at minimum.
5 of the order of 10 chairs that I am working on now.
Now that the chairs are all built, I am working with the client to finalize the color that they will be painted with milk paint.  I need to do more samples of different mixtures of colors to get just the right gray.  You can't take a Benjamin Moore color chip to the paint store to get a matching milk paint color. Some colors, like this one will take some trial and error. So far, just error.
I will keep you posted in the color progress.

Enjoy the crisp weather,

Below is a shot of Claire's and my latest sailing trip to a near by beach.  Usually we can sail up to the bottom edge of the photo. The boat is grounded in about 12" of water now. (not the green canoe) The level of Lake Champlain is very low. I do not think that I have seen it so low.

1 comment:

  1. I am fascinated that you made a windsor arm by laminating venners rather than the usual (and rather wasteful) method of steam bending split oak or ash laths. The first winndsor I made I copied from out of M Dunbars book, the sack back one. But I simply could not source any clear straight logs, any logs really at that time. So I decided to laminate an arm and a back as well. It worked ok.
    Can I ask please, how did you arrive at the shape for the mold? I notice it is tighter radius than the finished shape of the arm because they tend to spring open a little. Is there any sort of formula to find that or is it a case of do a few proto types to get the final profile?
    Its interesting that John Brown (welsh chairmaker) made his steam bent chair arms by sawing narrow laths off of a board of very clean straight ash, he just used a bandsaw to follow the growth ring, if the lath came out not quite straight, no problem. I thought that seems a good way to do it, less waste...
    cheers Jonathan