walnut chest, no woes yet

well, like I mentioned the other night, if you enjoyed watching me struggle with the walnut high chair, you get another chance to see me wince. I am making two wainscot chairs in oak for a customer – here’s one underway.

wainscot chair in oak

Same customer added two board chests to the gig, neither is Anglo, and only one might be 17th-century. But, to get to do the chairs, I took the chests too – it’s a long story that I won’t go into in public, but here is the original of the walnut board chest.

walnut chest, probably 19th c


Simple board chest, nailed together. finished off with applied moldings framing the boards, a two-piece base molding, carved feet, and carved cleats and a lip fitted to the underside of the lid.

the applied molding:

applied molding

the carved pattern attached to the lid:

Maybe you saw the boards loaded in the car in the post this week. I got the timber from Paul Lelito, after meeting him at a SAPFM demo. He had just what I needed, saved me from buying kiln-dried stuff, so now I get to try working air-dried walnut. Here’s a post from Steve Branam’s blog about Paul’s woodcutting business: http://www.closegrain.com/2011/04/sapfm-new-england-chapter-april-meeting.html

I didn’t get any shots yet of the chest nailed up, but tonight I started sawing stock for the cleats and base moldings. After I  jointed one edge, I used a marking gauge to strike the widths I wanted, then ripped them. I like to rip short stuff like this standing up, so I use the holdfast to secure it to the front leg of my bench.


I roughed out a few sections,


then planed them.

That was enough, after working all day, then working into the evening. So then I went home.



3 thoughts on “walnut chest, no woes yet

  1. Good luck!

    I think you are very bold to take on walnut when we all know how much you have recently suffered. Mind you, the last outcome did justify all the angst. You should take up the Tour de France bike race, it caters for chaps who don’t know their limits.

  2. The wainscot or joined armchairs that drive me crazy are those wherein twist is hatcheted on the front faces of the rear posts, such that the side stretcher & side seat rail abutments are at a different angle from the arm abutments. Perhaps Peter remembers that most vividly from the so-called Winthrop joined great chair at the Connecticut Historical Society. Some more extreme examples are known in English chairs I think. Drives me crazy. I am horrified that you have make repros of 19C repro Italian cassone. Not that alien, really, but still an oddball project to have been roped into. But imagine making them in far more intractable, knurly Juglans regia!!!

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