Backing up for a head-start – Windsor chairmaking

shaved Windsor Oct 2020

I assembled my 2nd shaved windsor chair of this century last week. I first wrote about it here – https://pfollansbee.wordpress.com/2020/10/09/shaved-windsor-chair-take-2/  (all that nonsense I blathered about grain direction, ray plane, post & rung compromise is out the window. Drew Langsner set me straight after that post.)

This chair survived assembly, barely. I remember reading  a Dave Sawyer quote “If a chair survives assembly, it should last __ years.” Something to that effect anyway. 

But it was not without its excitement, all driven by my haste and being decades out of practice. One post was “windswept” – it leans out further than its mate – which is a reaming mistake. Galbert’s book has a good discussion of all the ways the posts on a chair like this can be wrong and how to avoid them. (chapter 17: Reaming in Chairmaker’s Notebook https://lostartpress.com/products/chairmakers-notebook )

The other mistake I made was using yellow glue. Never again, it’s hide glue for me from here on in with chairs. The joints seized and it took a lot of effort to get things together. I should have marked a line on the spindle tenons where they join the seat. One or two of them might not be all the way home. 

But it’s all wedged and is now a shop-chair I don’t need. But I’m determined to make a few chairs like this in succession – the first one I assembled in January, and this one here in late October. Better to not have 10 months between attempts. 

So to back up for a head start – I’ve gone back to school. Signed up for the online class with Elia Bizzarri and Curtis Buchanan http://handtoolwoodworking.com/online-classes/

ready for next class

The live class is 2 hours on Saturday afternoons, then it gets posted where you can re-watch it later if you happen to be a poor note-taker like me. And there’s a suggested price, but they want anyone to be able to take this class regardless of money, so you can pay what you will as well. Hard to beat a deal like that. And already it’s paying off – Curtis pointed out that he’s been building these chairs for a few years now, and since he made the videos about it, he’s changed a few minor things here & there…so this is the “updated” video series on making this chair.