Thursday, May 29, 2008

Final Table Drawings

Here is the final set of drawings for the single-pedestal extension table I'll begin building tomorrow.

The trickiest part about designing single-pedestal tables is ensuring that the diameter described by the feet's end-points is sufficient to balance the weight of the top. What a nightmare it would be if the first time one's clients placed a roast turkey towards the edge of the table the whole thing crashed to the floor.

I consulted Harrison, my woodworking mentor (he's a life mentor too), and he reported that he usually aims for the base to be sized between 2/3 and 3/4 of the top's diameter. He did point out, though, that back in the day most cabinetmakers chose from one or two pedestal patterns and just stuck whatever size top was required on top of it. I guess they just kept their fingers crossed that disaster would be averted. I need more assurance of success than that, which is why I spent part of the day making a scale model. Unfortunately I don't have a set of scale people and scale place settings to give the thing a truly scientific test, but one can only go so far!

Here's a drawing of the table in its closed position, which will seat four diners quite comfortably.



This one shows the table with its leaf installed which allows for the addition of two more diners.



This third drawing is a detail view of the pedestal's column. Like the Biedermeier designers, I favor the simpler orders of classical columns, Doric and Tuscan, over the more elaborate Ionic and Corinthian forms. This example is basically a truncated Doric column.



Next is a detail of the leg.



Here's a detail view of the apron showing its vertically-oriented quarter-sawn maple veneer and simple quirk-and-bead.



Finally, here is a sketch of the table's "works." I'll write more in another post about the system I'm using to ensure that the ends move smoothly without changing the pedestal's position.



Tomorrow morning I'm off to the Charlottesville area to pick up the lumber for this project.

1 comment:

neil said...

Cool Tim.......I'll be check'in in to follow the build.

Tim, I've accumulated an above average reference library, and it was fun jumping into books I hadn't in quite awhile. The Biedermeir reference pushed me into Empire Furniture and provided me a couple of breezes through some old friends.

Thanks........Neil