Enough with the furniture. It’s only in the title but I am not contractually required to write only about furniture. For a change of pace and to provide some entertainment for family:
As many of you know, I spent two weeks in Galapagos Islands this past September. Not my first choice of vacations but it can’t always be about me. The five I was traveling with were beyond excited. What do I know? That’s why I jet off to Boston given a chance.
Caution – Photo Geek content.
I took around 1200 pictures, Digital film is cheap. I bought me a new Nikon D5300 for the small size and I really needed the WiFi and GPS. Really. And I wanted to carry a third type of battery. Problem was I ended up mostly using my trusty old Nikon D80. My preferred lens, the AF VR-Nikkor 80-400mm does not have an internal focusing motor. That would be the AF-S VR-Nikkor 80-400mm. And at $2600, I was prepared to compromise. As we all know, smaller Nikon D-SLR’s starting with the D40 require AF-S lenses with internal focusing motors while the larger D-SLR’s have the focusing motor and can use older lenses.
At 43 oz., it was also as big a lens as I wanted to carry. I had a 70-300mm and an 18-200mm lens but the additional 100mm made a huge difference. I got pictures that others didn’t. That’s why I’m sharing.
But I did use the new high-speed daylight balanced SanDisk film cards. (Really, no such thing.)
One day at sunset, there were wave after wave of gulls flying by at below dune height. In my twisted mind, I thought of planes flying to Berlin in WWII. They just kept coming. And shortly before we left for the day, the reversed their flights.
Not being hunted there, the creatures are rather blasé about us. We were required to stay 6′ from them but the creatures haven’t read the same manual. We had to come up with passive/aggressive ways to get them off of the paths. And the turtles, just forget about it.
There are too many pictures in these sets. They were made for the 20 passengers and 10 crew on the boat. Being there, the pictures mean different things to them then they do to you, my loyal readers. If I were do a presentation, I would reduce the sets but they are there to look at until you are done.
Click HERE to see Set 3 of the Galapagos beasts.
Click HERE to see Set 6 of the beasts.
And to see all picture I have on Flickr, click HERE to see all my sets and look to your heart’s content.
Just don’t tell me I’ve got too many pictures. I know and it doesn’t matter.
When I was in Boston a few weeks back, I really didn’t have plans for Saturday. I did some research and came up with Manchester, NH. A few antiques shop, an Escher show and Frank Lloyd Wright’s designed Zimmerman House at the Currier Museum of Art. The kicker for me was the Millyard Museum at the old Amoskeag Manufacturing Company mill. I like museums. I love mills. A museum in a mill is a dream come true. As pilfered from the Wikipweida article: The Amoskeag Manufacturing Company was a textile manufacturer which founded Manchester, New Hampshire. From modest beginnings in near wilderness, it grew throughout the 19th century into the largest cotton textile plant in the world. At its peak, Amoskeag was unrivaled both for the quality and quantity of its products. But with great size came an inability to adapt. In the early 20th century, the business failed in changing economic and social conditions. It was/is a huge mill complex. This photo was from an earlier post billed as ironic for some:
What makes it ironic is the large AUTODESK sign. One of Autodesk’s main products is AutoCAD. High’ish tech in a historic mill. Anyway, inside the mill there isn’t much furniture. It was a mill after all, not a furniture factory. There is this one tall chest of drawers in the Queen Anne style. It was made by John Kimball for John and Molly Start in 1762.
We know it was made by John Kimball because unlike other furniture makers of his era, he signed his creations. Big. On the back. Like this:
There was a clock and these foundry patterns:
They were early adopters of integrated manufacturing. They wanted to make all the parts and the parts to make the parts and be dependent on no one. They were dominant manufactures of steam fire pumpers and early fire engines like these:
(They didn’t actually pump fire, the steam engines pumped water.) And they have looms:
And loom related stuff like this warp winding device:
To seem more pictures of the chest of drawers, pumpers and looms, click HERE to see the entire set.
I have written a few blogs about bodging and being bodged. My most favorite were My Mother was a Soviet Bodger and Teenaged Mutant Ninja Bodgers. Bodging as I use it means doing what must be done to make things work the best you can. Often modifying hardware to make it work.
The last blog was mostly about using bail or pull escutcheons for keyhole escutcheons. Like this:
Last week, I saw a chest that had escutcheons that seem to be designed to work either way. This is an escutcheon used with a bail.
And the keyhole version:
It works. Keeps down your escutcheon inventory.
And it looks better than just banging in a hole.
Especially when it’s the same table.
We hosted a party for my wife’s staff Friday night. With proper protections, Ellen was using the Thomas Day game table for the wine station. 24 wine glasses and 8-10 bottles of wine. Nothing too heavy. 20 minute before guests arrived, Ellen asked me to open the white wine. While opening the last white, the table suddenly tipped back and to the left. Things fell over. I grabbed the table and Ellen started the salvage operation. With all her Jenga®-like decisions, we lost only one wine glass (broken) and three bottles of red wine (spilled).
A foot had broken off. Martin O’Brien and I had examined the table in detail a few weeks back and noticed many bad repairs. This was one of them.
I took some pictures of the foot and uploaded them to HERE.
Best practices are to add yellow glue over hide glue, aren’t they?
Ellen feels enormous guilt and I keep reassuring her no harm was done. Chris Schwarz, Martin O’Brien and I all explained she did us favor. The leg had to come off and we weren’t sure how to do it. Paralysis by analysis. Now we know the answer to pull lightly on them.
This is the failed glue joint:
And dowels are less useful than most people assume. They maybe good for alignment but offer very little to joint strength and only slightly more to glue strength.
The table is being documented as it being disassembled. Soon it will be dealt with somewhere in the restoration/preservation/conservation spectrum.
Earlier Ellen asked me what my three-year goals were. She’s one of those but I love her anyway. After some consideration I believe that one goal is to have the skills to build a reproduction of this table in three years. I might make it. I already made a foot and will show you an interesting veneering technique I learned examining the Day foot shortly.
Well, I got a blog out of it.
Chris Schwarz and I have an informal agreement under which I sequester any of my pictures that he uses in his blog for about a year. It is informal in that we have never spoken of it. In fact, as far I can tell, we have never met. This is only partially due to an existing restraining order. I am not at liberty to discuss who requested the restraining order but do I strike you as the type of who squanders money on lawyers?
I just noticed that I took the Klint chairs out of the Flickr set of the local auction I shared yesterday. I remember pulling the pictures to let Chris write his blog about them and forgot to add them back in. I don’t think he ever published them all.
I know you want to see them so here they are:
Here’s Chris’s drawings from the blog.
A little over a year ago, there was an exceptional auction in town. From this auction, I have blogged about:
The Rotary Wooten Desk
End Grain Veneers
Thomas Day Chests
Kaare Klint ‘Safari Chairs’ (Chris Schwarz and Lost Art Press, actually)
I have just never gotten around to posting the entire set. And the set is about to expire. They don’t last forever. Under ideal conditions, you can get about 13 months. I have been taking this set out looking at it regularly and allowing it to come to room temperature before returning it to storage.
But before I do, a few more highlights. Like this mundane tilt-top table:
And these stands:
And the other:
Go see the entire set (184 pictures) HERE.
I was sitting around my hotel room last night considering my options for today, Saturday. Thursday, I flew up to Boston and toured the Museum of Fine Art. Then off to Woburn to visit the new Woodcraft. Not a big deal but it got me out of Boston before the traffic got too bad. It’s always bad, before it got worse. It will be a nice store once they get it unpacked.
Friday was the Lie-Nielsen Hand Tool Event at the Furniture Institute of Massachusetts in Beverly, the Peabody Essex Museum, The House of Seven Gables and Nathaniel Hawthorne’s birthplace. And then after lunch…
No, that was a full day. Since it was early, I stopped at a mall to kill time and possibly do some damage control. (See yesterday.)
For reasons I won’t go into here, I wasn’t sure if I would be cleared to make this trip until Tuesday. I hadn’t invested too much time into the planning beyond Friday. I made a trip to lobby brochure rack and checked the web and saw that Manchester, NH showed promise. Many things to do and only about an hour away.
Finally to the Currier Museum of Art. This museum currently has a spectacular M. C. Escher exhibition. Escher is more than just his transformations and optical illusions. There are many amazing woodblock prints and lithographs of Amalfi, Abruzzi, Sicily and many other European locations. And other amazing still lifes and intimate images.
But, wait! There’s more! The Currier also owns and exhibits the Zimmerman House, a Frank Lloyd Wright Usonian house and the only Wright house in New England open the public.
Looking for the Escher exhibit, I stumbled across a small contemporary furniture exhibit. Only five pieces but nice pieces. I don’t always like contemporary furniture but these I liked.
First is Spring Desk, 1996 by Jere Osgood:
And the True Love Blues, 2000 by Jon Brooks:
Since my stats are down, you have to go to Flickr to see the entire set HERE.
And they have period furniture as well. Soon.
Today I visited the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts. The main reason for going was to see the exhibit: In Plain Sight: Discovering the Furniture of Nathaniel Gould. Chuck Bender wrote about this exhibit in September on his late Popular Woodworking blog.
I went and am now in the dog house. I picked this weekend based on the fact my wife and a group of our friends were going to the beach on Emerald Isle, NC. It is a beach house that has by rented by our group for six of the past eight years. Problem is I don’t love the beach as they do. I grew up in Western Pennsylvania. We didn’t have beaches. They go to the beach, I go to Boston. Seems fair.
Now the bigger problem is that my wife’s work schedule changed and she isn’t able to go to the beach and I still went to Boston. The airplane tickets were non-refundable. At times the word conspires against you.
Back to the woodworking content of the blog. In February, I wrote the blog Bodged, it’s not what you think with a follow-up last Friday, They Did It the Hard Way, Bodged II. This is not bodging, it’s custom fitting.
Looking at this Nathaniel Gould secretary:
I took a look at the brasses and saw they were not all lying flat but some had been well fitted to the slant front and drawers.
And it goes both ways:
And this last picture is neither fitted nor bodged but it is a nice carved shell:
Oh, what the heck, the top shell and finial are interesting, too.
Only time will tell how much trouble I’m in. Probably not all that much. I have a truly understanding and tolerant wife. I do. Really.