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).

What it looked like before. Bad repairs and all.

What it looked like before. Bad repairs and all.

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.

The foot that done fell off.

The foot that done fell off.

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.

It looks like this now. Three legs off, one to go.

It looks like this now. Three legs off, one to go.

This is the failed glue joint:

Yellow glue works best when it is thick enough to measure. With a yardstick.

Yellow glue works best when it is thick enough to measure. With a yardstick.

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.