A few blogs I stated that I didn’t see many dovetail failures. They fail, I just don’t see them. If they fail dramatically, they are called kindling. Or they have been repaired.

I saw a genuine dovetail failure at the quarterly catalog auction preview today. It is subtle and not a catastrophic failure, but a failure none the less.

It is from this 18th century Chippendale inlaid chest on chest:

It's English.

It’s English.

Here is the failure:

Look closely, you can see the problem.

Look closely, you can see the problem.

The drawer front has cupped putting a great deal of force causing two pins to fail. Yet the joint is holding together.

An enlarged view of the failure.

An enlarged view of the failure.

Failure is always on option, really.

And here are the rest of the images of this chest on chest.

A slightly different Chippendale pull.

A slightly different Chippendale pull.

And a view of the upper molding.

The cove actually extends above the outer edge of the molding.

The cove actually extends above the outer edge of the molding.

In the past few months, I have been documenting the upper moldings of case pieces. I find it interesting. Let me know if you don’t.