This is why I am still a Novice - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 05-11-2011, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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This is why I am still a Novice

So my wife loved this old chair that was in the attic. She hinted that it would be great if I reupholstered it. No me being a great husband and her being out of town for business this whole week I thought why not. Well if you look at the pictures you can see that the frame of this chair has more holes than a politicians promise. In addition I pulled more tacks out of this chair that if melted down I cold have sealed the hole in the titanic. Lastly the wood was so brittle from being in the attic for 20+ years that I thought the heat from me taking the upholstery off would light the wood on fire. So now what I have done is replicated the pieces from the chair and I am beginning to try and put it together. So here are the million dollar questions.

1.) is there a particular name for this type of chair?
2.) whats the best way to begin reassembly?
3. How do I tell the bevel of this chair has the wood was so deteriorated that I could not even figure it out


Last edited by Novicesaw; 05-15-2011 at 03:13 PM. Reason: added new pics
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-11-2011, 11:23 PM
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hey novice, go to edit and behind each pic hit your space bar this will put them all on top one another instead of in a series,

and have fun with your chair
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post #3 of 9 Old 05-11-2011, 11:39 PM
where's my table saw?
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That chair is not "Fine Woodworking" joinery

The joints look like they are stapled across to hold things together.
Interesting "joinery. At any rate you have chosen to do this for the right reasons. I don't see the bevel piece you are referring to, but
I'd just replace any missing pieces with scrap poplar or mahogany.
If you have upholsterd before then you're ahead of my skill level in that. I've restored a few antique dressers and such, so I'm OK on the wood working end. Good luck on this project and post the photos as you make progress! bill

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #4 of 9 Old 05-12-2011, 08:19 AM
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It'd hard to tell from photos, but the chair don't look all that bad. Most of these older upholstered chairs were virtually held together by the upholstery.

Tony B

Retired woodworker, amongst other things, Sold full time cruising boat and now full time cruising in RV. Currently in Somerville, Tx
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post #5 of 9 Old 05-12-2011, 09:18 AM
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The chair looks a bit like a combination of Victorian/Queen Anne, except for the leg design. You've got quite a project there, but it's not all that difficult. The assembly was likely done with a air wide crown stapler (1/2" crown). You could rent a stapler, and use 1/2" or 3/4" crown. For some joints using a corrugated fastener works pretty good. You could hammer them in, or shoot with a air corrugated fastener gun. If you hammer them in, back up the pieces so you don't jar the chair apart. That fastener pulls the wood together as it penetrates the wood.

Upholstered chairs are basically a rough type assembly. Getting replacement pieces with the correct angle, use an adjustable protractor, or an adjustable bevel, and set the protractor on the joint and transfer the angle to the pieces to be cut. Don't necessarily think that a corresponding piece for the left side will match the right side.

You can drill angle holes (countersunk) and use flat head phillips, or square drive screws if you need to. You can drill pieces already fitted with dowel holes. Once a dowel is glued in, it will hold the joint.

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post #6 of 9 Old 05-15-2011, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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updated with pictures

Well as Rocky would say I am a real ham and egger but I tried. This chair was hand made as each peice was not identical to the mirror side. SO here it is.

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post #7 of 9 Old 05-15-2011, 02:51 PM
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That looks like a nice job on the frame.
What's the next step? Add the wings and arms? Are you going to use the originals or use them as patterns for new ones? Can you match stain on the wings and arms to the legs if you use the originals.
This is an interesting project. Hope you keep us posted as you progress. Looks like something I'd like to try.
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post #8 of 9 Old 05-18-2011, 12:39 AM
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My response would have been to tell the wife to stay out of the attic, that you think there are snakes or something up there...
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post #9 of 9 Old 05-18-2011, 08:52 AM
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you have to add more stability in the joints. Also you gotta add a little class to it.. Smoother is always better man!
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