Sunday 16 March 2014

If its wood, we'll work on it. A Dovetailed blanket box from the late 1800s.

With prices out of control on these 20+ years ago, boxes like this were out of reach and fetching unrealistic prices. With a slump in the market, they're back to realistic prices. Made of pine, this one has nice details, great dovetails, and hand made hinges. 

Besides needing to find a key to fit the iron lock, it also needs several repairs and a total strip and refinish. The last person to work on it has done the typical refinish consisting of several coats of glossy finish, and some poor repair work.  Once back to its original glory, it will be wrapped up and given away later in the year.  

An excellent source for many hard to find items, and reproductions of many rare and different pieces of hardware

Lid stripped, starting on box.

Chemical stripping only, no sanding. Few small repairs and screw holes to fill and re-drill, for original cast hinges. Tung oil to follow stripping before finishing.

Progress as we start up on this after a break. Lower trim all to come off for refinishing and repairs

Porcupine corners. Yikes, lots of nails

Corner repair, old split with decades of gunk in it. 

Thick bottom nailed on, needs a few more to secure it for another 100 years.

OLD nails. 

Original pencil lines for 45 corners. Knot in stock hidden on back side. Bottom and back all display lots of knots as clear lumber used on sides and top.

Trim wrestled off. 

16/30 varnish coming along. 

Lee Valley, source for all things kool and obscure, supplied the new (old) square nails, $8/lb. Reassembly will be authentic.

Trim/legs repaired and stripped

Last to strip, the back, and main box is done

Drilling out old dowels on bottom

All stripped and light sanded, ready for tung oil.

First puddle, the most satisfying part of restoration projects

Inside of bottom cleaned up, ready to be attached. 

Box sanded ready for oil

Nice, old growth sides, over 22 inches wide and clear. Imagine the tree that yielded the material


All oiled up

Lid oiled and back on for show

Whats left:  dowel and fill old screw holes and re-drill, fasten handles and legs, attach lid hinges, and finish coats of oil. And a chain for the lid so it cant go over any more.

Bottom pegged, another coat of oil and lid has been paste waxed

Trim ready and feet ready to go back on, past the half way mark!

Back together


Left to do: attach lid with original cast iron hinges and fit lock and escutcheon plate

Oiled and waxed

Repairs done, ready to go

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