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2212Re: [medievalsawdust] 14 th C chests

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  • Tim Bray
    Apr 6, 2004
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      >I am interested in making a few wooden chests for my SCA encampment. I
      >am looking at the later part of the 14 th century. I was considering
      >using the plans in Diehl's book Medieval Furniture project 10 The
      >Paneled Coffer.

      That must be in the second book, which I don't have. But I haven't seen
      anything to indicate that frame-and panel chests were made before the 15th
      c. For the late 14th I would go with a clamped-front style instead, maybe
      with some carving or ironwork. The book Sir Stanford recommended is an
      excellent resource for these. Don't be put off by the 13th c attribution
      in the title, the same style was in continuous use from early 13th through
      late 16th c.

      >I have a stack of red oak sitting outside (it has been air drying for
      >two winters now) of various thicknesses 1 to 8 cm thick.

      The 1 cm (pretty thin!) should be dry, but the 8 cm might not be. You can
      probably design around this anyway. The clamped-front style is a
      remarkably robust design, despite the "cross-grain situation" in the front
      and back panels. Elongate the peg holes a little in the direction of
      possible shrinkage and you're okay.

      >Before I put
      >in the sweat of trimming it and planing it I want to have an idea what
      >pieces I need.

      A clamped-front chest is not an easy project, there are a lot of pieces
      (depending on how you want to do the ends) and some careful joinery
      (especially the lid batten pin-hinges), so you will want to draw the whole
      thing out to scale and work out the dimensions and joints for each piece
      before you touch any wood. You need thick stuff (about 3 to 4 cm) for the
      legs, medium thick (2 to 2.5 cm) for the front and back panels and the lid
      (and the battens), thin stuff (even as thin as 1 cm) for the end and bottom
      panels, and maybe some more thick stuff for the joined frames on the ends.

      Cheers,
      Colin


      Albion Works
      Furniture and Accessories
      For the Medievalist!
      http://www.albionworks.net
      http://www.albionworks.com
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