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Re: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

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  • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
    What would this box have been used for? The use it was intended for would have a great deal of influence on the joints. The fancier the use the fancier the
    Message 1 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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      What would this box have been used for?

      The use it was intended for would have a
      great deal of influence on the joints.

      The 'fancier' the use the 'fancier' the joints....

      and the owners place in society would make a
      difference also.....

      You could live your entire life in debt trying to 
      maintain the proper 'front' for your rank.....

       
      Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

      Aude Aliquid Dignum
      ' Dare Something Worthy '



      From: Bill Schongar (bschonga) <bschonga@...>
      To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Thu, July 1, 2010 3:59:21 PM
      Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

       

      Hi folks,

      Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
      would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
      13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?

      I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
      dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
      what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
      covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.

      Thanks,
      -Liam


    • Bill McNutt
      I don t have my references with me so I m shooting from the hip: I don t think dovetails are period for 13th century. The most common joint I ve seen has
      Message 2 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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        I don’t have my references with me so I’m shooting from the hip:

         

        I don’t’ think dovetails are period for 13th century.  The most common joint I’ve seen has been butted-and-nailed.

         

        After that I think I’ve seen through-tenons and rabbeted joints with nails.

         

        Will

         

        From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Bill Schongar (bschonga)
        Sent: Thursday, July 01, 2010 3:59 PM
        To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

         

         

        Hi folks,

        Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
        would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
        13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?

        I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
        dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
        what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
        covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.

        Thanks,
        -Liam

      • R. Loos
        They had dovetails, lap joints, wedge tendons, mortise and tendon, and tons more. ... They had dovetails, lap joints, wedge tendons, mortise and tendon, and
        Message 3 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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          They had dovetails, lap joints, wedge tendons, mortise and tendon, and tons more.

          On Thu, 2010-07-01 at 16:19 -0400, Bill McNutt wrote:
           
          I don’t have my references with me so I’m shooting from the hip:

           

          I don’t’ think dovetails are period for 13th century.  The most common joint I’ve seen has been butted-and-nailed.

           

          After that I think I’ve seen through-tenons and rabbeted joints with nails.

           

          Will

           

          From:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Bill Schongar (bschonga)
          Sent: Thursday, July 01, 2010 3:59 PM
          To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?


           

           

          Hi folks,

          Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
          would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
          13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?

          I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
          dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
          what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
          covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.

          Thanks,
          -Liam




        • Bill Schongar (bschonga)
          The period examples I’ve seen pictures of of are leather covered and then adorned with silver and gold-gilt enameled medallions with the owner’s crests
          Message 4 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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            The period examples I’ve seen pictures of  of are leather covered and then adorned with silver and gold-gilt enameled medallions with the owner’s crests and random beasties, so definitely way on the “fancy” end for people of status.

             

            -Liam

             

            From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
            Sent: Thursday, July 01, 2010 4:04 PM
            To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

             

             

            What would this box have been used for?

             

            The use it was intended for would have a

            great deal of influence on the joints.

             

            The 'fancier' the use the 'fancier' the joints....

             

            and the owners place in society would make a

            difference also.....

             

            You could live your entire life in debt trying to 

            maintain the proper 'front' for your rank.....

             

             

            Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

            Aude Aliquid Dignum
            ' Dare Something Worthy '

             

             


            From: Bill Schongar (bschonga) <bschonga@...>
            To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Thu, July 1, 2010 3:59:21 PM
            Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

             

            Hi folks,

            Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
            would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
            13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?

            I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
            dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
            what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
            covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.

            Thanks,
            -Liam

             

          • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
            Anyone know of examples of the box joint or finger joint being used in period ? Meaning the modern box joint not a joint for a box..... lol
            Message 5 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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              Anyone know of examples of the 'box joint'
              or 'finger joint' being used in 'period'?

              Meaning the modern 'box joint' not a joint for
              a box..... lol



              just curious....
               
              Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

              Aude Aliquid Dignum
              ' Dare Something Worthy '



            • R. Loos
              I haven t found much on the box joint, but I did stumble upon a pretty well done site: http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/wood.shtml
              Message 6 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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                I haven't found much on the box joint, but I did stumble upon a pretty well done site: http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/wood.shtml

                On Thu, 2010-07-01 at 14:01 -0700, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart wrote:
                 

                Anyone know of examples of the 'box joint'
                or 'finger joint' being used in 'period'?


                Meaning the modern 'box joint' not a joint for
                a box..... lol


                http://www.daveswoodworks.org/Box_Joint_05.JPG




                just curious....
                 
                Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

                Aude Aliquid Dignum
                ' Dare Something Worthy '








              • Jeffrey Johnson
                Box/finger joints are virtually unknown before the advent of modern mass produced furniture. It relies almost completely on the strength of glue to hold
                Message 7 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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                  Box/finger joints are virtually unknown before the advent of modern mass produced furniture. It relies almost completely on the strength of glue to hold together -  something not prudent with animal-derived protien glues.

                  Regarding the original question, most coffrets I recollect from that early are nailed, then covered with leather and/or strapped with metal.   

                  On Jul 1, 2010 7:43 PM, "R. Loos" <original_invariance@...> wrote:

                   

                  I haven't found much on the box joint, but I did stumble upon a pretty well done site: http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/wood.shtml



                  On Thu, 2010-07-01 at 14:01 -0700, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart wrote:
                  >
                  >  
                  >
                  >
                  > Anyone know of exampl...

                • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
                  Ref Box joint- that was what I expected to hear thanks! Baron Conal O hAirt / Jim Hart Aude Aliquid Dignum Dare Something Worthy
                  Message 8 of 23 , Jul 1, 2010
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                    Ref Box joint- that was what I expected to hear    thanks!
                     
                    Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

                    Aude Aliquid Dignum
                    ' Dare Something Worthy '



                    From: Jeffrey Johnson <jljonsn@...>
                    To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                    Sent: Thu, July 1, 2010 8:11:16 PM
                    Subject: Re: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                     

                    Box/finger joints are virtually unknown before the advent of modern mass produced furniture. It relies almost completely on the strength of glue to hold together -  something not prudent with animal-derived protien glues.

                    Regarding the original question, most coffrets I recollect from that early are nailed, then covered with leather and/or strapped with metal.   

                    On Jul 1, 2010 7:43 PM, "R. Loos" <original_invariance @hotmail. com> wrote:

                     

                    I haven't found much on the box joint, but I did stumble upon a pretty well done site: http://www.vikingan swerlady. com/wood. shtml



                    On Thu, 2010-07-01 at 14:01 -0700, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart wrote:
                    >
                    >  
                    >
                    >
                    > Anyone know of exampl...


                  • conradh@efn.org
                    ... Hey, that s not just a 13th Century problem. I grew up surrounded by people doing that! Ulfhedinn
                    Message 9 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
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                      On Thu, July 1, 2010 1:04 pm, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart wrote:
                      > What would this box have been used for?
                      >

                      >
                      >
                      > and the owners place in society would make a difference also.....
                      >
                      > You could live your entire life in debt trying to
                      > maintain the proper 'front' for your rank.....
                      >

                      Hey, that's not just a 13th Century problem. I grew up surrounded by
                      people doing that!

                      Ulfhedinn
                    • conradh@efn.org
                      ... I m looking at several of them in a book a friend picked up for me in England years ago. There are a couple of 6-board chests with no obvious joinery
                      Message 10 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
                      • 0 Attachment
                        On Thu, July 1, 2010 12:59 pm, Bill Schongar (bschonga) wrote:
                        > Hi folks,
                        >
                        >
                        > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                        > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the 13th
                        > century (England or France, if geography matters)?
                        >
                        > I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
                        > dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on what
                        > would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is covered in
                        > leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.
                        >
                        I'm looking at several of them in a book a friend picked up for me in
                        England years ago. There are a couple of 6-board chests with no obvious
                        joinery (without even the usual iron bindings). The photos show the front
                        and top of each--the fastenings don't show but the text says they are
                        pegged. No mention of corner joinery. Both are from 1360 or so, by
                        tree-ring dating of the oak.

                        The "Trial of the Pyx" coffer is much larger, made of quarter-sawn (or
                        riven?_ oak in a sort of foreshadowing of the paneled construction that
                        would become popular a little later. Four heavy vertical planks frame the
                        chest, two at front and two in back. The ends, and the lighter horizontal
                        boards forming the middles of the front and back, are doweled into these
                        big stiles. The end boards are slightly recessed, the three front boards
                        are flush with the stiles. The stiles extend slightly at the bottom,
                        serving as feet. It has an internal till. Two plain iron strap hinges
                        extend clear across the 3-board lid, and hasps are hinged from them that
                        engage a pair of internal locks. (There was originally a third hinge,
                        strap, hasp and lock, but they have gone missing.) The hardware is
                        obviously clinch-nailed, but the text says the rest of the fastenings are
                        dowels. Made around 1300.

                        The only others I see from your period are one that is nearly and one
                        completely iron-bound. They are made of pine and willow, probably to cut
                        the weight which will be bothersome with all that metal. No mention of
                        joinery, which is probably irrelevant because the iron holds it together.
                        (In one, the _wood_ is irrelevant, since the chest is entirely covered
                        with sheet metal and bound with iron straps over that!)

                        So what I found here, at least, is either doweled or held together by its
                        hardware. I know other examples from this era were nailed. If dovetails
                        were known (and they go back to ancient Egypt!), they don't seem to be
                        common yet; they became so by a couple centuries later. The _Standebuch_
                        of Jost Amman (Frankfurt am Main, 1568) shows a number of clearly
                        dovetailed chests.

                        The book is _Early Chests in Wood and Iron_, a pamphlet from the museum of
                        the Public Records Office. (These chests were there because at at least
                        one point in their history, they were used to store documents.) Photos
                        and text by Celia Jenning. HMSO, London, 1974.

                        FWIW, Ulfhedinn
                      • julian wilson
                        ... wrote:   ... the 13th ... MUCH GOOD STUFF SNIPPED FOR BREVITY The _Standebuch_ of Jost Amman (Frankfurt am Main, 1568) shows a number of clearly
                        Message 11 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
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                          --- On Fri, 2/7/10, conradh@... <conradh@...> wrote:



                           

                          On Thu, July 1, 2010 12:59 pm, Bill Schongar (bschonga) wrote:
                          > Hi folks,
                          >
                          >
                          > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                          > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the 13th
                          > century (England or France, if geography matters)?

                          MUCH GOOD STUFF SNIPPED FOR BREVITY

                          The _Standebuch_
                          of Jost Amman (Frankfurt am Main, 1568) shows a number of clearly
                          dovetailed chests.

                          The book is _Early Chests in Wood and Iron_, a pamphlet from the museum of
                          the Public Records Office. (These chests were there because at at least
                          one point in their history, they were used to store documents.) Photos
                          and text by Celia Jenning. HMSO, London, 1974.


                          COMMENT

                          Gentles of the List,
                           the most detailed examination of a number of late-medieval chests is to be found in the 3rd Volume of the Trust's report on the copntents of the salvaged hulk of the "Mary Rose".
                          I know because I was interested in making a replica of the barber Surgeon's Chest.
                          In the archeologist's report on that chest, the Expert makes the definitive statement that it is England's earliest-dated extant chest showing dovetails, and suggests that the artifact must have been made in Continental Europe "where dovetailing was a common woodworking technique, apparently unknown - or at least un-used - in the British Isles in the late medieval period".
                          Further, deponent sayeth not.
                           Matthewe Baker.
                        • Bill Schongar (bschonga)
                          This is a huge help, thanks! And many thanks to everyone else who has provided input as well - I now have two more books to go find and add to the library.
                          Message 12 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
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                            This is a huge help, thanks! And many thanks to everyone else who has provided input as well – I now have two more books to go find and add to the library.

                             

                            -Liam

                             

                             

                            From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of conradh@...
                            Sent: Friday, July 02, 2010 3:58 AM
                            To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: Re: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                             

                             

                            On Thu, July 1, 2010 12:59 pm, Bill Schongar (bschonga) wrote:

                            > Hi folks,
                            >
                            >
                            > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                            > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the 13th
                            > century (England or France, if geography matters)?
                            >
                            > I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
                            > dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on what
                            > would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is covered in
                            > leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.
                            >
                            I'm looking at several of them in a book a friend picked up for me in
                            England years ago. There are a couple of 6-board chests with no obvious
                            joinery (without even the usual iron bindings). The photos show the front
                            and top of each--the fastenings don't show but the text says they are
                            pegged. No mention of corner joinery. Both are from 1360 or so, by
                            tree-ring dating of the oak.

                            The "Trial of the Pyx" coffer is much larger, made of quarter-sawn (or
                            riven?_ oak in a sort of foreshadowing of the paneled construction that
                            would become popular a little later. Four heavy vertical planks frame the
                            chest, two at front and two in back. The ends, and the lighter horizontal
                            boards forming the middles of the front and back, are doweled into these
                            big stiles. The end boards are slightly recessed, the three front boards
                            are flush with the stiles. The stiles extend slightly at the bottom,
                            serving as feet. It has an internal till. Two plain iron strap hinges
                            extend clear across the 3-board lid, and hasps are hinged from them that
                            engage a pair of internal locks. (There was originally a third hinge,
                            strap, hasp and lock, but they have gone missing.) The hardware is
                            obviously clinch-nailed, but the text says the rest of the fastenings are
                            dowels. Made around 1300.

                            The only others I see from your period are one that is nearly and one
                            completely iron-bound. They are made of pine and willow, probably to cut
                            the weight which will be bothersome with all that metal. No mention of
                            joinery, which is probably irrelevant because the iron holds it together.
                            (In one, the _wood_ is irrelevant, since the chest is entirely covered
                            with sheet metal and bound with iron straps over that!)

                            So what I found here, at least, is either doweled or held together by its
                            hardware. I know other examples from this era were nailed. If dovetails
                            were known (and they go back to ancient Egypt!), they don't seem to be
                            common yet; they became so by a couple centuries later. The _Standebuch_
                            of Jost Amman (Frankfurt am Main, 1568) shows a number of clearly
                            dovetailed chests.

                            The book is _Early Chests in Wood and Iron_, a pamphlet from the museum of
                            the Public Records Office. (These chests were there because at at least
                            one point in their history, they were used to store documents.) Photos
                            and text by Celia Jenning. HMSO, London, 1974.

                            FWIW, Ulfhedinn

                          • Gille MacDhnouill
                            One other source are the so-called medieval church chests. There s a reprint of a turn-of-the 20th century survey of English chests that illustrates the
                            Message 13 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
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                              One other source are the so-called medieval "church chests." There's a reprint of a turn-of-the 20th century survey of English chests that illustrates the various joinery (and carving) used on these chests. (http://home.teleport.com/~tcl/cc.htm) Now mind, these are large coffers designed to protect vestments and alms, but you could reasonably extend the methods to smaller boxes. These chests, btw, were mostly thick and wide legs with panels and the floor of the chest let in to groves on the edge and face of the leg. The ends were re-enforced with decorative wooden cross-pieces, and the hinges for the lids were formed from a lid batten and integrated into the back leg, and then almost universally repaired at a later date.

                              Note that some small (and even largish) chests/strongboxes in the 12-14th centuries were made by hollowing out a log segment, and reinforcing the whole thing with iron straps, so there really was no "joinery" per Se.

                              Hope this helps,
                              -----Gille MacDhnouill
                              Working wood in Milton, PA
                              Abhainn Ciach Ghlais, AEthelmearc.

                              --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, "Bill Schongar (bschonga)" <bschonga@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > Hi folks,
                              >
                              > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                              > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
                              > 13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?
                              >
                              > I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
                              > dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
                              > what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
                              > covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.
                              >
                              > Thanks,
                              > -Liam
                              >
                            • AlbionWood
                              The few from that era that I ve seen in museums appeared to have been joined by treenails. Most are also covered with leather and/or gessoed, covering
                              Message 14 of 23 , Jul 2, 2010
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                                The few from that era that I've seen in museums appeared to have been
                                joined by treenails. Most are also covered with leather and/or gessoed,
                                covering whatever joinery is present... so no reason for fancy woodwork.
                                Rabbeting is probably OK, I know I've seen it on some coffers but
                                not sure of the 13th century. (Really need to get my photos databased.)

                                No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been known
                                in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing documentary
                                references, these seem to have fallen completely out of use in Northern
                                Europe from the early MA until the 15th century.

                                Cheers,
                                Tim


                                Bill Schongar (bschonga) wrote:
                                > Hi folks,
                                >
                                > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                                > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the
                                > 13th century (England or France, if geography matters)?
                                >
                                > I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
                                > dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on
                                > what would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is
                                > covered in leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.
                                >
                                > Thanks,
                                > -Liam
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > ------------------------------------
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                              • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
                                Early Chests in Wood and Iron and? I think I missed the other title.... Baron Conal O hAirt / Jim Hart Aude Aliquid Dignum Dare Something Worthy
                                Message 15 of 23 , Jul 3, 2010
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                                  Early Chests in Wood and Iron

                                  and?

                                  I think I missed the other title....
                                   
                                  Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

                                  Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                  ' Dare Something Worthy '



                                  From: Bill Schongar (bschonga) <bschonga@...>
                                  To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                  Sent: Fri, July 2, 2010 11:20:01 AM
                                  Subject: Thanks! RE: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                                   

                                   

                                  This is a huge help, thanks! And many thanks to everyone else who has provided input as well – I now have two more books to go find and add to the library.

                                   

                                  -Liam

                                   

                                   

                                  From: medievalsawdust@ yahoogroups. com [mailto:medievalsaw dust@yahoogroups .com] On Behalf Of conradh@efn. org
                                  Sent: Friday, July 02, 2010 3:58 AM
                                  To: medievalsawdust@ yahoogroups. com
                                  Subject: Re: [MedievalSawdust] Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                                   

                                   

                                  On Thu, July 1, 2010 12:59 pm, Bill Schongar (bschonga) wrote:

                                  > Hi folks,
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > Does anyone have any references or thoughts for what type of joints
                                  > would have most commonly been used on a small box or coffret from the 13th
                                  > century (England or France, if geography matters)?
                                  >
                                  > I was thinking of using dovetails or a rabbetted butt joint with
                                  > dowels, but have been unable to find anything in the books I have on what
                                  > would be appropriate. Since one of the examples I've seen is covered in
                                  > leather, it unfortunately didn't help identify the joints.
                                  >
                                  I'm looking at several of them in a book a friend picked up for me in
                                  England years ago. There are a couple of 6-board chests with no obvious
                                  joinery (without even the usual iron bindings). The photos show the front
                                  and top of each--the fastenings don't show but the text says they are
                                  pegged. No mention of corner joinery. Both are from 1360 or so, by
                                  tree-ring dating of the oak.

                                  The "Trial of the Pyx" coffer is much larger, made of quarter-sawn (or
                                  riven?_ oak in a sort of foreshadowing of the paneled construction that
                                  would become popular a little later. Four heavy vertical planks frame the
                                  chest, two at front and two in back. The ends, and the lighter horizontal
                                  boards forming the middles of the front and back, are doweled into these
                                  big stiles. The end boards are slightly recessed, the three front boards
                                  are flush with the stiles. The stiles extend slightly at the bottom,
                                  serving as feet. It has an internal till. Two plain iron strap hinges
                                  extend clear across the 3-board lid, and hasps are hinged from them that
                                  engage a pair of internal locks. (There was originally a third hinge,
                                  strap, hasp and lock, but they have gone missing.) The hardware is
                                  obviously clinch-nailed, but the text says the rest of the fastenings are
                                  dowels. Made around 1300.

                                  The only others I see from your period are one that is nearly and one
                                  completely iron-bound. They are made of pine and willow, probably to cut
                                  the weight which will be bothersome with all that metal. No mention of
                                  joinery, which is probably irrelevant because the iron holds it together.
                                  (In one, the _wood_ is irrelevant, since the chest is entirely covered
                                  with sheet metal and bound with iron straps over that!)

                                  So what I found here, at least, is either doweled or held together by its
                                  hardware. I know other examples from this era were nailed. If dovetails
                                  were known (and they go back to ancient Egypt!), they don't seem to be
                                  common yet; they became so by a couple centuries later. The _Standebuch_
                                  of Jost Amman (Frankfurt am Main, 1568) shows a number of clearly
                                  dovetailed chests.

                                  The book is _Early Chests in Wood and Iron_, a pamphlet from the museum of
                                  the Public Records Office. (These chests were there because at at least
                                  one point in their history, they were used to store documents.) Photos
                                  and text by Celia Jenning. HMSO, London, 1974.

                                  FWIW, Ulfhedinn


                                • i_odlin@hotmail.com
                                  ... Aaaaaaaaaaaand we re off! The betting windows are now closed, ladies and gentlemen as the horses are reaching the first quarter-mile post... -Iain
                                  Message 16 of 23 , Jul 3, 2010
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                                    --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, AlbionWood <albionwood@...> wrote:
                                    > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                    > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                    > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                    > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                    > century.

                                    Aaaaaaaaaaaand we're off! The betting windows are now closed, ladies and gentlemen as the horses are reaching the first quarter-mile post...

                                    -Iain
                                  • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
                                    Rule 1 - never say never Rule 2 - never say always The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of dovetails in England and France in the 13th
                                    Message 17 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                      Rule 1 - never say never
                                      Rule 2 - never say always

                                      The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of 
                                      dovetails in England and France in the 13th century
                                       
                                      Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

                                      Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                      ' Dare Something Worthy '



                                      From: "i_odlin@..." <i_odlin@...>
                                      To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                      Sent: Sat, July 3, 2010 10:27:54 PM
                                      Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Re: Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                                       

                                      --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, AlbionWood <albionwood@...> wrote:
                                      > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                      > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                      > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                      > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                      > century.

                                      Aaaaaaaaaaaand we're off! The betting windows are now closed, ladies and gentlemen as the horses are reaching the first quarter-mile post...

                                      -Iain


                                    • Eric
                                      I agree with both Conal and Tim. While one should be careful to not deal in absolutes (as Conal said), according to every thing I know about extant examples,
                                      Message 18 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                        I agree with both Conal and Tim. While one should be careful to not deal in absolutes (as Conal said), according to every thing I know about extant examples, dovetails were not a common method of joinery in Northern Europe or Britain during the early portions of the SCA period (as Tim said). Tim also alluded to the fact that rare examples will occasionally crop up that would disprove that statement.

                                        Let me give an example based on our own period. Are flying cars period for late 20th century? Basically not, but during my whole life (since 1960) there have been different people and companies that have produced single or a small number of working flying cars available for sale. I even saw one operate as a small child at an airshow and owned a small, working, plastic model of that design. So, if someone asked five hundred years from now, if flying cars are period for the late 20th century, what would your answer be?

                                        In Service to the Dream,
                                        Eirikr Mjoksiglandi
                                        Ashgrove, Barony of Altavia, Caid


                                        --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart <baronconal@...> wrote:
                                        >
                                        > Rule 1 - never say never
                                        > Rule 2 - never say always
                                        >
                                        > The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of
                                        > dovetails in England and France in the 13th century
                                        > Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart
                                        >
                                        > Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                        > ' Dare Something Worthy '
                                        >
                                        > --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, AlbionWood <albionwood@> wrote:
                                        > > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                        > > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                        > > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                        > > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                        > > century.
                                        >
                                      • Bill McNutt
                                        That it s an outlier, and a reproduction or a piece of utility gear - but not that it s a common practice. Will From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                        Message 19 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                          That it’s an outlier, and a reproduction or a piece of utility gear – but not that it’s a common practice.

                                           

                                          Will

                                           

                                          From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Eric
                                          Sent: Monday, July 05, 2010 11:36 AM
                                          To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                          Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Re: Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                                           

                                           

                                          I agree with both Conal and Tim. While one should be careful to not deal in absolutes (as Conal said), according to every thing I know about extant examples, dovetails were not a common method of joinery in Northern Europe or Britain during the early portions of the SCA period (as Tim said). Tim also alluded to the fact that rare examples will occasionally crop up that would disprove that statement.

                                          Let me give an example based on our own period. Are flying cars period for late 20th century? Basically not, but during my whole life (since 1960) there have been different people and companies that have produced single or a small number of working flying cars available for sale. I even saw one operate as a small child at an airshow and owned a small, working, plastic model of that design. So, if someone asked five hundred years from now, if flying cars are period for the late 20th century, what would your answer be?

                                          In Service to the Dream,
                                          Eirikr Mjoksiglandi
                                          Ashgrove, Barony of Altavia, Caid

                                          --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart <baronconal@...> wrote:

                                          >
                                          > Rule 1 - never say never
                                          > Rule 2 - never say always
                                          >
                                          > The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of
                                          > dovetails in England and France in the 13th century
                                          > Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart
                                          >
                                          > Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                          > ' Dare Something Worthy '
                                          >
                                          > --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com,
                                          AlbionWood <albionwood@> wrote:
                                          > > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                          > > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                          > > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                          > > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                          > > century.
                                          >

                                        • Mike from NH
                                          Ok, here is something I did a little looking at, if you can say your mentor traveled, or learned from a traveler, you might want to think about China,
                                          Message 20 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                            Ok, here is something I did a little looking at, if you can say your mentor traveled, or learned from a traveler, you might want to think about China, according to one reference I found, they've have joints like dovetail joints sence before 1100, here is the link.

                                            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Chinese_wooden_architecture

                                            Yours in Service
                                            Michael De La Coteau
                                            (Michael of the Hill)

                                            --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart <baronconal@...> wrote:
                                            >
                                            > Rule 1 - never say never
                                            > Rule 2 - never say always
                                            >
                                            > The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of
                                            > dovetails in England and France in the 13th century
                                            > Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart
                                            >
                                            > Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                            > ' Dare Something Worthy '
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > ________________________________
                                            > From: "i_odlin@..." <i_odlin@...>
                                            > To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                            > Sent: Sat, July 3, 2010 10:27:54 PM
                                            > Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Re: Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?
                                            >
                                            >
                                            > --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, AlbionWood <albionwood@> wrote:
                                            > > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                            > > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                            > > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                            > > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                            > > century.
                                            >
                                            > Aaaaaaaaaaaand we're off! The betting windows are now closed, ladies and gentlemen as the horses are reaching the first quarter-mile post...
                                            >
                                            > -Iain
                                            >
                                          • Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart
                                            There are also Egyptian dovetails in BC time. ( cannot recall any more specific details off the cuff ) Use them or don t... I don t care, but don t invent
                                            Message 21 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                              There are also Egyptian dovetails in BC time.
                                              ( cannot recall any more specific details off the cuff )



                                              Use them or don't... I don't care, but don't invent 
                                              'kidnapped by gypsies and sold to Asian pirates'
                                              type stories to try to justify them...

                                              The apprenticed to a master that learned in Japan is
                                              kinda cheesy and 'bad form' in my opinion.


                                               
                                              Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart

                                              Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                              ' Dare Something Worthy '



                                              From: Mike from NH <fantasydesigns2002@...>
                                              To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                              Sent: Mon, July 5, 2010 2:58:43 PM
                                              Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Re: Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?

                                               

                                              Ok, here is something I did a little looking at, if you can say your mentor traveled, or learned from a traveler, you might want to think about China, according to one reference I found, they've have joints like dovetail joints sence before 1100, here is the link.

                                              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Chinese_wooden_architecture

                                              Yours in Service
                                              Michael De La Coteau
                                              (Michael of the Hill)

                                              --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, Conal O'hAirt Jim Hart <baronconal@...> wrote:
                                              >
                                              > Rule 1 - never say never
                                              > Rule 2 - never say always
                                              >
                                              > The best you can say is you do not know of any examples of
                                              > dovetails in England and France in the 13th century
                                              > Baron Conal O'hAirt / Jim Hart
                                              >
                                              > Aude Aliquid Dignum
                                              > ' Dare Something Worthy '
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > ________________________________
                                              > From: "i_odlin@..." <i_odlin@...>
                                              > To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                                              > Sent: Sat, July 3, 2010 10:27:54 PM
                                              > Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Re: Type of joinery in 13th C coffret?
                                              >
                                              >
                                              > --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, AlbionWood <albionwood@> wrote:
                                              > > No dovetails for 13th c. England or France. Despite having been
                                              > > known in the Roman period, and despite a few tantalizing
                                              > > documentary references, these seem to have fallen completely out
                                              > > of use in Northern Europe from the early MA until the 15th
                                              > > century.
                                              >
                                              > Aaaaaaaaaaaand we're off! The betting windows are now closed, ladies and gentlemen as the horses are reaching the first quarter-mile post...
                                              >
                                              > -Iain
                                              >


                                            • conradh@efn.org
                                              ... Beautifully said! It s very much an issue for the history of tools, too. In 1505 a Nuremberg engineer named Loffelholz designed and drew in his notebook a
                                              Message 22 of 23 , Jul 5, 2010
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                                                On Mon, July 5, 2010 8:35 am, Eric wrote:
                                                > I agree with both Conal and Tim. While one should be careful to not deal
                                                > in absolutes (as Conal said), according to every thing I know about
                                                > extant examples, dovetails were not a common method of joinery in
                                                > Northern Europe or Britain during the early portions of the SCA period
                                                > (as Tim said). Tim also alluded to the fact that rare examples will
                                                > occasionally crop up that would disprove that statement.
                                                >
                                                > Let me give an example based on our own period. Are flying cars period
                                                > for late 20th century? Basically not, but during my whole life (since
                                                > 1960) there have been different people and companies that have produced
                                                > single or a small number of working flying cars available for sale. I
                                                > even saw one operate as a small child at an airshow and owned a small,
                                                > working, plastic model of that design. So, if someone asked five hundred
                                                > years from now, if flying cars are period for the late 20th century, what
                                                > would your answer be?
                                                >
                                                Beautifully said!

                                                It's very much an issue for the history of tools, too. In 1505 a
                                                Nuremberg engineer named Loffelholz designed and drew in his notebook a
                                                startlingly advanced workbench for his day--it's about two-thirds of the
                                                way to the sort of cabinetmaker's bench that became common in the Germanic
                                                world by 1700 or so. It had a twin-screw face vise and a fully enclosed,
                                                moving-dog tail vise, with multiple recesses for a planing stop that seem
                                                to have also served as stops for the tail vise.

                                                The trouble comes in figuring out whether anything came of this. Was Herr
                                                Loffelholz a secretive dreamer like Leonardo, filling notebooks with
                                                clever ideas that made no difference because he kept them so secret?

                                                Half a century later, bench vises show up in half a dozen shops in the
                                                _Standebuch_, also from Nuremberg. _Not one_ of those vises look like the
                                                1505 examples, and not one is in any sort of woodworker's shop! They're
                                                metal, and all used by high-end specialty metalworkers. They look like
                                                the ancestors of a blacksmith's leg vise, not any sort of Loffelholz
                                                derivative.

                                                Context: The 1500's were a time in which the south German cities led the
                                                world in metal technology, and in particular seemed to be systematically
                                                exploring uses of screw threads. The first bench vises, the first rifled
                                                guns, the first use of a screw press for printing, and the first use of
                                                threaded fasteners, both wood screws and nuts and bolts--all show up first
                                                in the south German cities, in or just before the first half of the
                                                Sixteenth Century.

                                                So it's like the flying cars, or like asking if internal-combustion motor
                                                vehicles are period for the 19th Century. Of course they are--the first
                                                IC driven car (which the Swiss inventor even called a "char") actually ran
                                                down Swiss roads in 1803! All through that century, various inventors
                                                built things that a) could run, and b) were such a pain in the ass to run
                                                that they never really caught on.



                                                Old-school craftsmen could be awfully conservative. My guess would be
                                                that Loffelholz made a bench like his drawing, for his own use, and tried
                                                to interest woodworkers in it. He himself was a user and contributor to
                                                the exciting new screw technology, the one that led to the metalworking
                                                vises we see illustrated sixty years later. But the woodworkers were used
                                                to their old ways of holding the work, and held back for a while.
                                                _Eventually_ they got the idea too, but unfortunately we have this gap in
                                                the record between 1505 and around 1700. By 1700 the traditional
                                                cabinetmakers bench with all the trimmings was widely used across Germany
                                                and had spread to Scandinavia. Obviously, it developed in Germany
                                                sometime during those two centuries, but on the evidence of the Standebuch
                                                it had not caught on as early as 1565.

                                                This sort of conservatism persisted--in the late 1700's Roubo could
                                                illustrate a cabinetmakers bench, but said the only workers in France who
                                                used them were German emigres! Nuremberg and Paris are not that far
                                                apart--during the 1700's they were connected by regular stagecoach
                                                service. Those benches were still not widely used in England for much
                                                later, and many English cabinetmakers to this day still have no use for
                                                tail vises.

                                                So yeah, you can drive an 1801 Trevethick or an 1803 Rivaz to your Regency
                                                event, and document it. But to be fair and honest, along with it consider
                                                developing the persona of a cutting-edge engineer or mad scientist. Much
                                                the same sorts who were demonstrating the flying car you saw. To
                                                (finally!) get back to dovetails, how about a cover story to go with them,
                                                about travel and training in Germany or the like? And perhaps put in some
                                                other distinctively German features in the woodwork?

                                                Ulfhedinn
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