You have seen us post this table before however, you don’t know the story behind the design of this wonderful piece of family history. We are going to take you through how we obtained the wood, processed it, and built a piece of history for this family to keep for years to come.
The hard birch wood, that created this furniture piece, came from the customers 150-year-old family farm in Southern Illinois. The customers had the wood transferred to our Naperville location to start the design process.
The customer wanted a large dining table made from the barn wood that would fit six people. However, they had a limited amount of space in their home for the table. They also had heating vents and windows to contend with as well. We sat down and drew out the plans for the table with the customer.
We then started the process by receiving the accurate measurements for the space and then prepping the wood for processing. Prepping the wood consisted of us removing all the cut nails from the wood and processing the raw lumber.
For those of you not familiar with cut nails they are the nails that were most commonly used in the 19th century for building homes. Cut nails are sheared by machine from steel plate, producing a nail with a distinctive wedge shape that ends in a blunt point. It is this particular profile that gives the nail its authenticity. Cut on all sides to produce four edges, they’re often called “square nails.”
We wanted to save the nails in order to use later on down the road in order to complete the production of the table.
Once all the pieces of wood were treated and processed we then had the task of assembling the pieces. Since we were using different sizes of wood and due to the age of the wood we had some buckling issues once we glued the pieces together. In order to compensate for this and make the table top flat we ended up cutting the table down the middle and removing sections of wood that were causing the table to be uneven.
We then used pins to lock in the base legs to the table. When we put the base on the table we had to readjust the legs in order to compensate for people’s legs. We didn’t want people to be straddling around the base of the table as they sat down. Some readjustments were made and the pins were placed to secure the base to solve this issue.
In order to complete the table instead of using putty to fill in cracks or spots where we initially removed the cut nails we simply put the cut nails that were saved back into the table. The entire process from receiving the wood to completion took about 30-40 hours. The end result a piece of furniture that this family can be proud of and can gather around for years to come.
If you want to preserve your family history by creating a custom furniture piece for your family to enjoy please contact us and start the design process today.