Tuesday, September 28, 2010

On a smaller scale...

So, I think that one of the worst lagging parts of the 80s for me is the notion that ideas have to be original. It's gotten into my head enough that there are times when I almost discount an idea, just because I've seen or heard of it before.

Today was a good example of that. I got into the shop and I was sketching the slabs and brainstorming, and trying to think of just what kind of base to use, etc. And then it occurred to me that I might make a scale model.

I almost didn't. I've seen other furniture builders make them, and it seems cute, but somehow not quite my thing. But as I was sketching, I realized very quickly that a 2 dimensional sketch just isn't the same thing, and it won't give me a feel for how the proportions are going to play out when I build the thing. I love the table I made for our living room, for example, but I think if I had to do it over again, I might move the legs inwards, just by an inch or two.

Anyway, I took some rough measurements of the table, and I got out the drawing for the slab table form last July to get an idea of what kind of dimensions I was dealing with. Then I divided everything by eight, ran the math, and went to make miniature parts.

The results are pretty cool. It's a neat design. But I also noticed a few other things. I like the idea of using these proportions, but for a larger project, like a trestle table for the dining room. I like using the trestles with the stretcher on top. But I also like it with the stretcher on the bottom. And while the idea was to make a slab table for a live edge piece of wood, the proportions look good with a squared off plank, too.

Since the point, for me, was to play with proportions, and not to execute the joinery in miniature, I made the base so that the trestles could slide along the stretcher. It was a huge help, and I noticed pretty quickly that too close to the ends and too close to each other are pretty easily spotted. The perfect spacing is going to be less obvious, but I can take pictures and compare.

I had other ideas once the proportions were out of my head. I worked out the joinery a year and a half ago, but I had a few new ideas for usage this afternoon, to make a larger table, with 4 legs, instead of 2 trestles, but that's another plan for another project, and I still have to get through these ones.

When the new ideas come out, I know I'm in a good place.

More soon.

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