Andy Dingley (or anyone): Q on mission furniture

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Keith Carlson notes:

Well, that's what counts. And red oak is preferred by many over white oak for appearance. Rays are sometimes even bolder when quartersawn. I've got some parts of my staircase in this house in red oak with rays you wouldn't believe.
It does not fume well, by all reports. I'm not up for trying fuming until we're back in a permanent location, so can't comment. I'll try both and some others when that happens.
Charlie Self
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On Sat, 27 Dec 2003 03:35:09 GMT, "Keith Carlson"

I'm an afficionado but haven't yet built any. Next year, though!

Traditional is white oak, and they typically used wider boards back then because they were available. I'll guess that the width is from 8/4 thickness lumber which was available to them, cut for the qsawn grain.

Let's hope not. That belongs in the driveway or garage.

I haven't seen anything that narrow in any picture from the twenty or so books I've read on A&C furniture.
The 1909-1912 copy of Popular Mechanics' "Mission Furniture: How To Make It" shows a parts list for the library table top as "1 top, 1-1/8 by 30 by 42 in., S4S". For the tabouret top, "from the planing mill, secure one piece 7/8 in. thick and 17 in. square", so really wide qsawn oak was readily available back then. (Gawd, if only that were still true!)
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QS WO moves about half as much as plain sawn stock, so Michael's Furniture (in-house Resto domestic manufacturer) is using plain-sawn 8/4 flipped 90 degrees for both lower cost and reducing warranty claims due to wood movement.
Even if I could find 17" wide QS white oak, I doubt more than a 6-7 inch section would be true QS stock, so narrower pieces - five to eight inches wide - are pretty much the limit these days. My library table is about the same size as the Resto desk, and uses 5 sticks for the 28 x 60 top. Over the last year, it's been pretty stable, losing just under a 1/4" in width between seasonal extremes.
FYI - Resto is a great place to get the SWMBO interested in A&C stuff. Although the designs are derivative, the scale is about right and seeing these pieces in the flesh really helps. My cost of about $500 for the library table versus $1800 for Resto's was also a selling point (although the hand-hammered pulls I'd like to put on would jack things up by another $240).
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