When a repair to a damaged piece has been done well, a casual observer would never know, even a more studious person should be challenged to discern that work has been done. In many cases the extent of the damage that has been repaired would shock even that more studious person. All that is easy to say, but on this page we offer evidence!
The Egyptianesque and Classical motifs intertwined in the designs of Duncan Phyfe in the late 1700s and early 1800s had a popular revival in the 1930s and 1940s and were the most widely distributed style of that era. This chair is a very typical example of that revival. The large numbers of these still in circulation do a lot to keep businesses like ours occupied! As in this example, these items come to us most typically needing both regluing and work on the finish. The gluing need here was minimal, but the finish needed more attention. We didn't need to strip this but were able to successfully restore the existing finish with some special attention to the top right corner of the back rail.
We can often repair broken rockers, however, sometimes they are too badly damaged, sometimes the customer simply wants a new rocker, sometimes we need to replace a poorly made prior replacement. Whatever the reason, here is an example of a replacement rocker. Matching the finish is an important and difficult part of the job. Note in the lower photo the dowel pins we also replaced where the legs are attached to the rocker.
If you look carefully on the left side of this picture you can see that the stretcher between the front and back legs is broken and clearly the cross bars needed regluing. It shouldn't take any special discernment to realize that this rocker has already had its finish removed.
We turned a new stretcher to replace the broken one, reglued all the joints below the seat and have finished the entire chair.
The original seat was a pressed leather seat that was worn out. We dyed and attached this replacement seat. Seats of this type were very popular in the early 20th century.
The slender, closely spaced spindles on the back and under the arms are very appealing but make this a very difficult and therefore expensive job. Imagine sanding, staining and finishing evenly in all those tight spaces!
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Now that you have seen what we have done for others, what can we do for you? CONTACTING AND FINDING US
Not really sure what happened to this chair before it came to us. Some child thinking it was a trampoline? A crowning blow? A stress test? Target practice by a NFL QB? Intentional desecration by a Nazi hating conspiracy theorist? Just a few of our guesses; what is yours?
What requires no speculation is the extent to which we went ensuring that this chair could be returned to its intended use. The customer did not want to pay for the necessary touch-up, so no doubt this chair was also discretely placed against a wall.
Somehow the inside half of this bed leg got torn off. A couple of the parts that had broken off were brought in with it, but the bottom section was entirely missing.
Here we are clamping the broken parts back in place, plus, the white wood you can see at the base of the leg is new wood we were gluing in place of the missing section.
Here is the leg after repair, scrape marks along the glue lines between the original sections glued back in place. Once again, this customer opted to have a functional bed and not to worry about how a rarely seen part of the bed might look.
We thought we had seen everything when this came in. A shelf that looked substantial but was as cheaply made as can be imagined! Why even bother repairing it? Because that was still less expensive than building a new shelf out of durable materials.
LEFT: The areas on the back and arms of this chair display normal wear.. Reproducing a solid black is not simple, because there is not just one black to choose from. Replacing the worn black without obscuring any of the gold decal also make this a challenge.
RIGHT: This chair took a tumble from the back of a pick up. As a result it sustained a broken left arm and extensive abrasions on both arms and shoulders. The first step was to re-glue the arm, then fill the many voids, finally to touch it up to look great again!
Not too hard to discern what happened here and what we did. Many chairs with back splats like this are made with plywood. The reason for that choice would be added strength due to the 90° rotation of the grain in each layer. Theoretically that should be stronger. However, there is very little that can prevent breakage when a sharp blow occurs.
This glockenspiel is owned by a local university. The front corner had encountered something that won the battle of hardness. We removed the damaged wood, glued a fresh piece back in place and touched it up to blend with the surrounding finish. You can see that we also carefully masked any points where sanding dust (ubiquitous in a shop) could enter the instrument.