Friday, April 25, 2008

Trestle Table

I have a large, colonial-style trestle table. It's hardly an antique, having been made recently in Malaysia, but I think it's rather nice. With a large table top and channels, it has plenty of room for computer periperals and tends to hold things in place. And its heavy weight keeps it still. The only drawback is that, having been manufactured in an environment of consistently high heat and humidity, the climatic variations of New England cause quite a bit of visible wood movement. The table top, in particular, is slightly bowed in several spots. It lacks breadboards at the ends, and the fact that the top was laminated out of many different sized blocks of wood doesn't seem to make it any more stable. But I love it nonetheless.

The other day, while moving the table into the southeast chamber, the stretcher came loose from the legs. Both insert nuts at each end of the stretcher had pulled out from the wood. I got two larger connectors (with significantly larger insert nuts), tapped the nuts in along with some wood glue, and after the glue set up, drew the legs and stretcher back together. A once-over with some lemon oil and the table was good to go.

Above left: One of the original connectors and its replacement. Above right: I chamfered the face holes on each leg to accommodate the larger connector heads.

Above: New connectors in place and ready for service again.

Above: When combined with a hardwood stool, my trestle table makes for a highly efficient work area that's downright medieval in its austerity! ;-)


AlexandraFunFit said...

"Medieval in its austerity"??? I have a BA in medieval studies, and they weren't all austere. Just the poor old serfs. The nobles had all kinds of stuff, especially thick rugs, which they put on the walls as insulation. Maybe your windows could use some winter rugs!

John Poole said...


Alas, I am but a poor surf in my self-imposed austerity! We actually do have winter rugs for the windows. See this article (and feel free to comment, please!).

As a Medievalist, you might find it interesting to know that my home is SO old, it's general form of construction is sometimes regarded as being more medieval ("post-medieval") than it is colonial.

Thanks for commenting!
- John

AlexandraFunFit said...

You are not a surf; you are a serf. There is a difference. One requires water, the other a muddy field and mistreatment by the lord of the manor. But here's a medieval joke for you, but first you must know that Wat Tyler led a peasant rebellion in the 13th century (or 14th - can't recall) to protest the poor treatment by the lords.
Okay. What do you call the Peasant's Uprising?
Answer: Serfs Up

Maybe only medieval studies majors find that funny....

John Poole said...

Indeed. I guess you had to be there. Literally! Hahaha! :-D