Throughout the designing and making of this bench, I’ve used trees prepared for use, but not used, in other furniture projects. The “ox-bow” is a tree art motif I identified many years ago, and the ones in these photos were drawknifed and sanded long ago. I brought a selection of them up from the workshop. I’ll use two as stretchers, one between the two front legs and one between the two back legs.
The design of this bench is experimental and evolving step-by-step. I have a basic idea of adding wide slab armrests to the top of the front posts, which are much longer at this stage than they will be when I start working on the arm rests. For now, the challenge is tightly fitting each leg into a cut-out in the bench seat.
This post is about (1) attaching an arched support to stiffen the backrest, (2) connecting the backrest to the bench seat in a way that allows the backrest and seat to be disassembled, and (3) the start of attaching the front legs. (My captions for the photos are not as detailed and informative as they could be.)
I have two more posts in draft status that I’ll publish asap (the date today is May 26, 2013).
April 17, 2013
For personal and family reasons and priorities, I haven’t worked much on the bench for the past month. I had originally planned (!) to have it finished by the end of April, but since that was a self-imposed time frame, I’ve relaxed my schedule. And, besides, the making of tree art is only one of my creative practices ….
I’m also continuing with my relaxed standards for the quality of these posts, especially in literary terms.
Because of the size of the bench, and the crowded condition of my workshop, I decided to bring the bench up to our attached greenhouse. As long as it’s sunny, the unfinished greenhouse is a comfortable, roomy, and well-lighted workspace. And the deck serves as a good workbench.
Here are photos of my latest efforts to combine the back rest with the seat, and to add two legs:
The making of the bench seat with 8 pieces of 2″ thick planks.
Perhaps, since tree art is a collaboration with Nature, I tend to abhor straight lines (and square corners, etc.). In the making of edge to edge butt joints, I like the mate cut, waney edge joints as a design detail.
Post Twenty-six was getting too lengthy, probably too many photos and not enough text. I’ve been saving two posts as drafts rather than publishing them. I’m thinking now that it doesn’t matter all that much if I go ahead and publish them. Just as tree art is not fine woodworking, my writing in these posts is not fine literature.