Router jig makes easy work of shaping round and curved parts
Synopsis: This reproduction of a 160-year-old French Regency pedestal table has many interesting details, not to mention a few challenges. Crafted of walnut, each piece is either curved or has a compound angle. Custom cabinet maker John Zeitoun designed a few jigs to make construction easier. He shaped the curved parts on the triangular base with a router attached to a trammel jig. A circle cutter on the drill press was used to shape a stack of disks into elegant feet, with no need for a lathe. And the six-sided tapered column, for which each segment has compound beveled edges, was cut on the tablesaw. A threaded steel rod feeds through each section of the table, holding it together.
I love flipping through books of antique furniture and looking over pieces at garage sales, and I jump at the challenge of reproducing an antique in my shop. Such was the case when a client showed me a picture of a 160-year-old French Regency pedestal table from the book The Furniture of Old Ontario (Macmillan, 1973) and asked if I could make it for him.
The picture didn’t explain construction techniques, but using generally accepted proportions, as well as considering the space it was to occupy, I was able to reproduce the table. According to the book, the original table had a hardwood base with bird’s-eye maple veneer and a pine tabletop. But I chose to make mine out of walnut.
Work from the bottom up
The table offers a few challenges. For one, each piece either is curved or has a compound angle. I was able to simplify the construction process by breaking it down into small steps and by using a few jigs.
Prepare a trammel jig— The curved parts that make up the triangular base of the…
Get the Full-Size Plan
CAD-drawn plans and a cutlist for this project are available in the Fine Woodworking store.