Small but intricate tableThis Seymour piece has tricky side joints, tambour doors, and lots of fun details.
I’m working on another Seymour piece, circa 1800 – a Nightstand or Bedside Table. The original piece is at Winterthur. You can find a description, overall dimensions, and photo in the book The Furniture Masterworks of John & Thomas Seymour by Robert D. Mussey Jr. Here is my SketchUp model of the piece.
The exploded view shows the numerous parts required. Note the marble top.
One of the “intricate” details involves joinery of the side pieces. Here is a top view of the “V-joint” as the side connects to the legs. I shaped a scraper blade to route out that V socket. I glued the top part of the joint only, as the sides have front-to-back grain direction and I do not want side cracks and splits due to expansion/contraction.
Many Seymour pieces have tambour doors, and this is just another example.
This is a top view showing the tambour slats as they follow the groove turn in the front rail and tambour plate. Also, you can see the position of the two pilasters. The right-hand pilaster is fixed and glued, and its left edge must be shaped to allow the passage of the tambour slats. The left-hand pilaster is the handle connected to the tambour and serves as the handle for opening and closing.
There are a total of 51 mahogany slats making up the tambour. There are two types of slats – one type has a veneer of satinwood along with a 1/16 x 1/16-in. holly stringing. The other type is plain mahogany with an ebony stringing.
I made a frame that assists in arranging the slats and attaching a canvas backing. Hot hide glue is used to stick the canvas. This photo shows the front view of the slats, however when gluing, these slats are reversed so that the back of the slats are facing up.
Here is a video testing the tambour taped with a backing of duct tape.