Dating furniture by hinges, system for dating country and primitive furniture part one

Tips for Dating Old Pieces Made in America

How to Determine the Age of Antique Furniture

Planing machines were experimented with early in the s. The same problem arose while trying to affix a lock to the back side of a drawer. So, if the hardware is the right style, looks appropriate for the piece and could very well be as old as the piece, the man i'm dating has how can you tell?

This was usually done in laborious fashion with a file. And, realize that those masterpieces are actually few and far between. The concept of the screw is an ancient one.

As knowledge of metallurgy spread and cultures worldwide discovered methods of creating alloys like brass and steel, the sims 4 dating the production of hinges also increased. Many dealers feel that the technological system is superior to the stylistic system. Your best tool is knowledge of what the correct hardware looked like for each style and period in which you have an interest.

Other brass hardware can be an indicator of age as well. Sloan of New York City invented the first machine to mass-produce this item. The Mercer library contains materials on both machine made screws and methods of cutting screws by hand.

Stay up to date on industry news and trends, product announcements and the latest innovations. It was only in the Eastlake period in the s that brass hardware became important again. The Middle Ages Metalwork advanced during the Medieval period, and more and more common people began using hinged-doors in their houses. Starting with the top of the screw, the head, evidence of handwork is abundant. The style of nails changed a dozen times, the hinge changed four times, the screw changed three times, and so did latches and pulls.

How to Date Antique Furniture

The backs of this type of hardware were often left with the impression of the sand while the surfaces were polished. An excellent example of this kind of work is the ornate oval backplate of Hepplewhite pulls of the early s with flags, acorns and leaves embossed on them. This entire hand-done process leaves a multitude of clues on the handmade screw, just waiting for our inspection. The up and down saw leaves marks on wood that look like this.

Antique Furniture Hardware

Recognizing Age and Construction in Antique Furniture

This can mean that they were handcrafted prior to or so. As might be imagined the expense and lack of exactitude in metalworking precluded hinges from being used in everyday household items aside from doors. Furniture Detective by Fred Taylor. The next three saws are bolt saws used by some mills to square both ends of a log before cutting boards. In many cases the same smith who made the nails occasionally turned his craft to the making of screws and thereby left us with personal traces of the maker.

The saw changed, molding styles changed, mortising changed. Cuts and nicks can also leave proof that hand chisels and other tools operated with sheer elbow grease were used to shape woods. Screws are relative newcomers to the production of furniture, primarily because they are so hard to make by hand. They were thick and heavy. Items made after are made using this new screw.

Bank on brass to hardware to determine age

System for Dating Country and Primitive Furniture Part One

Because the new machine made screw was inexpensive, it was readily accepted by cabinetmakers. The tips were blunt in these oldest screws, and each one was unique. The introduction in of the completely machine-made gimlet screw, with a tapered shaft and a pointed tip, dating ukraina marked the beginning of the modern era in screw production. These new machine-made screws also resembled their ancestors in that they were still almost perfectly cylindrical and had a blunt tip. Many other hinged weapons were available to aid in military conflicts.

Antique Furniture

Examine examples of old screws very carefully and they will provide you with a valuable clue to their origin and perhaps to the origin of the furniture in which they are found. Complex hinges could be manufactured faster and at a fraction of the cost of their predecessors. New decorative and corrosion-resistant measures are in place to protect metal hinges from salty air or wear and tear while retaining visual luster.

Original Hardware for Antique Furniture

The shank of a handmade screw does not taper. And the overall shape of the entire screw is cylindrical rather than tapered, as is the case in modern screws. From the s up until the Eastlake period in the s, brass hardware fell out of favor in furniture manufacture and was sparsely used.

Whether it matters is a concern for another day. Metal was expensive and labor-intensive to fabricate, so ancient emperors who wished to show how powerful they were exerted their wealth to purchase metal hinges. Since changing or altering hardware is one of the quickest and cheapest ways of improving the look of an otherwise-bland piece, the pulls are always suspect, especially if they look really good.

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  • The same was true for hinges used under a table leaf.
  • The four saws on the left are waterwheel powered up and down saws.
  • Hinges have been developed to allow doors move both directions, while other hinges have incorporated springs to keep phones and such snapping shut and popping open.
  • These early latches were inlaid into cabinet doors rather than being attached to the surface, as were the later cast iron latches.

When the smith had the length he thought was needed for the job, he simply cut or snipped the threaded shaft. The first butt hinges were made out of cast iron. The stylistic techniques used to date formal furniture such as Chippendale and Hepplewhite simply does not work for American country and primitive furniture. Country furniture does have its styles based predominately on religion and region. Machine made furniture produced largely after will have components that match more perfectly than those made by hand.

Around a machine was introduced that made screws on a lathe but the War of slowed its distribution and development. Local blacksmiths could create wrought iron hinges, as well as other wrought iron tools, at an affordable rate. Its absence could mean the piece was meticulously maintained or that it has just been deeply cleaned or even refinished. More than likely, you will discover that you own a later revival piece although it's awfully fun to dream big when you begin your research. The presence of brass hardware at all also tells a tale.

If the finish was waxed or the brass cleaned while the pull was in place, there will be some residue around the edge of the brass. The methods of working wood also changed during this time. In most cases the head is not perfectly round and is not centered perfectly on the shaft.

Antique Furniture Hardware

Screws give valuable clues when in search of antique furniture origins

However, the upper-class still constructed large castles and palaces with big doors requiring the load-bearing power of large scale hinges. So many products with hinges entered daily life that to list them all would be ludicrous, and yet the expansion was far from over. The same is true each time the piece got waxed. The slot in the top was hand cut by a hacksaw. The slot for the bladed screwdriver was cut with a hacksaw.

The pit saw is a two-man powered saw used in America before to cut logs into boards. The smith heated the square stock and then began the process of pounding out a round shaft. The hand cut slot is seldom perfectly centered on the off-center head. There are many differences between a handmade and a machine-made screw.

Is there an imprint in the finish caused by the sharp edge of another piece? One of the most overlooked and least understood clues in establishing the date and authenticity of older and antique furniture is the story that screws can tell about the history of a piece. The hinge on the right is a modern hinge.

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This portion of the shaft is almost never totally round or totally smooth. The point of the handmade screw is blunt. Today the discussion is just on determining the originality of hardware.

  1. Carefully examine the wood and the finish revealed when the brass is gone.
  2. In effect a screw is a ramp wrapped around a column.
  3. Thomas Industry Update Stay up to date on industry news and trends, product announcements and the latest innovations.
  4. Another innovation of the Federal period was the reversing of the bail the handle.
  5. This post started as a square rod.

Evolution of the Hinge

Dealers who specialize in country and primitive furniture have depended on the above methods plus the study of nails for dating their antiques. The Dating of Old Houses, a paper prepared by Dr. Moving into the s, maple and cherry showed up in fine furniture manufacture quite often.

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