The Completed Chair
Recently I restored and repaired a Walnut Eastlake Chair. I put a date of 1875 on this chair but in truth chairs like this were made throughout the United States for most of the second half of the 19th century. It is probably from the fourth quarter of that century and has design characteristics that are associated with the American form of the Eastlake Movement. A search of the label Eastlake on this blog will shed more light on that movement.
I have written about and repaired chairs like this in the past but I thought this one was interesting especially because of the repair. The seat is made from hand woven cane which is woven into a Walnut seat frame. The left side of the frame (facing) had broken along the perforations made for the cane to pass through, which are the weakest part of the frame. The common repair for this is to glue the broken piece on and screw it as well between the perforations.
This repair works for the short term but more often than not I have seen it fail again after a few years. I decided to try another approach which I have outlined below. But first, a few photos of the chair as it came into the shop.
This next photo shows the patch with the inner curve cut to match the inside of the original. I was also able to copy the spacing for the perforations onto the new wood while the two sections were adhered with tape.