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  • Handle Choices If any question is guaranteed to stump us at Whitechapel Ltd it is "What kind of handle do you think I ought to use on my …..". While we are perhaps sometimes over willing to tell a customer our own likes and dislikes I hope it is apparent that our choices are less valid than your own, you can look at your furniture, we can't. In an effort to make the choosing easier all photos in our catalog are scaled 100% so at least you won't have to imagine size as well as style. If you are ...
  • All our Code 1 castors are English made and solid brass. Due to advances in material and manufacturing they are substantially stronger than the period originals. We are often asked for a load bearing rating on these castors. This rating would be expected of a modern castor, but it is not relevant to period castors. Any of our castors could bear loads far greater than they are ever likely to encounter. More important than load rating is mobility. A small castor under a heavy load is more likely to make...
  • A full mortise lock is embedded into a deep mortise cut into the edge of the door or drawer. The exposed "selvedge" and a keyhole are all that is visible of this type of lock. Unless some unusual consideration comes into play these locks are generally centered in the thickness of the material. Because the lock is normally placed in the middle of the material thickness the choice of escutcheon and the method of its attachment will be a consideration. Thread escutcheons rely on a viable thickness for s...
  • Yesterday The need to secure precious objects is so innate to humans and many other animals that it is not surprising the earliest locks appear as long ago as 4000 years. The oldest known locks employed a pin tumbler mechanism much like that of our modern "Yale" lock but on a far larger scale. They have been found in cultures as diverse as those of Egypt, Japan and Norway. The Romans can be credited with the invention of the metal lock and in fact developed the "warded lock" which uses the familiar ske...
  • Beds are large cumbersome furnishing and since the beginning have been constructed with "Some assembly required" as a given. A typical bed breaks down at minimum into headboard, footboard and bed rails. A variety of fittings are available to join these parts together, some are more satisfactory than others. Bed Bolts Bed bolts are usually 6" or 7" long bolts 3/8" diameter with a square drive head and integral washer. They are supplied with a square or rectangular nut. This type of bed fastener was...
  • Every woodworker will from time to time have call for a stay of some kind. Stays of one sort or another are used to hold chest and box lids from falling backward and sometimes forwards. They can be used to support desk writing surfaces, to hold drafting tables at a suitable working angle and then allow them to fold flat for storage. Windows can held open with a variety of types depending on application. Countless other situations will crop up. Choosing the right stay and figuring out how to install it p...
  • Drop Leaf Rule Joint While at first glance the rule joint seems simple, the realities of this joint can be frustratingly troublesome. A first attempt will often result in a joint that scrapes and binds or leaves unsightly gaps. To get it right the first time requires both an understanding and application of the geometry at work. These days the majority of us will cut the rule joint profiles with a router. Though this tool can quickly produce a very accurate pair of matching cuts, it can just a...
  • Catches come in a bewildering assortment of function and design. In very general terms a catch is any device whose purpose is to hold two or more components together while allowing for easy release. Quite what distinguishes a catch from a latch is unclear to me so we will group them together for the sake of this guide. Locks are dealt with elsewhere and are considered distinct from catches. Door Catches Door catches can either be mounted to show on the outside of the door or the can be mo...