|Project by Don Butler||posted 03-02-2009 05:41 PM||6739 views||2 times favorited||26 comments|
Either Sears, Roebuck & Co. or Montgomery Ward had this piece built in South Bend, IN just after the turn of the 20th century. The page shown in the Sears catalog is from the 1904 edition. I believe this is the Motgomery Ward cabinet.
The cabinet was seriously abused by all the former owners and was heavily coated with nine coats of badly applied paint of various colors. I gather the first finish was a thinly applied, colored varnish over the maple/poplar wood used to make it. The joinery was decently done but no glue or screws were used, not even where dowels were used and the joints at the corners and dado joints were NAILED! Seriously!
Much of the wood was worn out, especially the drawer sides where they slid against the cabinetry. Some parts had to be replaced with carefully copied woodwork.
The original work top was gone. In its place was poplar planks nailed onto the casework and covered with old, oil based linoleum.
Since my wife wanted a French Country theme in the kitchen, and since the woodwork in the cabinet was so dinged and dented, we painted it a buttery yellow with an antique looking blue trim. I added some scrollwork fancies on the sides of the topper because I felt it was too plain.
The ugly work top replacement was tossed out and a beautiful, custom made piece of granite was used instead.
One of the legs was unusable and a new one was made and then new ends were made for all four of them. They were designed to fit plastic low friction slider pads and made wider to spread the, now heavier, weight of the unit.
New die cast, nickle plated hinges were installed on the doors.
Low profile electrical receptacles were installed in the back panel.
It took most of a Summer and Autumn to do the work.
I’m happy with it and, most importantly, She Who Buys Me Tools is pleased.
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