Do these drawers make my arsedine* look big?

Today I am in receipt of the brasses for the walnut side table I’m making.

The newly arrived brasses.

The handles were ordered from Optimum Brasses and quality wise, they are virtually useable as is, with just a few casting blemishes.

The first thing I do when I receive new brasses is to place them in position on the piece of furniture in order to assess them. If I wasn’t copying an extant side table – as in this instance – I would have said these handles were a tad large and I’d have chosen something more petite. However, as I am attempting to make a copy of this table, I aim to replicate the brasses as best as possible and these handles are the best match I could come up with – short of making them myself.

Trying a backplate for size on the top drawer front.

Comparing the new backplates to the backplates in the original image, it appears the match isn’t perfect; the upper and lower central protuberances are more exaggerated on the new ones.

Comparison of original and new backplates.

Being the aristarch that I am, I just can’t mount the brasses onto the drawers as they are without some fettling – so out with the files and scrapers and then to the buffing wheel!

Examples of the dags and casting flashes also to be removed.

Before finally subjecting the brasses to the Bucket of Wrath, I’ll drill some post holes in a mock drawer front and mount the handles on it so I can correct any misalignment issues and check their operation.

The bail pivots will require a little tweaking.

* An alloy of copper and zinc (such as brass).
Clive Edwards, Encyclopedia of Furniture Materials, Trades and Techniques, Ashgate Publishing, 2001, p. 11.

About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
This entry was posted in Cabinet Fittings, Tables and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Do these drawers make my arsedine* look big?

  1. Jim B says:


    I suggest you trim them down a bit, still much less work than making yourself and you can match the original more closely which is your stated objective. The originals look a bit big as you said and these are even bigger.


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