A George II Ash Bureau – Part Eight

The last report on this bureau was on the 4th of October 2013. In the interim Virginia and I have moved lock, stock and barrel to the country where I have temporarily set up shop in, what was formerly the tack room behind the stables.

The bureau’s interior drawers are made from ash and quartersawn oak (fig. 1).


Fig.1. Oak lined interior drawer.

The removable tabernacle comprises a small cupboard with a solid ash door flanked by turned, split columns (fig. 2).


Fig. 2. Drawers and tabernacle installed.

The tabernacle is retained by an ash spring (attached to the underside of the carcase top) which can be depressed via a finger hole in the top of the cupboard. With the tabernacle removed, access is gained to two secret (well, they were) letter boxes which occupy the voids behind the split columns (fig. 3).


Fig. 3. Spring catch release hole and letter boxes.


Fig. 4. The cabinetwork completed.

We are currently experiencing temperatures of 42°C (108°F) with humidity plummeting from 88% to 14%. As a result the bureau is creaking and moving quite significantly, so I will postpone the finishing process until the weather settles down.

Jack Plane

About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
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17 Responses to A George II Ash Bureau – Part Eight

  1. Joe M says:

    Well, it’s good to hear your’e back in the saddle, I mean shop. As always your posts are an inspiration to the rest of us mere mortals. The bureau looks beautiful.


  2. LD says:

    It would be nice to see the Lemon Tree Studio re-established; I don’t think there was a woodworking shop quite like it, anywhere.


    • Jack Plane says:

      Though it won’t take many years to produce fruit-bearing citrus trees here (a number have already been planted), unfortunately they are not in the proximity of the workshop. The ‘Tack Room’ will have to suffice until the new sheds are built, when I may plant further lemons nearby.

      Thanks everyone for all the kind words.



  3. Paul B says:

    Thanks for getting back to work! I hope you put out a book some day. You have a pretty unique approach.


  4. Very nice work on the drawers and central compartment, I must say Mr Jack Plane.
    I am currently building a desk top organizer with several drawers, and I may have to attempt something similar to your most excellent compartment with hidden letter boxes.
    I hope your new digs are working out to your liking.
    And as always, thank you for sharing your talent.


  5. Jim Pallas says:

    Your work and the knowledge concerning the historical part of these pieces is quite amazing. I still can not figure out why I like this particular bureau so much. As I said before it just appears right. Nicely done and waiting to see the shine on it. You can show more of the views from your shop, not all of us get to retire to the country. What’s next? A chair for the bureau so I’ll know how to build the set. Thank you for sharing your work and expertise.


  6. It’s looking really nice, your work is very fine
    and the location of your workshop is intruiging!


  7. Jim Pallas says:

    Beautiful area. Looks a lot like New Mexico, where I spent 25 years, with the mountains in the background. Lucky dog, and I don’t mean Wellard. Enjoy your new place.


  8. visitinghousesandgardens says:

    Hot! Raining over here. While I doubt you see my despair via twitter, what do make of sand sealer?


  9. Brian Lowery says:

    The outdoor pictures were great. Any chance we could see what your workshop looks like?


  10. Pingback: Picture This CXII | Pegs and 'Tails

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