Girder Fork Table Mark II
I decided to make another version of the Girder Fork table. This one has solid “forks” which simplify the joinery and offer new design opportunities. I left a void at the top of the leg to lighten the mass and to give a subtle outside “curve.” It is interesting how the shape changes as you walk around the table or spy it from different parts of the room.
I also changed the apron for this table, that is, it runs the full length of the table. It gives the piece a timeless more familiar feeling.
Lastly I made a new top for the original Girder Fork table, with an asymmetrical arrangement of the boards.
We all need a place to work. A place where you can keep all those things you need to get the work done. It’s great if you have a room for the purpose, but you may have to be more versatile. In this case the workspace is combined with the entertainment center.
The left half of this unit is for work. There are file drawers, large and small storage drawers and a pull-out work surface for a keyboard and mouse. Cables run behind the back of the cabinet to reduce clutter. The right half holds a TV, DVD player and video game systems, as well as shelves for books and discs.
The idea is to have a sliding door that covers one half of this unit depending on which side is in use. The door would have another door in it to allow access to the covered side.
Most of the grain on these walnut cabinets is vertical so I made the drawer fronts run the same way, which makes it feel more modern. I also think its symmetry makes it calming. The work surface also has space inside for the keyboard and more.
So, I had an idea for a leg design inspired by motorcycle girder-forks (yeah, I know this bike doesn’t have them). I was also thinking about the work of Carlo Mollino, a 20th century furniture designer. The leg could be used on tables, case pieces and chairs. The idea wasn’t to mimic the forks exactly but more to subtly tap into the industrial strength of the shapes.
I liked the simplicity and efficiency of the design, but couldn’t resist the temptation to use more traditional joinery. This made for some tricky mitered mortise and tenon joints. I made full scale model of the leg in poplar first to see how to it would work, and look.
I had some large planks of sepele which would yield a 3 foot by 9 foot table. The planks were 18 inches wide and I wanted to show that so I joined them together with bread-board ends. I used the space between the boards as a design feature and aligned the aprons to allow light through. Placing the aprons in the center also keeps them from hitting your knees.
I hand planed the top and left the faceted marks from the planes for a more lively hewn surface. It just seems warmer and friendlier. The finish is linseed oil and shellac.
It’s hard to photograph this table in our little gallery. I really like the stance and angles down bellow.
I don’t mind mixing styles, good design is good design.