Vidar Chairs (Under Construction)

The following are photos taken of the chairs while under construction. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to document this project as well as I would have liked, but I did manage to take a few pictures along the way...

vidar-chair-construction-07.jpg
Glue-up of one of the lumbar rails. The lumbar rail for each chairs consists of 5 - 1/8" laminates, sawn from a single piece, then glued back together in the correct sequence. After clamping, the piece will "spring back" a little, but will still be remarkably strong.

vidar-chair-construction-08.jpg
Back-Assemblies of each chair, after glue-up. The lumbar rail (from the above picture) is the top-most horizontal member of each chair. At this point all glued-up pieces have been completely shaped and final-sanded.

vidar-chair-construction-09.jpg
Dry-fitting the front leg-assembly to the back leg-assembly. The front legs and front rails are glued together, but the upper- and lower-side rails need to be adjusted to give the chair the proper "stance."

vidar-chair-construction-10.jpgTest-fitting the crest-rails to the chairs. Each rail was sawn and shaped from a 3"-square block, mortised, doweled, then final-shaped before fit-up.

vidar-chair-construction-11.jpg
Gluing up one of the back assemblies. This was by far the hardest part of the entire project. Each back-splat had to be sawn and shaped before they could be joined to the lumbar and crest rails, and all six joints (two each for the back splats, one for each leg) had to "land" at the same time. It took a week to get the first back-assembly glued up. Now on to the next chair, and after that...maybe a beer or two.

vidar-chair-construction-12.jpg Chair with glued-up back assembly. Now on to the arms...

vidar-chair-construction-13.jpgBoth chairs with arms dry-fitted to the back legs. The arms are left oversize until now because I wasn't sure how much shorter they would get while fitting those joints (answer: much, much shorter...)

vidar-chair-construction-14.jpg
Arms being glued in to the second chair. The arms themselves will still require some shaping after glue-up.

vidar-chair-construction-15.jpg
Shown here is the original Vidar chair, built by none other than Vidar Malmsten himself. The chair belongs to Mr. Krenov, who insisted I take it back to the shop (from his kitchen!) to have a look at it and take notes. Take notes on Krenov's kitchen chair! WHAT? To an unabashed wood-nerd like myself, this is just about the coolest thing possible, under any circumstance. The best I can do is try to catch some of the excellent vibes radiating from it, and for for God's sake, not scratch it.

vidar-chair-construction-16.jpgOne of the chairs, glued up, shaped, sanded, and (almost) finished. The Liberon Oil seems to go on pretty easy - the good news is that it is thin, and therefor easy to wipe on and wipe off, and flows into corners well. The bad news is that it will end up taking five or six coats to get any kind of "build" to the finish.

vidar-chair-construction-17.jpg
Starting to weave the Danish cord seat. The front part of the weave must be "packed out" to account for the trapezoidal shape of the seat.
vidar-chair-construction-18.jpgAlmost finished packing out the front of the seat. The next stage will be the "Figure-Eight," which will loop around all four sides of the seat. After that, the "Bridge" (the crease you see towards the back of woven seats), which is woven in a figure-eight from front to back.
vidar-chair-construction-19.jpgThe last wrap. Almost there...
vidar-chair-construction-20.jpgThe very, very last step: Masking off the entire chair with paper, and Scotch-Guarding the Danish cord. This should protect the seat from dirt and dust, at least for a little while.

klggvdrchrpr.jpg
Finished! Total working time: 700 hours.