This Victorian Bench was made as my final project of college to compete in the young craftsman at the South of England show. The brief of the project was to have an element of the south down in the design.
When designing the bench, the idea of having a straight bench didn’t feel challenging enough for a final project, this starts the ideas and drawing and within a week I had the final design drawn up to scale and ready to start making. When making the back of the bench I cold bent all the parts in a fly press instead of heating them up for two reasons. first was hot steel wouldn’t bend evenly meaning the flow of the bench wouldn’t match the drawing, secondly handling the sleet thought the fly press would involve two people using tongs and gloves just to make sure of no warping in the bars.
The main tools used to create the bench were the fly press used to create all the shapes that you see on the Victorian bench from top to bottom. The second was the pillar drill saving time being able to drill over 100 holes with ease and precision making the final peace clean with even spacings and centred holes. lastly, is the power hammer making light work of all forging, creating all six feet by drawing down a bar of 40 square tapping into 20 square and producing the armrests which flowed into the legs.
Final assembly of the Victorian bench was done in three parts, back, seat and sides. The reason behind it is because there was a large number of rivets which held the bench together and the size and weight of the bench would involve a lot of moving and turning so I minimized that happening using this process. Though the process of the final assembly I realized riveting certain pieces would involve bending and making tools so its possible to put together which I should had realized in the design process.
Overall, the project was a great success and was well received at the South of England show. This is one of my most proud pieces and I look forward to creating more pieces like this in the future.
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