A screw is any shaft with a corkscrew-shaped groove formed on its surface. Screws are used to fasten two objects together. A screwdriver is a tool for driving turning screws; screwdrivers have a tip that fits into the head of a screw. Around the first century CE, screw-shaped tools became common, however, historians do not know who invented the first. Early screws were made from wood and were used in wine presses, olive oil presses, and for pressing clothes. Metal screws and nuts used to fasten two objects together first appeared in the fifteenth century. In , English instrument maker, Jesse Ramsden - invented the first satisfactory screw-cutting lathe, and went on to inspire other inventors.
The slot still had to be cut by hand with a hacksaw. Country furniture made with these screws can easily be dated to the ten-year period The Mercer library contains materials on both machine made screws and methods of cutting screws by hand. Incast iron latches became available to cabinetmakers. After the introduction of the cast iron latch, most cabinetmakers used this new feature in place of the little wooden turnstile that had been used for centuries.
In the South and Midwest, hand-cast brass latches were in use before These early latches were inlaid into cabinet doors rather than being attached to the surface, as were the later cast iron latches. Dealers who specialize in country and primitive furniture have depended on the above methods plus the study of nails for dating their antiques.
How to Determine the Age of Antique Furniture
Many dealers feel that the technological system is superior to the stylistic system. Furniture styles linger for years. New technologies, because they bring cheaper prices or faster methods, are accepted quickly - usually within a year or two. The Dating of Old Houses, a paper prepared by Dr. Henry C.
Mercer, contains photographs, drawings, and patent information on nails, hinges, screws, hardware, planing machines, etc. The screw above was handmade.
The slot in the top was hand cut by a hacksaw. The screw on the right was machine made. The slot in its head was cut by a machine. There are many differences between a handmade and a machine-made screw.
100% Wood Challenge Ep. 4: Side table (No glue, no screws) w/ Mitch Peacock
The shank of a handmade screw does not taper. The point of the handmade screw is blunt. By contrast, the shaft of the machine made screw tapers to a point.
The threads are cut evenly and they pitch at a different angle than those of the handmade screw. The first machine made screw dates to The first machine made screw with a machine cut slot in its head dates to Click here to view part two of this article. Re: article july 3 regarding dating primitive furniture. I frequently see pointed screws on English furniture and small pieces.
Does this necessarily mean that the item was made after ?
Or was a pointed screw available in Europe esp. UK before ? Thanks for any help. I have been perplexed by this for years. You must be logged in to post a comment. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam.
A screw is a type of fastener, in some ways similar to a bolt (see Differentiation between bolt and screw below), typically made of metal, and characterized by a helical ridge, known as a male thread (external thread). Screws are used to fasten materials by digging in and wedging into a material when turned, while the thread cuts grooves in the fastened material that may help pull fastened. When dating a piece of antique furniture, one of the most important clues to its history is often overlooked. A nail may not be a noticeable style feature, but looking at them carefully can help. Modern dating screws with your self-esteem because closure is close to impossible to find. You rarely know the reason why someone abandoned you so you are forced to fill in the gaps on your own. You end up assuming the worst because the little voice in the back of your head is a critic.
Learn how your comment data is processed. Log in Remember me. Lost your password? This hinge dates to about The hinge in the middle is thinner and was removed from a cupboard made about The hinge on the right is a modern hinge. It was removed from a house when the kitchen cabinets were undated. The hinge dates to Stamped steel hinges began to appear in I began collecting up and down, pit, bolt, and early circular saws to study saw construction and the marks each type of saw left on the wood it cut.
The four saws on the left are waterwheel powered up and down saws. The circular saw was used to cut clapboards before Modern circular saws spin fast and cut very little wood on each revolution. The next three saws are bolt saws used by some mills to square both ends of a log before cutting boards.
The three saws on the right are two-man powered pit saws used to handsaw logs into boards. The tall pit saw was used in a shipyard as a large jigsaw to shape timber for ship construction.
For the purpose of scale and size, my garage is eight feet - six inches tall. Guess What? June This can mean that they were handcrafted prior to Machine-made furniture will have components that match more perfectly than those made by hand.
When hand planes were used to smooth woods, they usually left some sort of uneven surface.
This is especially evident on the back or underside of pieces made prior to the mids. Hand chisels and wood-shaping tools operated with elbow grease left cuts and nicks in the wood. In comparison, manually operated hand saws left a straighter pattern.
record of lathe made wood screws dates to an English patent of The development of wood screws progressed from a small cottage industry in the late 18th century to a highly mechanized industry by the midth century. This rapid transformation is marked by several technical innovations that help identify the time that a screw was jankossencontemporary.com Size: KB. A variety of tools exists to drive screws into the material to be fixed. The hand tools used to drive slot-headed and cross-headed screws are called screwdrivers. A power tool that does the same job is a power screwdriver. The hand-tool for driving cap screws and other types is called a spanner (U.K. usage) or wrench (U.S. usage).Author: Mary Bellis. Screws with these characteristics were produced until early in the 19th century. Aroun a machine was introduced that made screws on a lathe, but the War of slowed its distribution and development. After the war, the new machine went right to work, turning out virtually identical screws with sharp even threads.
A handcrafted furniture piece does not set it in time as an antique. Furniture is still being crafted by hand today.
However, machine-made evidence does give you a better picture of when the piece of furniture could not be from. It can be difficult distinguishing the type of wood or finish used on a furniture piece, but these are important clues. Certain types of woods were favored during different furniture periods. For example, oak was primarily used in furniture made prior to Aftermahogany and walnut were very popular.
The medallions on Disston saws give the most accurate indication of manufacturing dates for handsaws, panel saws, and backsaws. The first complete timeline of Disston handsaws was written by Pete Taran and published in the Winter issue of the Fine Tool jankossencontemporary.com article assigned manufacturing dates to Disston saws, based on the medallions, creating what is called a type study. Jul 03, Business of Doing Business System for Dating Country and Primitive Furniture, Part One System for Dating Country & Primitive Furniture, Part1 The Business of Doing Business in Antiques - The Journal of Antiques and Collectibles - July furniture, hinges, nails, screws. Closely review the screws. Screws were not made completely by machine until So if you find a furniture item using screws that have completely rounded shafts, pointed ends, and perfectly finished heads with matching cuts (much like a screw you would purchase today), the piece likely dates to the midth century or later.
Moving into the s, maple and cherry showed up in fine furniture manufacture quite often. Many Victorian furniture manufacturers used mahogany and rosewood through the late s.
Then, aroun oak became popular again. The type of wood used is not an exact indicator of age, but when you tie in the other factors like style and construction technique, you start to get a better idea of the date of the piece. Original upholstery materials like silk, wool, or cotton were spun and woven into a variety of damasks, satins, and brocades with many different patterns.
A wide variety of materials and fabric designs were favored for upholstery during different periods. Schwartz is an upholstery guide that can help you decipher the styles that align with furniture periods. Closely review the screws. Screws were not made completely by machine until So if you find a furniture item using screws that have completely rounded shafts, pointed ends, and perfectly finished heads with matching cuts much like a screw you would purchase todaythe piece likely dates to the midth century or later.
Screws made from about through the mids were partially machine-made giving the threading a more even appearance. But the heads were still finished with hacksaws to add the groove to fit a screwdriver, so no two are exactly alike.
The first screws were crafted during the s by blacksmiths using square nail stock that was heated and pounded until it was somewhat round.