Serpentine Dresser


Scott started work on a dresser with serpentine curves for Aviva in Winter 2003. To vacuum laminate the drawer fronts, he built a form out of pressboard, then cut bubinga into very thin slices to bend upon it. Since the first attempt is an experiment in determining whether and how much the bubinga will bend, Scott claims he used scrap bubinga. Aviva, who loves bubinga, wonders what the heck is scrap about bubinga?! Completion of the dresser is expected by Summer 2004.


To make the form, Scott first cut an outline of the curves he wanted straight into the masonite work bench top. (He already had planned to replace that bench top since it was slightly warped.)

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Then Scott screwed together pieces of pressboard cut into that exact curve. That gives him the form he will use to bend the bubinga.

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The slices of "scrap" bubinga, ready to be vacuum laminated and bent to fit the form. The 10 slices measure just 3/4 inch (well, Scott says they're 25/32, but 3/4 is close enough!), thin enough that they will bend and not break.

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Testing the vacuum pressure to make sure it bends the wood properly. The styrofoam is there to protect the plastic bag from being punctured by the ends of the wood.

Yes, the form did change here. After initial testing, Scott decided the radius was too sharp on the outer sections and so he modified the curves a little.

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All glued up and successfully bent. A very nice piece of scrap, and a test vehicle for drawer creation.

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Scott declared the test a success, and started work on making the real drawers.