Subject Stage 1 of Making

I began the making of the table and chairs with the metal frame. The first thing I did was cut the lengths of metal for the basic flat shapes of the frame; so all the squares. I ground down the comers of some of the rods to create chamfers which would allow the metal from the weld to flow into the gap created by the chamfer. This would allow me to clean up the joints later on by grinding down the weld so it would be flush with the metal. I then needed to join the square in the table top to the edges of the table frame. I decided that rather than putting multiple lengths from the square out to the edges like I had planned to do in my sketches, a simple cross would suffice, saving metal and weight. To make sure it was exactly in the center of the table I put the table top square onto a MDF board and drew the square on. I then found the center of the square and matched this center with the center of the smaller central square and then welded it together. I found that the metal tended to warp a little bit when welding the joints due to heat and I needed to redo a couple of joints due to the square being slightly skew but I got there in the end.

Once I had completed this I started work on the chair. I again cut the metal and made the  basic shapes. In order to join the shapes together at the extremely awkward angles I had chosen, I constructed a jig out of wood to hold the pieces in place at the correct angle whilst I put in the welds. This was very satisfying and made the process actually quite easy. I then attached the back of the chair at the very small angle that I had ground into the metal, so the back tilted froward slightly.

I then was faced with the hard part; the table base. The only way I found of doing this was a combinating of ginding the angles into the metal and creating a jig to hold them in place. The jig was a simple square box which matched the size of the square base of the table. I then carefully measured the lengths of the rod that would join the base to the table top cut them to length. Then I place the rod on the central table top square that I had fitted inside the large square of the table top, and rested it into the corresponding corner of the box to get the correct angle of the rod so that it would fit to the table base. I made sure that I had cleaned up the welding joins I had previously done so the rods had a flat surface to rest on. I was very pleased with this simple solution and it worked pretty well. I did need to redo a few as they sometimes slipped out of place, but I used a magnet to help keep them attached the the metal square in the center of the table top.

Once this was complete I adjusted my jig, cutting it down to the correct height so that the base would rest on top the of it so I could attach the base to the legs that I had just welded on at the correct angle. I tried to make sure everything was as level as possible so the table top would be level as well.

I am pleased with the outcome of the metal frame. It was very tricky to get everything level and as straight as I wanted it as welding always tends to never be quite true, but I am pleased with the job that I did, much thanks to the jigs that I made.

Following finishing the construction of the metal frame I cleaned up the joins as best I could with a angle grinder and a file and then got some car body filler and filled in some of the gaps and holes so everything was flush and the weld would not be seen when it will be painted in white.


2 thoughts on “Subject Stage 1 of Making

    1. Hi, Thank you! I think that looks like a very good welder for its size and should be fine for the sort of work I was doing here. I was using this welder for the job-
      It was probably overkill for the scale I was working at, but it is a very good machine.
      If I was to go on to produce the table and chairs like the one I made last year on a more industrial scale, I would get a more heavy duty one like the one I was using, but for the average repair job or DIY project your welder looks perfect, it depends on what you are intending to do! Hope that helps a bit!


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