No. 220 Settle–Corbels

corbel
The corbel is a common element in Craftsman furniture, providing form and function. A series of corbels supports the wide arms of the No. 220 settle. Five are required for my shortened version: one on each front leg, two on each rear leg, and one centered on the back. While the No. 220’s design allows for simply gluing the corbels to the legs (there’s substantial long grain to long grain exposure for good gluing), I chose to join the corbels to the frame using a 1/4″ tongue in the dado to ensure positioning. When replicating corbels for a reproduction, I don’t try to copy it exactly. Instead, I note major dimensions–the width and height of the corbel–and the general shape of the curve, then approximate the curve using a bezier curve in Illustrator or SketchUp. Once I have a shape I like, I print out and transfer to my template. After cutting close on the bandsaw, I complete final shaping with a spokeshave to ensure a fair curve. With the template ready, I mark the blanks, rough out on the bandsaw, then use a pattern bit in the router to copy the parts.

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