Popular Woodworking in America: An Interview with Zachary Dillinger

Zach Dillinger
Zach Dillinger
makes a speciality of constructing 18th century American furnishings with
hand instruments and interval applicable methods. He’s a member of
the Nice Lakes Chapter of the Society of American Interval
Furnishings Makers, and the Mid-West Instrument Collectors
Affiliation. He’s written for quite a few publications and
web sites together with his personal,
The Eaton County Woodworker. His work has been
adjudged to be Museum High quality by
Early American
and has been juried into that publication’s
prestigious “Listing of Conventional American Crafts” for the
previous three years. Zach will be teaching at Woodworking in
America at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center, September

You’re employed solely with hand instruments with a purpose to precisely
reproduce interval furnishings. That mentioned, how has your strategy
advanced over time—do you end up going deeper down the
rabbit gap?

Regardless that my tooling has stayed roughly the identical, my strategy
has positively modified over time. Once I first began constructing
correct reproductions it was necessary to me to copy the
items as they’re now, grungy, soiled, broken from 200 or extra
years of existence. Whereas I nonetheless love working this fashion, I’ve
moderated that strategy a little bit, focusing in lots of instances on
making a chunk that appears as it could have when it was new.
Which means when you nonetheless see software marks, overcuts in
joinery and floor tearout in my work, you additionally see shinier
finishes, no simulated oxidation, or different fake indicators of age.
The items are, in my very own opinion, stronger for it, and it
allows me to show two items facet by facet, one aged and one
new, and present how delicate modifications make an enormous distinction to the
total presentation.

Do you might have a selected piece that you just’re most proud

I’m most pleased with my precise replica of a c.1700 painted
chest of drawers. The unique is within the Metropolitan Museum of
Artwork and I labored with their conservators to get the precise paint
recipes, wonderful images of the inside surfaces and
ornament. I really feel assured in saying this was by far essentially the most
technically tough piece I’ve accomplished, not simply the
woodwork (there may be over 30 ft of mitered moldings used as
floor ornament) however primarily the painted ornament. You’ll
see a stained model of this dresser in my forthcoming guide.


With Saw, Plane and Chisel

“With Noticed, Aircraft and Chisel” will likely be obtainable December 2016
from In style Woodworking Books.

Talking of your new guide, would thoughts speaking a
little in regards to the work that went into that? 

The guide, “With Noticed, Aircraft and Chisel”, was an immense quantity
of labor. I’m very lucky to have had such an awesome staff of
people to share the workload. We’ve had the very best of the very best in
all areas of manufacturing, I used to be in a position to get a number of fine quality
contributors to assist me in areas the place I can’t communicate with
authority (two examples: upholstery was dealt with by the
extremely gifted Michael Mascelli, and a primer on furnishings
types by famous historian Robert F. Trent). We had been additionally in a position
to get Roy Underhill to write down the ahead. It’s a dream come
true to have been in a position to work with so many nice people
together with my private hero Roy (thanks Roy!).

The guide has six initiatives that symbolize all the foremost types
of American furnishings from the late 17th century into the early
19th century. We even have extra normal chapters on all the things
from put together inventory by hand (trace, its simpler than loads
of individuals make it!) to chopping the best of joints to carry the
items collectively. I couldn’t be prouder of this guide, and I hope
many WIA attendees will contemplate selecting it up when it’s
launched later this 12 months.

What are you presently engaged on?

My important focus since ending the guide has been in being a superb
dad to my four-month-old daughter Abigail. I haven’t been in
the store a lot since ending the guide however I’m all the time pondering
about what to construct subsequent. I’m presently torn between a
replica of a c.1650 Dutch valuables chest on stand from
the Rijksmuseum, or a chunk of Classical furnishings alongside the
traces of Lannuier, maybe one thing from the Cincinnati
Classical faculty. We’ll see how a lot I spend at WIA earlier than
deciding (good mahogany for a classical piece is dear!).

What are you trying ahead to most at WIA?

I’m trying ahead to studying from my fellow presenters as
a lot as potential and likewise the attendees. It’s my agency perception
that you may study one thing from everybody you come into
contact with, and WIA is an effective way to fulfill a big group of
people with like pursuits. There are a variety of oldsters whom I
solely “know” on-line or by way of their writings and I’m ecstatic
to have the ability to meet with them. One other factor I’m trying ahead
to is the Market … the very last thing I must do is purchase
extra instruments however I’ve a suspicion that recollections and images
received’t be the one issues I come residence with!


Don’t miss Zach Dillinger at
Woodworking in America at the Northern Kentucky Convention
Center, September 16-18.


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