Oak dining table... What era might it be from?

oldstuff4meFebruary 7, 2012

I bought this table via craiglist. I didn't pay a whole lot for it and regardless of it's age I love it, so I'm not too concerned with it's authenticity or age... but I'm curious to know what era and style it is.

The top pulls open and it has a 24" butterfly leaf in the middle. The photo of the end of the table is showing how the table top has long arms that slide into the end.

Any thoughts?

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Help please. What would the tabletop dimensions be without the extensions up? That would impact my guess as to age. BTW I love this table too. Handsome, basic and sturdy looking.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2012 at 1:02PM
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6' long (8' with the leaf up)
3' wide


    Bookmark   February 8, 2012 at 1:11PM
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I'm not too surprised there hasn't been a lot of response to your query because this style is just a classic and it transcends a lot of eras, unlike some of the gaudier period pieces where one can just look and know instantly. The only thing to jump out at me are the casters, because they were often on tables made in the timeframe up to the mid-thirties and just generally disappear after that in dining room tables. The cylinder leg style often appears in twenties tables, but nothing else about the table other than wood choice really defines a more definitive answer to me. It would be a total guess and that doesn't really help you much. Perhaps someone else can speak to the mechanisms and peg it that way. Nice, nice table.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2012 at 9:58AM
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Research those casters. Those are old style with metal wheels. Admitdely, these could have been installed after the table was made, but these seem to be original pieces. The level of quality may be indicated by the wheel bearing. If the wheel has no bearing other than its own plain sleeve and some lub, it could be old or a newer wheel of low cost manufacture. If the wheel contains a low friction ball bearing, it would be a quality and higher cost item. Old casters with cast wheels had nothing special for bearings, just the rivet pin and some lubricant.

Those wheels could have been made by casting or machined from solid rods. If machined, the metal could be brass, bronze, or steel. These wheels can be formed by forging, but that is expensive and overkill for this application.

The trunion fork is not a sheet metal stamping. It appears to be a casting.

I don't recall seeing casters made like these after 1940. By 1960, caster wheels were becoming molded plastic with larger diameters.

Those old casters took a beating when the floor was cleaned, especially if the floor was wet mopped. Mop water invaded the plain bearing and later resulted in a 'squeaky' wheel having a lot of friction. Floor mopping and spills were primary sources of corrosion in the bearing.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 12:06AM
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Can you tell if the table top is solid or vaneer? Can't tell from the picture. You can also tell by looking at a cross section of the leaves. The top appears to be quarter sawed oak. The legs appear to be a different material as oak does not turn well. Further, it seems to me that the table and the casters are of a different era. Also, the joinery puts it in the 30ties to me. Further, the piece has been refinished so the age is some what masked.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2012 at 10:29AM
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Thanks for your input everyone!!

The tabletop is definitely solid, rather than veneer. Also, the edge of the table is just the tiniest bit uneven, as though it were beveled by hand. I haven't had a chance to get down and really examine the casters... maybe later today.

I don't need to know an exact age... I was just a bit curious if anything jumped out about it to anyone.

Thanks again.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2012 at 10:39AM
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