Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Handcut Dentil Moulding

The PA German Hanging Cupboard in the sidebar is a reproduction of a cupboard housed at the Winterthur Museum. I learned how to make this cupboard in a class taught by Gene Landon at Olde Mill Cabinet Shoppe.

The most impressive part of the cupboard is the crown moulding and I think, specifically, the dentil moulding. When those of us taking Gene's class first saw his reproduction, we gasped. And I thought, "How the heck did he figure that out?"

Making the dentil moulding is surprisingly simple. At left are progress shots of the layout and the series of saw cuts. Each tooth is 3/8" square. The pointed part of the tooth is half the height and width of each square and is created by cutting a 45 degree angle from the top two corners of each tooth.

I used a 24 tpi Zona saw, but you can use a scroll saw or coping saw or whatever you like, just so it makes a fine cut. Touch up saw cuts with a small chisel, if necessary.

That's all there is to it! Some clever 18th c. carpenter figured that out and made one impressive kitchen cupboard.