Repair of woodcarved griffin

January 20, 2012 MaryMay Misc. Antique Furniture Repair

I’ve been working on a furniture repair for a fabulous pair of wood carved griffins. This is absolutely wonderful carving – not sure of the year, but may be 150 to 200 years old – German maybe? I am repairing this for an antique dealer in Savannah, GA.

One of the griffins does not need repair, and one has a part of the tail missing. So I had to do the repair in reverse – what a brain tease! Way to turn your brain inside out. Plus the fact that this is really 3-dimensional – not a simple relief carving. It was a lot more work than I anticipated in just fussing with the details.

I carved most of the tail when it was not glued on to the griffin. If I glued it on first, it would have been very awkward to get around the wings with my large handled tools, and I’m pretty confident that some part of the griffin would have been broken in the process – just trying to clamp it. I left an extension¬†of wood on the tail so I could have something to put in the vice. I’m not sure if I made minimum wage on this one… But I love a good challenge, and this one was definitely that. It’s always surprising when you look at it and think “it’s just a simple little twisting tail” – HA!

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