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Then it's air-dried for three months and
kiln-dried. After that it's rough-cut to size and sent to us in carload lots."
The Hagertys' next addition to their line, an
early-eighteenth century trestle table which they found in the Wadsworth
Atheneum in Hartford, Connecticut, presented two manufacturing difficulties.
The pine boards forming the top of the original were held together with end
cleats fastened with handmade nails. Fran and his shop foreman, Paul Young,
worried over the problem of the handmade nails for some time before they hit
upon the expedient of taking a horseshoe nail and spreading the head with a
ballpeen-hammer blow. The result looks enough like a handmade nail to fool
anyone but an expert--or a horse.
About this time the Hagertys found that they could effect a considerable saving in producing the turned maple legs of the tavern table if they subcontracted the work to a large mill. As Fran explains it:
"There is always considerable wastage in such lathe work, and a big woodworking plant can put the odds and ends from the turnings to a profitable use, whereas a small shop like ours would just have to throw them away. So we formed the practice of farming out that sort of work to mills that work to our specifications. About twenty percent of our woodworking is now done by outside mills; the rest is done right here in our little shop."