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This Handbook contains, in a form convenient for
everyday use, a comprehensive digest of tiie knowledge
of Bamboo Work, scattered over nearly twenty thousand
columns of Work — one of the weekly journals it is my
fortune to edit— and supplies concise information on the
general principles of the subjects on which it treats.
In preparing for publication in book form the mass
of relevant niitter contained in the volumes of Work,
much had to be arranged anew, altered, and largely
re-written. From these causes the contributions of
many are so blended that the writings of individuals
cannot be distinguished for acknowledgment. A por-
tion of the matter is quite new, having been written
especially for this volume.
Readers who may desire additional information re-
specting special details of the matters dealt with in
this Handbook, or instructions on kindred subjects,
should address a ([uestion to Work, so that it may
be answered in the columns of that journal.
P. N. HASLUCK.
La Belle Sauvage, London.
I. — Bamboo : Its Source and Uses
II. — Hovv 1o Work Bamboo
III. — Bamboo Tables .
IV. — Bamboo Chairs and Seats .
V. — Bamboo Bedroom Furniture
VI. — Bamboo Hall Racks and Stands
\n. — Bamboo Music Racks
VIII. -Bamboo Cabinets and Bookcases
IX. — Bamboo Window Blinds .
X. — Miscellaneous Articles of Bamboo
XI. — Bamboo Mail-cart
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
— The Baiuboo
— Section of Rasp .
—Mortise Holes in Bamboo .
—Brace and Chnck
6. — Fretworker's Cramps and
— Bamboo Worker's Bench-
— Mitre Box ....
—Method of Cramping Bam-
— Cutting Gauge .
— Bunsen Burner ,
— Bending-iron in Block
— Bending Iron .
—Method of Bending Bam-
— Bending-board for Bamboo
—Bamboo Worker's Bench .
—Section of Bench
— Steam-chest for Bamboo .
— Joint of Steam-chest .
—Method of Straightening
— Mitred Joint in Baniboo .
— Hollowed End of Cane
27. — Tee Joints in Bamboo .
— Tee Joint in Bamluio .
, — Angle Joint in Bamboo
— Diagonal Joint in Baniboo .
— Bay-pole Joint ,
—Method of Rebating Bam-
boo . . ...
—Three-tray Bamboo Table .
— Support for Table Top
—Bamboo Table with Shelf
—Shelf Bracket for Table .
. — Baniboo Occasional Table
with Flap ....
—Bamboo Table with Shelf .
—Top Batten and Leg of
Bamboo Table .
,— Halved Batten for Bamboo
Table Top ....
, — Block for Hexagonal Joints
.—Bamboo Occasional Table .
.—Table Top ....
. — Alternate Half-design for
Table Top ....
.—Section of Table Top Edge.
—Joint between Table Top
and Leg . . . .49
—Section of Table showing
— Section showing Shelf Joint
—Bamboo Tea Table with
—Underside of Tea Table Top
—Bamboo Writing Table
—Tray and Drawer of Table .
—Combined Hall Seat and
—Combined Hall Seat and
— Tal>le Top Support .
— Bamboo Chair .
— Cliair Leg and Back .
— Chair Legs and Rail .
— Chair Bottom
— Bamboo Corner Seat .
62.— End Sections of Corner
—Bamboo Settee .
— Front Section for Settee .
—Back Section for Settee
— Bamlxio Double Chair or
— Underside of Settee Seat .
—Child's High Chair .
— Foot-r.-st Support
—Baby's Folding Cliair .
— Banibo(j Rocking Chair
—Bamboo Couch .
—Foot of Bamboo Bedstead .
—Head of Bamboo Bedstead
—Head of Bamboo Bedstead
, — Angle Iron for Bamboo
,— Child's Bamboo Cot .
, — Another Design for Bam
—Bamboo Dressing Table
— Bamboo Washstand .
—Baniboo Washstand .
— Toilet Mirror with Bamboo
— Side of Mirror Frame
—Hat Rack .
—Upright for Hat Rack
—Filling for Hat Rack .
— Umbrella Stand .
— Joints for Umbrella Stand
—Umbrella Stand .
. — Tenuiiial of Umbrella Stand
.—Hat and Umbrella Stand .
. — Centre Upi'ight of Umbrella
. — Side Upright of Umbrella
. - Hat and Umbrella Stand .
, — Back Section of Umbrella
—Front Section of Umbrella
— Hat and Umbrella Stand .
—Two-division Music Rack .
— Two-division Music Rack .
—Three-division Music Rack
— End View of Rack
—Partition of Rack
— Two-division Music Rack .
-Three-division Music Rack
— Combined Table and Music
—Section of Music Rack
— Back Section of Bamboo
—Front Section of Bamboo
— Ba m boo Cabinet .
—Bamboo Music Cabinet
— Framing of Bamboo Music
—Door Fiame of Bamboo
Music Cabinet .
— Combined China Cupboard
and Bookcase .
—Framing of China Cupboard 108
— Framing of Bookcase . . 109
—Method of Fixing Bookshelf 110
—Bookshelf Grooved and
121.— Methods of Supporting
—Bamboo Side of Bookcase . Ill
—Bamboo Bookshelf . . 112
—End View of Bamboo Book-
— Bamboo Window Blind
—Framing of Bamboo Win-
—Framing for Inside Section
of Blind ....
—Bamboo Window Blind
—Bamboo Window Blind
—Bamboo Frame for Window
Flush with Wall
— Side View of Bamboo Win-
— Bauiboo Frame for Re-
cessed Window . . . 121
— Bamboo Coal-box
— Legs of Bamboo Coal-box .
— Iron Lining for Bamboo
— Bamboo Fender .
—Section of Cane with Strip
— Angle Joint for Aquarium . 126
141.— Bamboo Camera Stand 126
— Flower-pot or Jardiniere
Stand . . . .127
—Triangle for Bamboo Stand 128
— Alternate Design for Flower-
pot Stand ....
—Bamboo Tripod for Jar-
— Bamboo Flower-pot Stand .
—Bamboo Flower-pot Stand
—Bamboo Flower-pot Stand
-Shelf of Window-stand .
— Bamboo Lamp-stand .
—Bamboo Lamp-stand .
—Bamboo Overmantel .
—Back Section of Bamboo
—Bamboo Overmantel .
—Framing of Bamboo Over-
—Half-elevation of Bamboo
Pipes .... 142
Foiu--fold Bamboo Screen . 143
Screen Hinge . . . 143
Two-fold Bamboo Screen . 144
Framing of Bamboo Screen 145
Filling for Bamboo Screen. 146
Elevation of Bamboo Fire-
screen .... 147
Plan of Bamboo Fire-screen 148
Bamboo Fire-screen . . 148
Side Upright of Bamboo
Fire-screen . . . 149
Three-fold Bamboo Screen 150
Three-fold Bamboo Screen 151
Rack for Ten
Rack for Nine
-Bamboo Whatnot Screen . 152
-Side of Bamboo Whatnot
Screen .... 152
-Bamboo Mail-cart . . 154
-Mailcart Seat . . . 154
-End of Mail-cart Well. . 1.55
-Upper Frame of Mail-cart . 156
-Section of Checked Bam-
boo .... 156
BAMBOO : ITS SOURCE AND USES.
Bamboo canes are the stems of giant grasses belong-
ing to the genus Bamhusa and allied genera, whose
species are found in most tropical and sub-tropical
regions. The allied genera include Arundinaria,
Arumlo, Dendrocalamiis, Gifjantoclilva^ Melocanna.,
and some others ; and their species, numbering, alto-
gether two or three hundred, if not more, may be
as small and slender as pampas grass, or as large
as the Gigantochloa aspera of Java, which in one
instance was found to be 170 ft. high, and whose
stem may be more than 20 in. thick.
Except only one or two species, bamboos are in-
digenous to some particular locality ; the principal
of these exceptions is Bamhusa vuhiaiis, which is cul-
tivated extensively in sub-tropical Asia, tlie West
Indies, and South America, and which has a height
of from 20 ft. to 120 ft., the stems of the larger kinds
having a diameter of from 4 in. to 8 in.
All bamboo plants have stems that are very
slender in proportion to their height, and these
stems grow to their full length without any branches
forming ; when at their greatest possible height, the
plants throw out straight, horizontal branches at
the top, and these form a dense thicket. All bam-
boo plants shoot forth jointed root-stocks or rhizomes
beneath the surface of the ground, and from one of
these may grow from ten to one hundred stems.
10 Bamboo JVork.
The stems of bamboo plants are very strong, but
hollow, with the exception of partitions at the
nodes ; and to these two qualities is due the great
popularity and usefulness of bamboo canes, which
to the Chinese, Japanese, Indo-Chinese, and West
Indians are essentials to everyday life, and have
been so for many centuries ; to the European they
have been known popularly for only a few years.
Bamboo stems resemble the stems of all grasses in
being jointed ; they are hard, light as regards
weight, elastic, and, as has been said, hollow, con-
taining only a light, spongy pith, and the parti-
tions at the nodes, these partitions increasing the
strength of the stems greatly. Most bamboos are of
approximate circular section, hut one species is
square ; this, when three years old, has a sectional
area of one square inch.
The species of Bamhusa number about thirty ; all
those of similar height have much the same appear-
ance, the only marked difference being the stem,
which varies in colour through dozens of shades, and
in ssize from a diameter of the human finger to a di-
ameter of twenty-two inches.
Perhaps the most beautiful and typical bamboo
is B. aruiidiuacea, and it is this plant that is illus-
trated by Fig. 1. There is little doubt but that this
is one of the most useful bamboos of which the Wes-
tern peoples have any knowledge.
Bamboo plants flower but rarely, but when
flowering does occur, a large amount of seed results.
Some of the Indian bamboos bear berries, the
species noted in this respect being Melncanna hamhu-
mides, on which grows an edible and fleshy fruit,
from 3 in. to 5 in. long, having the shape of a
pear ; M: hamhusoides grows to a height of 70 ft. or
80 ft., and attains a diameter of 12 in. Another
beiTy-bearing bamboo is the Nmiidina domesHca of
China and Japan, which is used chiefly for decora-
tive purposes, and whose berries are red.
Bamboo : its Source and Uses.
A silicioiis solution contained by the stems of
some bamboos, amongst them Mclocanna hamhusoidc><,
1.— The Bamboo.
ah-eady mentioned, is known as tabasheer. This
hardens to a white, opaque, or sometimes translu-
12 Bamboo Work.
cent, variety of opal, which breaks up into what ap-
pears to be dry starch of irregular size and shape.
A suggestion has been made that the presence of
tabasheer in a bamboo plant denotes disease, or is
caused by some piovious injury. Tabasheer will
absorb its own weight of water, being then quite
transparent ; calcined and powdered, it is of high
esteem in India as a medicine.
It would not serve any useful purpose to tabulate
here all the species of bamboo that are known ; but
perhaps the names, sources, and the leading charac-
teristics of the principal bamboo plants may be found
of use. The table on the following page gives an
arbitrary selection of bamboos to the number of
about thirty ; the complete list would number two
or three iiundred.
The use of bamboo in Great Britain and the wes-
tern part of Europe generally is increasing, but as
yet most of its applications are in furniture making.
Compared with China, Japan, India, and tropical
America, its use in this country is restricted, due, of
course, to its being a new material, practically.
Europeans can have but little idea as to the great
number of the exceedingly varied uses to which bam-
boo is put in the countries of its source. There is
hardly any purpose for which iron, stone, or wood
is used here but what is answ^ered nearly, if not
quite as well, in the Eastern countries named above
by the use of bamboo.
It is interesting to give here a few brief notes
descriptive of the many uses to which bamboo
canes are applied, chiefly, be it said, in the East,
In China, the tender, but tasteless, bamboo
shoots are used as food, being either boiled or
pickled, the seeds furnishing a farina suitable for
cakes. The gnarled roots are cut into fantastic carv-
ings, or into handles for the Chinese lanterns, or
are turned in a lathe to form oval sticks for the use
of worshippers. The tapering canes are used for all
Bamboo : its Source and Uses.
Dendrocala m us
I Japan and South-
i ern England.
South Europe and
I North Africa.
China and India.
New Zealand and
Japan, China, and
Asia and South
Dwarf species ; hardy.
10 ft. to 40 ft. high.
Small or switch cane.
10 ft. high ; tough flower
stems and leaves.
10 ft. high ; variegated white
and violet leaves.
10 ft. high ; decorative plant.
9 ft. or 10 ft. high; very
Stem when split is material
for Durma mats.
Flowering reed ; one kind
of Pampas grass.
Crooked and sometimes
Thorny ; one of the most
Young shoots boiled for
Dwarf species ; very hardy.
Stem 16 in. in diameter and
Stem contains water.
100 ft. high ; stem has thick
Exceedingly hard stem.
20 ft. to 120 ft. high.
Tall ; young shoots used as
About 100 ft. high; stem
Probably tallest bamboo ;
exceeds 150 ft. high.
Very flexible and strong ;
used for ropes.
Very tall and thick.
130 ft. to 110 ft. high.
120 ft to 130 ft. high, 22 in.
Tall ; young shoots used as
70 ft. or 80 ft. high; berry-
14 Bamboo Work,
purposes that poles can be applied to in carrying, sup-
porting, propelling, andmeasuring, and in all cases
where strength, lightness, and length are requisite.
The joists of houses and the ribs of sails, the shafts
of spears and the wattles of hurdles, the tubes of
aqueducts and the rafters of roofs, the handles of um-
brellas and the ribs of fans, all are made of bamboo.
The leaves are sewn in layers upon cords to make
rain cloaks, swept into heaps for manure, matted
into thatches, or used as cloths in which to cook rice
dumplings. Cut into splints and slivers of various
sizes, bamboo cane is worked into baskets and trays
of every form and fancy, twisted into cables, plaited
into awnings for boats, houses, and streets, and
woven into mats which find employment in theatre
scenery, house roofs, and casings for goods of all
kinds. The chips are picked into a sort of oakum
and mixed with shavings to form a stuffing for mat-
tresses. The bamboo furnishes material for the bed
and the lounge, chopsticks for use in eating, pipes
for smoking, flutes and other musical instruments of
a like nature, curtains for windows and doors,
brooms, screens, stools, coops, stands, and almost
every article of furniture that can be thought of.
From bamboo is made a serviceable paper by a
modern and Eastern process ; but the Chinese long
have had bamboo paper ; and antiquai'ies claim that
as early as 3000 B.C. the Chinese national records
were written on thin plates of bamboo.
Builders' scaffolds can be made of bamboo canes,
and are found light and serviceable, for the material
does not decay in water or in earth, and dryness
makes it harder than ever ; in proportion to its
weight, it is very strong. Canes 4 in. thick may be
used for scaffolds 25 ft. high, and such scaffolds will
bear iron beams weighing 20 cwt. Bamboo poles,
suitable for scaffolds, are obtainable 65 ft. high.
It is the ease with which bamboo canes may be
transformed into serviceable articles that, perhaps.
Bamboo: its Source and Uses. 15
is one of the chief reasons for its wide use. Bamboo
can be obtained nearly 2 ft. in diameter, and a sec-
tion of such a cane can be fitted very easily with a
bottom and a handle to form a basket or pail, for
instance. Bamboo flower pots, from 3 in. to 1 ft. in
diameter, having wooden bottoms, can be con-
structed at something under one penny each ; bam-
boo is very durable in damp situations, and makes
almost as good a flower pot as earthenware, whilst
it has not the fragile nature of this latter material.
In the Castleton botanical gardens, Jamaica, are
some thousands of these bamboo flower pots, which,
however, have not come much, if at all, into use in
One curious use of bamboo is as a whetstone,
another being in the making of knives. For both
these jjurposes is required the superior kinds of bam-
boo having surfaces as hard as flint. B. tahacaria
has a stem so hard that it strikes fire when cut with
The Annamites of Indo-China use bamboo for the
making of domestic utensils, weapons of the chase
and of war, furniture, water pipes, ropes, paper,
and buildings. In common with the inhabitants of
China and Japan, the Annamites are so skilled
that they can apply bamboo canes to many of the
uses for which the hardest wood or even iron or
steel is considered necessary in this and in other
parts of the Western hemisphere. Thus, for
hydraulic and mechanical work, bamboo is made to
serve, though the only available tools for preparing
it are of the roughest kind. In the distilleries, where
alcohol is made from rice, bamboo pipes, having
joints luted with clay, conduct the spirit to and from
bamboo receivers. Weaving and rope-making
frames are made from bamboo, and the products of
these frames probably will bear comparison with
goods produced in any part of the Western hemi-
sphere. Young and tender bamboo stalks provide
1 6 Bamboo IVork,
food for human beings, and the leaves are eaten by
horses and cattle.
Perhaps the most remarkable use of the bamboo
among the Annamites is in the construction of
norias ; these are wheels which, during the dry
season, raise water from streams and distribute it
through aqueducts to the parched fields. The spot
on the bank for the establishment of a noria having
been selected, small dams are constructed a little
higher up by planting long and substantial bamboo
rods in the bed of the river so as to constitute a
jetty. A passage is left free in the middle of the
river so that navigation is not interrupted. In put-
ting together a noria, two bamboo wheels, each 30 ft.
in diameter, are connected together at a distance of
3 ft. apart by twenty-six paddles, alternating with
twenty-six bamboo vessels arranged obliquely ; the
vessels are mere canes of large diameter, with one
end closed. The paddles are struck by the current
and cause the noria to revolve around its bamboo
axle, the bearings of which are the sides of the canes
in the structural support ; the axle rests where cer-
tain of the canes cross each other. Each vessel in
the water becomes full and is carried to the top of
the wheel, but on the downward half -revolution its
position, of course, is inverted, and the water flows
into a woven bamboo conduit which communicates
with a system of aqueducts. The speed of the
wheel varies with the current, but usually the wheel
revolves once in about forty seconds ; and as each
of the twenty-eight vessels contains about 2 qt. of
water, the noria should raise about 21 gal. per
minute, or 1,260 gal. per hour ; in practice, not more
than 18 gal. or 19 gal. would be raised per minute
under such conditions. Sometimes, eight norias
will work together, raising between them about 150
gal. per minute. When the current is weak the
noria is made narrower, and by substituting steps
for the paddles, a tread-wheel is formed, which can
Bamboo: its Source and Uses. 17
be worked by one coolie. Sometimes the top of the
noria has a big wooden pinion which receives the
motion of a horizontal wheel turned by a bullock.
The Chinese house may be bamboo from "founda-
tions " to roof ; on plan, the house is a rectangle
divided into three, and the walls and two partitions
are upright bamboos of large diameter, to which are
lashed horizontals of the same material but smaller
in diameter, still smaller canes or laths of riven cane
being interlaced and plastered over with mud or
clay. The door has stiles and rails of bamboo, the
panels being interlaced bamboo strips. The roof is
constructed by supporting bamboo purlins longitu-
dinally on the tops of the partitions, rafters of smaller
bamboos being lashed to the purlins and then over-
laid with small cane, which supports a thatch of
leaves obtained from the bamboo plant. The floor
is of earth well rammed down.
Enough has been said to convince the reader that
the possibilities of bamboo as a constructional
material are practically unlimited. Though, of
course, its use in this country will never be so great
as in the countries of its source, yet as its properties
— desirable, and indeed unique — come to be better
known there can be no doubt but that it will be
very generally used for many purposes for which the
far more costly woods are now employed.
The supply of bamboo cannot be exhausted, for,
in addition to the probable fact that its species grow
over a more extended area than do those of timber
trees in general, its growth is so much more rapid ;
whereas, timber trees are useless for constructional
purposes until they are several years old, many
young bamboos add from 10 ft. to 25 ft. to their
height per month, and their stems are strong enough
for use in but a few years.
The kinds of bamboo canes used in Great Britain
and in Europe generally are black, brown, yellow,
mottled, mahogany, and spotted, these colours being
1 8 Bamboo Work.
approximate only, and varying greatly in a bundle of
canes, traded as being all of one colour. The black
and mahogany canes, which are coloured artificially,
are more uniform than those sold in their natural
state, the yellow canes being excepted. Besides the
plain stained canes, some resemble tortoise-shell
with fancy mottling artificially produced, and this
kind has become very popular for furniture.
The sizes of bamboo canes in ordinary use vary
from \ in. to 3 in. in diameter, and from 18 in. to 12
ft. long ; for special purposes, canes very much
thicker and very much longer can be obtained.
Dealers in bamboo sell the canes as a rule by the
dozen or by the hundred, all of one size as nearly as
possible as regards both diameter and length,
but generally an assorted bundle can be obtained for
a few shillings, such a bundle containing, perhaps,
150 canes ranging from 18 in. to 7ft. long, and from
\ in. to 2 in. in diameter. Canes with roots are
slightly dearer than the plain ones. Generally, bam-
boo dealers supply also matting, Japanese leather
paper, lacquer panels and trays ; from them also
can be obtained the small white solid canes some-
times used for filling in open spaces in furniture
instead of employing panels.
Matting, used very largely for covering the tops
of bamboo tables, may be either white or fancy-
coloured, and is sold by the square yard or by the
roll, generally containing about 40 yards.
Japanese leather paper is sold by the roll, and
may be had in many designs executed in gold, red
and gold, black and gold, etc.
Japanese lacquer panels are almost a necessity in
making up bamboo furniture. They are of many
kinds, qualities, and sizes, the latter ranging from
15 in. square to 24 in. square, larger panels being ob-
tainable for special purposes. These remarks on
panels apply also to the shallow trays in lacquer
work used for tea-tables and similar furniture.
HOW TO WORK BAMBOO.
Furniture constructed of bamboo is light and
dainty, and can be made by any person having a
knowledge of the use of a saw, rasp, screwdriver,
It is quite possible that some readers in their
first attempt at bamboo work may meet with only
slight success. Canes may split and fray up, plugs
may not hold, and altogether the work may not come
up to expectations, but these small difficulties
should not be allowed to discourage the beginner ;
practice alone makes perfect, and these little ex-
periences will impress upon the mind the three main
points in bamboo work : sharp tools, hot glue, and
accurate measurements. Apart from these points,
of course, other little difficulties will occur, but once
the worker is used to the materials he will soon be
at home with the work.
In bamboo work both tools and glue should be
of the best quality, and in good condition. A blunt
bradawl will split the cane, a dull saw will fray it,
and weak or cold glue will result in bad joints.
The outfit of tools required consists of hammer,
pincers, screwdriver, tenon saw, bradawls, and, in
short, of such wood-working tools as the amateur
usually possesses, with the addition of a very few
Special rasps, of sharper curve than ordinary ones,
are used (see the section, Fig. 2), for hollowing out
the ends of bamboo canes. The requisite curve
could not be obtained by using a knife. Bamboo
rasps are made in all sizes from ^ in. to l\ in., the
most useful being i in. , | in. , and 1 in. Bamboo work-
ers generally use a separate rasp for each size cane, as
it saves time, but a 1-in. rasp will do all the work
necessary ; at the same time, as rasps are not very
expensive, a |-in. rasp can be bought, and it will be
Fig. 2.— Section of Easp. Fig. 3. —
Mortise Holes in Bamboo. Fig. 4.
3 — Brace and Chuck.
The ordinary tools, such as hammer, tenon saw,
chisel, etc., do not need to be illustrated. A brace
and a supply of drills will be necessary, because
every nail that is driven into bamboo must have
How TO Work Bamboo.
a hole made to receive it, or the bamboo will split.
In many cases a long bradawl is a suitable tool with
which to make the hole, but often the brace and bit
are necessary ; the latter tools also are useful in cut-
ting dowel or mortise hole^. (Fig. 3); the hole is
Figs, o and 6. — Fretworker's
Cramps and Tables.
started by drilling, and then is finished with the
chisel, small file, or knife. The brace used may be
of a simple kind ; though the American brace shown
by Fig. 4 would serve the purpose well. Of course,
a supply of bits to be used with the brace will be
A handy appliance for the bamboo worker is a
fretworker's wooden cramp and table (Fig. 5).
When this appliance has a vice affixed to it as in
Fig. 6 it is perhaps still handier. The cramp is fixed
to any ordinary bench or table easily, and forms a
moat convenient work-table. A cramp and table not
having a vice may be obtained in two sizes, usually ;
the larger size has a table measuring 10| in. x 4^
in. ; but probably it will serve the bamboo worker's
purpose the better to construct such an appliance
slightly larger than the one mentioned.
A board, cut as shown by Fig. 7, will be useful in
rasping the ends of the canes ; it should be fixed so
that the vee projects beyond the edge of the bench.
— Bamboo Worker's Bench-board.
This board is not necessary if either of the fretwork-
ing appliances (Fig. 5 and 6) is obtained.
A mitre block or a mitre box will be necessary
when making joints at right angles. The uneven
bamboo may be rather difficult to hold true and
steady on the block, but the difficulty is not so great
in the mitre box, where the groove is of great
assistance. An ordinary mitre block is illustrated
by Fig. 8. To make it, a piece of deal, measuring
\\ in. X 3 in. is screwed down to a piece measuring
1^ in. X 6 in. ; both of the pieces are about 18 in.
long. Then the mitre cuts at angles of 45° to the long
edges are made with the saw, with which the bamboo
is to be cut. The mitre box (Fig. 9) has sides 4 in.
high, the strip screwed between them at the bottom
How TO Work Bamboo. 23
being 2| in. wide ; thus the usual sizes of bamboo
canes up to 2 in. or so can be accommodated. The
three pieces of wood used in making the mitre box
are each | in. thick, and 18 in. long. The mitre
Fig. 8.— Mitre Block.
cuts are made as in the mitre block above. If canes
of larger diameter than 2 in. are to be used, the
width of the mitre box must be increased accord-
Clamps will be needed to hold together freshly
glued and dowelled joints ; but a good substitute
for a clamp can be formed with a piece of string.
As is shown in Fig. 10, the string is tied loosely
round the pieces of bamboo to be held together, and
then the string is tightened by twisting, a stick
being inserted for this purpose. If the stick is made
just short enough to revolve in the available space,
the tightened string can be prevented from un-
twisting by gently pushing the stick through the
strings so that one of its ends rests on one of the
For cutting strijDs from bamboo canes, or for
Method of Cramping Bamboo Joints.
making grooves, a cutting gauge, Fig. 11, will come
The tenon saw should have fine teeth, and
should be kept well sharpened and set, the skin of
bamboo being particularly hard.
The other tools or appliances required are those
for use in bending bamboo chiefly. Bamboos are
bent principally by heating them in a smokeless
flame, the heat rendering them pliable, so that they
How TO Work Bamboo.
can be bent without much difficulty, the shape given
being retained when cold.
Either a Bunsen burner, if gas is available, or a
large spirit lamp should be obtained, though any
device that gives a fairlj^ large but smokeless flame
is suitable. A plumber's benzoline blow-lamp
The Bunsen burner (Fig. 12) will have to be
bought, probably, as will also the spirit lamp (Fig.
Fig. 12. — Bunsen Burner.
13) ; though a very good spirit lamp, more efficient
for bamboo working than is the bought article, on
account of its larger flame, can be made at home at
a cost of nofc more than three-halfpence. Fit a
piece of bamboo, about 5 in. or 6 in. long, into the
neck of a stone ginger beer bottle, and pass a wick
composed of loose cotton threads through the bam-
boo tube ; when the bottle has been half-filled with
methylated spirit, the lamp is ready for use.
The Bunsen burner is the best possible thing for
heating, only the heat must not be concentrated too
much to one part, but the burner kept continually
on the move.
How TO Work Bamboo.
A substitute for a spirit lamp or Bunsen burner
is a composite candle, well wrapped round with
paper from top to bottom ; this, when lighted, gives
a good flame, although rather smoky ; but with
care bamboo may be bent very well with it.
If a benzoline blow-lamp is used, it should be of
simple design ; that shown in Fig. 14 is as good as
lo.^Bendins^-iron in Block.
any for the purpose, ovving to its simplicity. Benzo-
line and spirit lamps, however, should be used only
when there is not a gas supply, the Bunsen burner
being much the best heating appliance.
A bending iron is necessary, and may be merely
a piece of thick iron wire, bent as in Fig. 15, and
fixed in a bench or plank ; but the iron shown by
] lending Iron.
Fig. IG is better ; this is made of |-in. rod, the ends
being flattened out, bent, and fixed in the bench as
in Fig. 17. The iron loop measures 2 in. across the
inside, and is from 5 in. to 7 in. long, though the
size may be increased or decreased according to
the size of the bamboo to be bent.
A bending iron is necessary, and it may be merely
of wood may be screwed, one o nthe top and the other
on the bottom of the fret-cutting board (Fig. 7), as
shown in Fig. 18. The strips s, which should be
of tough wood, rounded a little in the middle, should
be about 1 in. thick, l\ in. wide, and as long as the
board is wide.
To bend bamboo pass the end of the cane
through the loop of the bending-iron and under-
neath the top of the bench (Fig. IT), and with the
outside end of the cane in one hand, and the Bun-
sen burner or other heating appliance in the other,
bend the cane by a gentle downward pressure.
Fig. 17. — Method of Bending Bamboo.
while the part of its surface that is to form the inner
curve is made hot by allowing the flame to play
upon it as it is passed slowly up and down (see Fig.
17). Do not concentrate the heat, but move the
flame about so that the cane is not burnt. When
the cane is sufTiciently pliable, a gentle pressure
should be able to produce the required cui've ; then
a wet cloth should be rubbed up and down the cane
till it is cold, keeping the cane in the bending-iron
and continuing the downward pressure. Canes that
have been exposed very long to the Aveather, or that
are old, can seldom be bent satisfactorily. Fresh,
new canes as just imported bend the best.
When a sharp bend is required it will be better
How TO Work Bamboo.
to cool clown as above described when it is bent to
half the requisite curve, and resume the heating and
bending after sufficient time has been allowed for
the cane to cool. A cane that is bent too quickly
is liable to split
When heating preparatory to bending take care
not to burn the canes ; revolving them will pre-
vent this. It is best to make the bend on a part of
the bamboo between the knots. But if there must
be a knot where the bend is required, rasp the knot
flat on the side that will form the inside of the bend,
and (excepting in very thin canes) notch on the
same side with a saw about a quarter through. In
Fia;. IS. — Bendino-hoard for Eainboo.
any case, it will assist the bending operations if a few"
very slight saw cuts are made on the inner part of
the cane required to be bent. This prevents the
surface of the cane breaking away. It is not quite
possible to prevent a certain amount of flattening
at the bend ; but this can be remedied to a great ex-
tent by using a mallet judiciously when the bend is
thoroughly set, and the inner parts, where joined
on to other parts, may be slightly rasped to restore
the requisite roundness. If a bend is made too
acute, it can be opened out by heating in the flame
and pulling apart in the hands, or in the bending
hook. It is not possible to bend a bamboo cane to
a very acute angle without cutting out a V-shaped
piece to allow for the reduced length of the inner as
compared with the outer side of the cane. A slight
Ba mboo Wo r k.
bend is all that can be made if the cane is to be
uninjured or uncut. The bending must be done
very gradually. It is better to go by easy stages
if the cane is very large, hard, or tough. Of course,
very large and thick canes can scarcely be bent at
all. Canes stouter than \\ in. or If in. cannot be
bent satisfactorily ; here, joints must be made to
sei've the purpose.
When several pieces of bamboo are to be bent
to a uniform curve, the only method is to bend the
Fig. 19. — Bamboo Worker's Bench.
first piece to the required shape and then to use
it as a pattern, the other bends being tested by it.
If a complex bend is required, a drawing is often
made on a piece of wood or paper, and the bend ap-
plied to the drawing as the work proceeds.
Cane | in. in diameter may be bent into small
scrolls in the following manner. Soak the cane in
water for twelve or more hours, and then hold over
a Bunsen flame. When supple, wrap the cane round
a peg of the size wished, and tie it there till cold.
Many professional bamboo workers, instead of
using a bending iron, have a 2-in. hole, as shown in
Fig. 19 bored slantingly through a very strong
How TO Work B.
bench ; the inclination of the hole is shown by Fig.
20,\vhich is a section on line x y (Fig. 19). The cane to
be bent is inserted in the hole and treated as usual.
This is claimed to be the best method of bending, as
when using a bending- iron there is a liability of this
getting too hot, and so marking the cane. The
canes to be bent should be heavj^, though not more
than If in. in diameter, as the more substantial are
less liable to bulge or split than the lighter ones.
It is difficult to bend bamboo by the usual
method without the flame marking it ; but a method
Fis:. 20.— Section of Bench.
whi<;h answers when the canes must not be marked
is to soak them in boiling water, and whilst hot to
bend them as required. When cold the cane will
permanently have assumed the shape given it.
Bamboo canes may be rendered sufficiently
supple for being bent by steaming ; the time taken
to soften the bamboo can be shortened by employing
superheated steam. The bamboo is placed in the
steaming apparatus, the lid screwed close, and the
^ steam turned on. When the bamboo is softened,
thir^team is turned off ; directly the bamboo is re-
getl>^*.<i from the steam, it must be bent, and held so
be/^ A steam chest for bamboo is illustrated by Fig. 21.
The chest is made as follows : — Procure four pieces
of sound deal, 1 ft. wide by \\ in. thick, and about
3 ft. 6 in. long. Join the edges of these together, as
shown at Fig. 22, to form a box, firmly screwing the
joints and bedding them with thick white lead.
Close one end with a block firmly secured with
screws, and make a lid for the other end, as shown
at Fig. 21. The lid is a block a little larger than the
sectional area of the chest, with pieces fixed to the
sides to fit over the end of the chest. On each side
of the chest the lid is secured by a strap-
bolt, the screwed end of which passes through
the lid, and is fastened by a cross-plate and
Fig. 21. — Steam-chest for Bamboo,
two wing -nuts. The chest is connected to a steam
boiler by a small steam pipe, as shown at A (Fig. 21).
Place the wood in the chest, turn on the steam, and
proceed as before described. Do not screw on the
lid too tightly, but allow it to " blow " a little. It
must be remembered that though steam bending is
commonly employed for ordinary woods, profes-
sional bamboo workers but rarely make use of it.
The Bunsen burner and the bending iron give better
results at less expense of money and of time. The
steam method might have advantages for repetitioji
work, but it is doubtful whether the amateur ,
find it of any use at all. ^,V ot
The beginner probably will split many can^^^
his first attempts at bending. This is due, pert^ .
How TO Work Bamboo.
to too much heat, and consequent burning, or to
insufficient heat, in which case the cane does not
become pliable enough. Or perhaps the cane has
been bent too quickly ; a usual fault is that the heat
is concentrated too much. A safe plan is to apply
heat over a considerable surface and keep the
burner constantly on the move, then, with one hand
holding the end of the cane, by putting the pressure
on gradually the cane will give slightly. Occasion-
ally wipe the part heated with a wet rag, still keep-
ing the cane bept ; then apply more heat and
again the wet rag, and so on until the required bend
^'- 2^ Fig. 23
Fig-. 22._Joint of Steam-chest. Fig. 23.-Method of
As has been said, canes may be straightened in
the same way that they are bent ; a very convenient
tool for straightening bamboo is a piece of deal
about 2 in. square and about 16 in. long with a
square groove, l^ in. wide and 1 in. deep, cut
Obliquely across one of its sides (Fig. 23). The cane
to be straightened must first be made hot in the
flame of a Bunsen burner, then laid in the groove
by which it will be gripped, while the wooden tool is
used as a lever to straighten it.
The joints used in bamboo work are only a few
m number. For joining the ends of two canes to-
-et lier :it_ right an^es.in all cases a mitred joint is the
most .-ati^factory and easiest in working, and should
be ad. .pi 1 wherev-r practicable, leaving the bends
for flowing lines and curves, as shown in tlie many
examples given in the following pages. In forming
a mitred joint, the ends of the tw^o canes are
plugged with pieces of wood w^hich are glued in.
When the glue is quite hard, the mitres are cut on a
mitre block or in a mitre box with a tenon saw^, and
Fig. 24. —Mitred Joint in Bamboo. Fig. 25. — Hollowed
End of Cane. Figs. 26 and 27. — Tee Joints in Bamboo.
the two sawn surfaces then are placed together,^
glued, and further secured by fine nails or brads, in
tlie way shown jjy Fig. 24.
When a piece of bamboo is to be joined to an-
other piece at right angles to form a T, the end of
one piece is rasped out to fib the curvature or "*'"^
Either bef oiNe oi' af^ei;^'' ..
In this caseil^,4;'W0-'erl^J
other (see Fig. 25).
the end is plugged.
How TO Work Bamboo. 35
held together merelj^ by a nail passing through one
cane into the plugged end of the other. Fig. 26
shows a better method of making such a joint. The
hole, at the end of A is smoothed 2 in. or 3 in. deep to
receive the do^yel fixed in b, after which the end is
rasped out as shown at c, so that it fits evenly on b.
Glue should be used to make the joint secure. An-
other method, but one, however, which practically
is the same as the last, is to drill a hole in the side
of one piece, and to insert in this the plugged end of
the other ; secure with a wire nail (see Fig. 27).
-Tee Joint in Bamlioo.
Fiff. 29. — xVno-le Joint in
The best wood for dow^els is straight-grained
deal ; this is sawn into long, square strips, and
cut up into the special short lengths required, being
shaped to fit the hollow canes by means of a knife,
plane, or chisel.
Another method of forming a T- joint is shown in
Fig. 28. The end of one piece is plugged and shaped
as shown. A vee-piece is cut in the other, and the
joint made with glue and a fine nail.
Pieces joining at an angle other than a right angle
getl^Wrated by Fig. 29. Cut the end of the cane
^>st 3<E\proper angle, plug it with a piece of wood,
and then round it off with the rasp so that it fits
evenlj^ against the cane e. At the connecting point
sandpaper the varnish off the vertical bamboo rod,
the ghie holding better when the cane is thus
roughened. The joint can be further strengthened
by means of a nail or screw, as shown.
Fig. 30 illustrates the joint of diagonal pieces.
This is made in much the same way as described
for the joint illustrated by Fig. 26, the ends of the
two shorter rods being bored to receive the ends of
30. — Diao-onal Joint in Bamboo.
the dowel, which passes quite through the longer
cane, a hole having been bored to receive it.
Lengths of bamboo are jointed one to the other
in a straight line, either by glued plugs or by brass
ferrules. In joining two lengths at an angle it is
better to cut off one piece at the knot, as any differ-
ence in the thickness can then easily be rasped off.
The bay-pole joint shown by Fig. 31 saves a lot of
trouble in such a case. It is really a cup and ball
joint, and is made of wood, tortoised to imitate
bamboo ; at each end is an iron screw (wood thread)
How TO Work Bamboo.
and all that is to be done when formmg the joint
is to cut the bamboo the requisite length, allowing
for the joint, plug the ends with w^ood, and screw
the joint into them. They not only make the bay-
pole strong where the weakest point generally is,
but no template is required, as these joints adjust
themselves to any angle.
In running a rebate in a bamboo cane an ordinary
rebate plane may be used. The principal difficulty,
Fig. 31 Fig. 32
Fig. 31. — Bay-pole Joint. Fig. 32. — Method of Rebating
however, will be in the holding of the material while
using the plane ; but this can be overcome by pro-
ceeding as follows : — Secure a few little blocks to
the bench on each side of the cane as at a a, Fig. 32,
screw a lath with one of its edges straightened on
to the blocks, to press tightly on the top of the cane,
as at B. The edge of this w^ill form a guide for the
rebate plane c, and will enable the worker easily to
clean out the portion shown in black on Fig. 32.
If the rebate groove is to be " stopped " within
a few inches of each end, it may be cleaned
38 Bamboo IVork.
out with a chisel, and finished with a router, or " old
woman's tooth plane," using the lath B in this case
as a guide for both width and depth.
If it is desired to remove knots from the inside of
a length of bamboo to transform it into a tube an
iron rod may be made red hot and passed through
the bamboo. The thin knots in the inside by this
means should be burnt through.
Bad joints in bamboo work can be filled in with
a mixture of sawdust and hot glue made to the
consistency of thin paste, all surplus paste being
cleaned off before it dries. Cracks in bamboo canes
can be filled with shoemakers' heelball. A lighted
taper is applied to the heelball, and sufficient al-
lowed to drop into the flaw. After it has set, rub
with a clean cloth until the surface is perfectly
level. Another mixture for filling in bad joints is
one made by melting equal parts of resin and bees-
wax in an old ladle or spoon ; yellow ochre or umber
is added to match the colour of the bamboo. Press
the composition well in with a piece of wood, and
clean off when cold with a sharp knife or chisel.
Touch up afterwards with transparent spirit vamish.
A filling for screw holes in bamboo is plaster of
PariSj mixed with water and applied immediately
it is made. When dry it can be glass-papered
smoo'h and coloured with chagon's blood, gamboge,
etc. ; or ochres and umbers can be mixed with the
wet plaster to give the desired tints.
Yellow^ bamboo cane is mottled or marked by burn-
ing at frequent intervals with a Bunsen burner, or by
partly covering the cane with a thin paste of whiting
and water, and then passing the cane through a
flame, afcerwards removing the whiting. The paste
protects the covered parts from burning. Tortoise-
shell bamboo canes are so cheap, however, that it
does nob pay to mottle the yellow ones.
Light canes are darkened by scorching them in
the flame of a Bunsen burner or spirit lamp. Another
How TO Work Bamboo. 39
way is to coat them with ordinary enamel paint. In
the trade, to brighten the colour a hard varnish is
used diluted with an equal bulk of methylated
spirit. Bamboo will not take stain or dye as does
ordinary wood ; so any colour that cannot be ob-
tained by scorching the cane must be applied in the
form of coloured varnish. Professionals generally
colour bamboo furniture after it is made up by apply-
ing suitable pigments, as vandyke brown, brown
umber, or black mixed with French polish or spirit
varnish thinned out with methylated spirit, finishing
with clear varnish. Light coloured canes that have
been stored in a damp place to render them soft may
be stained brown with a mixture of vandyke brown
and American j^otash in hot Avater.
A transparent varnish for bamboo is made by
dissolving 3 oz. of white shellac in 10 fluid oz. of
methylated spirit ; this is applied to the bamboo
with a camel-hair brush. Any good white shellac
\ arnish is suitable, or the following will give good
results: — (1) Dissolve 4 oz. of fine picked gum
sandarach in 1 pt. of methylated spirit, and, after
straining, add 2 oz. of finest pale turpentine var-
nish. (2) Dissolve 2 oz. of powdered bleached
shellac in two-thirds of a pint of methylated spirit,
and then filter to arrest any impurities that were
present in the shellac ; then add very gradually one-
third of a pint of metliylated spirit. A cheap var-
nish suitable for bamboo work may be made with
common shellac, 8 oz. ; gum thus, 2 oz. ; resin, 2
oz,, and methylated spirit, 1 qt. This can be sponged
on, instead of brushed on, if desired.
Bamboo can be darkened by coating it with a
dark varnish made according to recipe No. 2 above,
substituting, however, orange, or a still darker
shellac for the bleached shellac there mentioned.
To colour ordinary wooden sticks to match bam-
boo give them a rubber of polish or coat of spirit
varnish to impart a yellow tint and stop suction.
40 Bamboo Work.
Mix some vandyke brown in spirit varnish, and mix
the latter in spirit till it gives the tone required ;
then stipple on with a camel-hair brush, the grada-
tions of tone and knotty appearance being gained by
dabbing the colour on several times w^here required.
When dry smooth with fine, w^orn glasspaper or
coarse rag, and coat with spirit varnish ; apply care-
fully so as to prevent the colour running.
As so many of the joints in bamboo w^ork depend
upon the adhesive power of glue, eveiy care should
be taken that this is of good quality, and is made
properly. The natural enamel on bamboo canes is
no!} conducive to strength when glue is used on joints,
and so this hard enamel should be rasped off before
applying the glue. Much depends, also, upon the
manner in which the glue is made. It does not suffice
to place the glue in water, and at once bring to the
boil. The proper way of making glue is first to
break the cakes of glue into small pieces ; place the
broken glue in the glue-pot or in a gallipot, and
cover wntb water. Put aside for about six hours ; if
after an hour or so all the water is absorbed, add
some more. At the end of the six hours, pour off
any unabsorbed water, place the vessel in a water-
bath, and gently boil for a short time, or until the
glue is all dissolved, and forms a quickly-running
liquid. Use it as hot as possible. Do not boil the
same glue more than twice, as then its strength goes.
After the first boiling, allow to get cold, and form
a jelly ; then, as it may be required, pieces of the
jelly may be cut off and heated. Thus a stock of
reliable glue is always at hand. The cake glue
should be nearly transparent, with but little taste
or smell, free from spots or cloudiness, and of a
deep brown colour. The adhesive power of bone
glue is in proportion to its consistency and elas-
ticity after it has been soaked in water for some
hours and has absorbed many times its own weight
of the water.
A VERY favourite employment for bamboo, and one
for whicH the canes are admirably fitted, is the con-
struction of fancy tables. With the aid of some few
supplementary materials, can be made a large
variety of tables, includhig afternoon tea tables, plant
tables, work-tables, etc.
Bamboo furniture is in itself very artistic, and
is much seen in recently furnished houses, more
especially in drawing-rooms, where a touch of
Eastern art is given by the many coloured silks and
Japanese fans ; if strongly and carefully made, bam-
boo furniture will be found very durable indeed,
as well as handsome, and will well repay the trouble
In the instructions to be given in this and follow-
ing chapters, it is assumed that the reader has mas-
tered the elements of cane-bending and joint-
making, upon which information is given in Chap-
ter II. Limitations of space will not allow the
repetition of this instruction ; therefore, as the
examples of bamboo work are briefly described and
illustrated in succession, the reader must refer for
details of the practical w^ork and processes to the
explanations given in the second chapter.
A simply-made bamboo table is illustrated by
Fig. 33. It consists of three Japanese lacquered
trays. A, b, and c, each 18 in. square, with four
uprights of bamboo about 1 in. thick and 28 in.
long. Bend out the legs at the bottom as described
in Chapter II., and straighten the canes, if required.
Mark the canes at distances of 10 in. and 20 in. from
the top, and saw each one quite squarely into
three pieces, being careful to keep the pieces of
each cane b}^ themselves, because the least slant will
spoil the work. With a brace and bit about the size
of the dowel it will be necessary to use, bore holes
Fig-. 33. — Three-tray Bamboo Table.
in the four corners of two of the trays. Take the
four portions of bent cane that are to form the legs,
and into their top ends fit dowels, which must
Fig-. 34. -Support for Table Top.
project about 3 in. ; put each dowel through the
holes bored in the tray, glue the parts, and join on
the middle lengths of bamboo. Put dowel pins in the
tops of these, and fit on the next tray, and then the
other four lengths ; the tops of these las': lengths
should be plugged, but the plugs should not project.
Cut two pieces of deal about \ in. thick and 2 in. wide,
as shown in Fig. 34. With brace and bit bore holes
half through to take the tops of the bamboo rods,
which should fit in tightly ; glue in position. Glue
on the top tray, holding it in its place with a pair of
joiners' hand-screws until set.
Another example is shown by Fig. 35 ; the frame
of this should be made of about \\ in. bamboo rods.
yig, 35.— Bamboo Tabic with Shelf Brackets
Fig. 36.— Shelf Bra -ket for Table.
and the projecting shelf brackets of a})0ut 1 in.
rods. Tlie following are suitable measurements :
lieight, 28 in. ; length, 21 in. ; depth, 12 in. ; shelf
brackets, 10| in. square. The table is made with
the two sides forming flat sections, A A and B b. The
four shelf brackets should now be made, and Fig. 36
shows their construction. The cross-bars for joining
the two flat sections together should be cut and
plugged, and as these should be of f in. bamboo, it
■\vould be better to bore holes and fit them to the sec-
tions direct, similarly with the shelf brackets. A screw
with head countersunk Mill hold each corner secure.
It is advisable to fix the panels direct into the
frame by taking out a section of the cane just suffi-
cient for the panels to fit in ; or they can be beaded
in with rattan cane. The projecting ends of the
table top should be 3 in. long, and be plugged and
finished with hardwood terminals. A pretty finish
Fig. 37. — Bamljoo Occasional Table with Flap
to this table can be given by gilding the knots or
by applying gold paint ; if preferred, instead of
panels, plain wood can be used, and this may have
a coat of enamel paint to harmonise with the colour
of the rest of the table.
Bamboo Table with Shelf.
Tables or other bamboo structures that are top-
heavy have holes drilled in the lower ends of the
legs and moulten lead poured in. Plaster of Paris
may replace lead for this purpose.
For the occasional table shown by Fig. 37 use
stout baniboos for the legs, and smaller canes for
the cross-pieces. These latter can be inserted into
holes bored into the legs, and then glued and pinned.
The legs may be plugged at the bottom if desired,
or canes with roots may be used. The top can be
of deal or pine, covered with Japanese matting, the
legs being let into holes. If the top has battens at
the ends these will add strength, and form a better
holding substance in which the legs can fit. The
flap is supported as described on p. 52. Papier-
mache trays make excellent shelves for this purpose.
The table shown by Fig. 38 may conveniently
Top Batten and Leg of Bamboo Table.
have a length of 3 ft., a width of 2 ft., and a height
of 2 ft. 7 in. It has so much in common with other
tables described in this chapter that it is not neces-
sary to describe its construction in detail ; its top
is a lacquer panel, or it may be of wood covered with
fancy tiles ; the shelf is of thin wood, stained and
varnished, or it may be another panel.
Tables having tops framed in bamboo may have
the legs attached to them in the following way : —
The table top rests on strips of deal or other suitable
wood, in which are bored holes to receive the top
ends of the legs, which are glued and fastened with
a sprig as indicated in Fig. 39. The strips should
be halved and glued together where it is necessary
to join them, and they then are secured to the under-
side of the top with a few screws. The halving of
one of the strips is shown at Fig. 40,
The corners of a bamboo hexagon-shaped table
top are cut on a special mitre block, and the
Fig-. 40. — Halved Batten for Bamboo Table Top.
simplest way of cutting the mitres is to con-
struct a mitre block as shown by Fig. 41, having its
saw kerfs at an angle of G0°, as indicated. < It is only
in the angle of the saw kerfs that this block differs
from the one shown by Fig. 8, p. 23.
The bamboo occasional table illustrated in ele-
vation by Fig. 42 is made chiefly of l^-in. bamboo.
riof. 41. — Block for Hexagonal Joints.
The table top is \ in. thick and 1 ft. 9 in. square out-
side, with the corners chamfered and a hollow cut
in each side, as shown by Fig. 43, an alternative
design for the top being shown in the half-plan, Fig.
44. The sides are fitted with strips of jo-in. split
bamboo, as illustrated by Fig. 45, and a strip of thin
cane runs round the edge. The frame for "the
legs is 1 ft. 6| in. square at the bottom, and 1 ft.
0^ in. square at the top, the distances being
measured from the centres of the bamboos. The
four legs are l^-in. canes, and are connected, at
distances of 8^ in. and 1 ft. lO^iij. from the bottom,
by l^-in. rails about 1 ft. 5 in. and 1 ft. 2 in. long re-
spectively. These rails are fitted with plugs and
brads. The two strips b (Figs. 42 and 46), 1 ft.
Bamboo Occasional Table.
3 in. long, 2 in. wide, and \ in. thick, have circular
recesses into which the plugged ends of the tops of
the legs are fixed. The legs are then screwed from
above, as shown in Fig. 46, and the pieces b fixed
to the top. Eight stays of f-in bamboo about 6| in.
long are fitted in at c (Fig. 42), eight about 1 ft.
long at D, and four about 1 ft. 8 in. long at e. Eight
fillings of ^-in. bamboo are fixed at f.
The table top can be of walnut, or it can be black
enamelled on a wood foundation with gilt ornamen-
tal figures. Care must be taken that the holes are
drilled before the nails are inserted to prevent the
bamboo splitting. Fig. 47 is a horizontal section
just above the lower rails, and shows the under
shelf ; this shelf is. \ in. thick, and fixed as shown
by Fig. 48 ; it should be of the same wood as the top.
Fig. 43. — Table Top. Fig. 44. — Alternative Half-design for
Table Top. Fig. 4o. — Section of Table Top Edge.
The ends of the rails and stays should be plugged
before being fixed in position.
The construction of a four-flap bamboo tea table
is shown by Fig. 49, p. 50. The movable shelves are
of vv^ood or lacquer, the top is of wood covered with
Japanese matting or with a lacquer panel, whilst
the under shelf is a lacquer panel. The design of
tea table illustrated has becoiue very popular. The
table is 2 ft. 3 in. high. Select four l|-in. canes and
bend out the toes and cut off to 26 in. long. In all
such cases the canes should not be cut off to the
precise length until the bending is done, as the bend
cannot be made quite at the end of the cane. The
top end of the legs must receive plugs 3 in. long well
Four cross-rails, 11^ in. long (l.? in. being allowed
for fitting), should now be cut from l|-in. canes.
Fiir. 4 6
Fig-. 48 Fig-. 17
Fii^. 46.— Juint betweun Table Top and Leg-. Fig. 47. —
Section of Table showing Shelf. Fig. 48. — Section show-
ing- Shelf Joint.
The ends of these four rails must be hollowed and
dowelled, or otherwise fitted to the four legs
as described on pp. 34 and 3o ; care must be taken
to finish all the rails to the same length. The four
legs and the four rails will then be fitted together,
and framed up as two flat sections.
The system of forming flat sections in bamboo
work is to be recommended. In general, a section
may consist of four rods, framed together to form
a square or oblong ; these rods are fitted together,
and the ghie allowed to dry, before the different sec-
tions are united to form the completed article.
Care must be taken to make the various flat sections
perfectly symmetrical and alike, so that they will go
-Bam"boo Tea Table with Flai-S.
together quite true. One of the best ways of testing
a section is by measurement from point to point
"^'Tor^the flat sections of the table in question, the
canes with the largest bore should be used and care
must be taken to bore the legs for dowels, so that
^Bamboo Tables. 51
the bent toes will point outwards from the four
comers of the table when it is put together. The
large bore canes are chosen for the two sections, so
that the dowels used for fastening them together
may be as large as possible, and for this reason
the holes drilled in the legs to receive them should
be as near the size of the dowel as possible,
so that little trimming down will be required.
Glue, clamp up the sections, and leave a few hours
until the glue is set. Now cut off four rails 15^ in.
long (1^ in. is allowed for fitting). With these fi'ont
rails the two sections will be framed together. The
holes bored to take the dowels for these must be
considerably smaller than those of the four side-
rails ; they should be as small as circumstances will
allow, as these holes must cut into the dowels al-
ready glued in without dividing them ; these second
dowels should not go quite through the first ones.
The movable flaps may now be made and fitted ;
deal, |-in. thick, planed up on one side, 9 in. by 9 in.
for the end flaps, and 13 in. by 9 in. for the side flaps,
is generally used for this purpose. The top of the
table, 15 in. by 21 in., can be made from 1^ in. or
|-in. deal, planed up on one side.
The Japanese matting for covering the top, lower
shelf, and movable flaps, must be prepared for
gluing by being roughened on the wrong side with
sandpaper or the flat side of a rasp. The matting
may now be cut to the required sizes, leaving a little
margin for final trimming round the edges.
The prepared wood must then be coated well
with hot glue, and the matting put on ; air bubbles
are rubbed out, and then it is weighted down and
left a few hours to drj^ When the glue is set the
matting must be trimmed round the wood with a
sharp knife, care being taken not to fray it at the
edge. The edges of the top and shelf and flaps
must now be beaded with split bamboo, mitred at
the corners and fastened on with l|-in. panel pina
52 Bamboo Work.
(the edging should stand slightly above the surface
of the matting) ; an angle will thus be formed to
receive a thin bead of white cane, which will fill
up any imperfection there may be in the edges of
the matting. The cane should be carefully mitred
at the corners, and fastened down with fin.
If, instead of covering the top with matting,
the top is to be formed of a lacquer panel, cut a
board the size of the lacquer about \ in. thick,
screwing two fillets across where the legs will come
(see Fig. 50), cutting with a centre-bit four holes
about halfway through, for the top of the legs to fit
into ; then fix it on the frame with glue and bamboo
pins. Fix the lacquer panel on the top with a few
screws inserted from the underside of the wood,
taking care that the points do not come through ;
then edge round with the |-in. bamboo ; mitre the
corners and fix with bamboo pins into the wooden
top, and finish off the top with an edging of split
black beading cane. Similarly the lower shelf
may be of lacquer fitted in between the traverses,
secured in like manner with pins through the bam-
boo and edged with beading cane.
The flaps must now be attached to the table.
Thick 2-in. wire nails must be driven into the two
back corners of each flap, projecting ^ in. to form
pins whicli will slide in slots cut in the sides of the
legs for their reception. These slots must be 5 in.
long, and commence \ in. below the top cross-rails.
To make them, first bore holes with a large bradawl,
where the top and bottom of the slots should come,
and clear out between these holes with a knife, or
with a cutting gauge (Fig. 11, p. 25). The slot should
be I in. wide when finished. The best material to use
for the struts is ^-in. rounded dowel wood, or, fail-
ing that, thick rattan cane. They must be 7 in.
long, and the ends fitted with steel or brass screw-
eyes. Two similar screw-eyes will be fixed in the
top cross-rails of the table, and the struts attached
by looping the eyes together. The other ends of
the struts will be attached in a similar manner to
the e^es screwed into the flaps ; the exact position
of these will have to be obtained by trial ; they
must be fixed so that the flaps hang perfectly level.
If desu'ed the struts may be fixed with screw eyes to
the legs of the table instead of to the cross-rails ; the
choice is immaterial.
For fixing on the top, two battens, 2 in. wide by
f in. thick by 14 in. long, should now be fastened
into the tops of the legs by 3-in. thick wire nails
driven into the plugs, and to these the top must be
attached with glue and,f-in. screws.
The flaps, instead of being covered with matting.
Fig. 50. — Underside of Tea Table Top.
may be of lacquer ; this is mounted on thin wood
edged with |-in. split bamboo and beading round
the top. The flaps are just long enough to work
easily betw^een the legs. When not in use the
flaps can be folded down flush with the legs by
raising the pivot ends.
To finish the table, clean off superfluous glue and
apply some good spirit varnish. The undersides
of the top, shelf, and flaps should be stained. A
pennyworth of vandyke brown and a pennyworth of
ammonia in a pint of water make a good stain for
A writing table is illustrated by Fig. 51. The
most convenient measurements for the writing
table would be : height (exclusive of outside rail-
ing) '1 ft. 6 in., depth 2 ft., and length 3 ft. 2 in.
Fig 51 shows the desk complete and finished ; whilst
Fig. 52 shows a skeleton of the top part, which con-
sists of a simple traj', the side of which is cut for a
drawer to be inserted. Two drawers would look as
well as one, and would be equally easy to make. If
two drawers are to be employed, runners, A A, Fig.
52, will be required.
The top may be of walnut wood, stained and
polished, and the edges are rounded and polished
and well finished-off. The bamboos round the
sides of the desk will be required to be neatly fas-
51. — Bamboo Writing Table. Fig. 52. — Tray and
Drawer of Table.
tened, as also the rail ; and this can be done by
running small screws and nails under the sides of
A combined hall seat and table in bamboo is
shown by Figs. 53 and 54 ; 1^-in. canes are used in
its construction. The two front feet should be toed
out and cut off 25 in. long, and the back feet are of
the same length, but straight. Four pieces, each
2 ft. 9 in. long, and four pieces, each 14 in. long,
should be cut to form the rails ; 3 in. of these lengths
is allowed on each rail for chisel pointing, mortising,
and fitting, thus making the inside distance between
the front legs 2 ft. 6 in. At distances of 5 in. and
16 in. from the bottom bore the two front legs to
receive the dowels, with which all the rails should be
plugged. Then fit together as a flat section, repeat-
ing the operation with the two back legs and long
rails, squaring and clamping with string, and glue-
ing. While the sections set, proceed with the con-
struction of the seat arms which are made from
Fjo-. 3.— Combined Hall Seat and Table.
beech, 16 in. long, 2^ in. across, and \\ in. thick.
A narrow groove is cut through the arm from the
centre to near the end to admit a bolt, as is shown
by the thick lines on the arms, Fig. 53. The two
pieces (Fig. 55) by which the table top is fixed to
the arms must be 16 in. long and 1 in. thick. The
table top is of |-in. deal, 34 in. long and 18 in. wide.
One side should be planed, sandpapered, and
stained to form the back of the seat. The top should
now be placed in the position it will occupy on the
seat arms, with the supports shown at Fig. 55, and the
places marked so that they can be screwed into the
proper positions. It is better to screw through the
top and into the support. A pencil passed through
the groove at the centre will mark the position at
which the hole is to be bored in the support to
receive the bolt. The countersunk head of the bolt
should be placed at the inside of the arm. The
sides, ends, and bottom of the box should be pre-
pared from fin. deal ; they are fixed in position by
Bamboo Tables. 57
panel pins driven through holes bored in the legs
and rails of the frame. One side of the wood should
be planed to form the inside of the box. Japanese
matting should now be cut for the sides of the box
and the table top. This should be roughed with
sandpaper or the flat side of a bamboo woiker's
rasp to afford a tight hold for the glue. A piece of
1-in. wood forms the seat, one side being planed up
and the other side matted. The seat should be
slipped round with ^-in. split bamboo, and a small
Fig. 5.5.— Table Top Support.
brass pull added for lifting purposes. The seat
should be hinged on two thick wire pins, in the
same manner as are the doors of the combined cup-
board and bookcase described on p. 108. A piece of
wood should be screwed along the front and sides
of the inside of the box to form a rest for the front
of the seat. To convert the table into a seat, push
the table-top along by the front edge until the bolts
reach the end of the slot, when the top will tip up
and form a back. The whole should be completed
by the application of a coat of spirit varnish, recipes
for which are given on p. 39.
BAMBOO CHAIRS AND SEATS.
Bamboo chairs require to be constriicled with the
maximum of strength, because the strains to which
they are subject are far greater than those endured
by tables, fancy stands, and similar pieces of furni-
ture. The joints, being the weakest parts, must be
made very carefully ; and the materials used must
be of the best.
Fig. 56 show^s a bamboo chair complete. The
bending of the legs, made from l|-in. or l|-in canes,
is the first work. Those at the front are simply
'' toed out," as in making a table, and cut off 16 in.
long. The leg and back must now be bent as in
Fig. 57. This figure should be drawn out full size
on paper and the bamboo bent and applied to the
drawing time after time until the correct shape is
obtained ; in the workshop a templet leg is always
kept. Three lengths each of 13 in. should now be
cut, 2 in. being allowed for fitting ; they form the
rails for the back of the chair. These rails should be
hollowed, dowelled, glued, and cramped up, and the
section put aside to set. A piece of l^-in. cane 14 in.
long (2 in. being allowed for fitting) must now be
cut off to form the rail for the front legs. Previous
to fitting, the two legs should be dowelled at the
top. The rail may be fitted and dowelled, and to
form a section a piece of wood may be fastened tem-
porarily across the top by driving two nails through
the wood and into the dowelled legs ; see Fig. 58.
As the nails must be taken out before the seat is
fixed, do not drive them right home. The filling
of the chair back is made from wood 6 in. by 4 in.,
covered with matting, and made as described on pp.
82 and 83. This centre is a design of common occur-
Bamboo Chairs and Seats.
rence in bamboo work. Two pieces of l^-in. cane,
each 13 in. long (2 in. for fitting), should also be
prepared for the two side rails and a piece of |-in.
wood cut out for the seat ; see Fig. 59. The two back
corners should be gouged out to fit the round of the
back legs. The two sections should now be fitted
Fig. 59 Fig. 56
Fig-. oQ. — Bamboo Chair. Fig. o7. — Chair Leg and Back.
Fig. 58.— Front Chair Section. Fig. 59. — Chair Seat.
and joined together. A hole should be made
through each of the legs with a small shell bit 16^ in.
from the bottom, and the back of the seat should
be attached to the legs by screws. The top should
be attached to the front legs by screwing through
into the dowelled legs, the temporary piece of wood
having previously been removed.
While the frame is setting, eight stays (a, Fig. 56)
may be prepared, one end of each being fitted to the
legs and the other to the bottom of the seat ; fix
them with glue and fine beading pins. Also fix the
plaque or filling for the back. The seat should
be covered widi Jaiian se ma ing, unless h has been
decided to upholster it, and finished with a slip-
ping of split bamboo, and an inside bead of white
Fig. 60. —Bamboo Corner Seat. Figs. 61 and 62. —End
Sections for Corner Seat.
cane, as is described for the tea table on p. 52.
The tops should be dowelled and fitted with ter-
minals, and, except for cleaning off and varnishing,
the chair is complete.
A corner seat ready framed up is shown by
Fig. 60. From l^-in. or l^-in. canes cut three pieces,
each 2 ft. 9 in. long, and one piece 18 in. long, to
form the four legs, and eight pieces, each 16 in.
long (2 in. for fitting), to form the rails. Fit up to
Figs. Gl and 62, and taking care to place the middle
Bamboo Chairs and Seats.
rail in Fig. 62 | in. higher than the top rail in Fig.
61, as the seat in front rests upon the front rail,
while it is screwed into position through the back
centre rails. While the two sections are setting
make the plaques or fillings and the seat, this being
14 in. square. Fit and dowel the other rails, and
when the sections are dry frame the whole up,
taking care that the two back centre rails are | in.
higher than the two front rails. When the frame is
dry, fit on the eight stays, fix in the plaques, and
Fi''-. Q'i. — Bamboo Settee
fasten on the bottom. Plug the tops of the uprights,
put on terminals, clean off, and varnish.
Fig. 63 illustrates a settee, and Figs. 64 and 65
show its front and back sections. Make up these
from 1^-in. or Ij-in. canes, fii'st bending out the
toes for the three front legs. The eight side rails
may be 15 in. long (2 in. for fitting). When the
sections are dry, fit up and put the frame together.
Fig. 63 shows a rush seat, but, if preferred, either
plain or upholstered matting can be substituted.
The seat is made to fit between the four rails, and is
screwed in position. Strong staj^s should be used
all round the settee. Finish by cleaning off glue,
etc., and then coat with white shellac spirit varnish.
A chair or settee for two persons is illustrated
Fig. 64. — Front Section for Settee. Fig-. 65. — Back Section
by Fig. 66 ; the seat and back are composed of
flat strips of bamboo let into slots, forming a sort
of spring cushion. The strips of flat bamboo are
obtained from between the joints of very large canes,
Bamboo Double Chair or Settee.
after well steaming the canes are hammered flat
with a mallet on the rough side. Strips can seldom
be obtained wider than 2 in. Fig. 67 shows back por-
tion of the chair, Fig. 68 showing, the underside of
Ba mbo Cha IRS a nd Sea ts.
the seat. Care must be taken that the chair is
firmly fixed together, or it will creak if a heavy per-
Fig. 67.— Settee Back. Fig. 68. — Under side of Settee Seat.
son uses it. The ends of the arms look ^Yell if
finished off with turned boxwood plugs with tassels
Fig. 69.— Child's High Chair. Fig. 70.— Foot-rest Support.
hanging from them (see A, Fig. 66). The legs should
be l)ent outwards at the lower ends to add strength,
lightness, and comfort.
A design for a child's higii chair, with tray, is
shown by Fig. 69, p. 63. Make the front legs and arms
in one length ; this gives additional strength, and
there is no difficulty in bending the bamboo. The
four legs should be well splayed out at the bottom
to avoid the risk of the child tilting the chair either
backwards or forw^ards. Every joint should be
dowelled, glued, and pinned, and such pieces as the
three uprights in the back should be let directly
into the frame.
1.— Baby's Folding Chair.
The tray is best formed from an oblong Japanese
tray, and can be cut to shape, leaving a ledge on
the square side. Support the tray on small pegs
let into the front arms. For the sides of the tray
bend a piece of 1-in. bamboo to the required shape
and hinge it to the back legs with bamboo pegs or
neat bolts and nuts. The chair is 3 ft. high over
all; the seat is 2 ft. fiom the floor, 11 in. wide by
12 in. deep, and is cut out of a plain deal and covered
with Japanese matting, the edges being finished off
with split beading cane. There is ample room for
a loose cushion if required.
Should a foot-rest be wanted, support it on
Bamboo Chairs and Seats.
brackets let into the front legs. For each bracket
will be required two ^-in, canes, one 4 in. long and
the other about 6 in. long. The shorter one is
do welled into the chair leg at right angles ; the
longer one is dowelled into the leg about 3^ in.
below the other one at an angle of about 45°, its
free end being joined to the free end of the shorter
cane (see Fig. 70, p. 63). On these brackets, the foot
board, if one is required, may rest. The risk of
the chair tilting forward is increased by the toot-
Fig. 72. — Bamboo Rocking Chair.
rests which are not desirable additions. The legs
should be weighted with lead as described on p. 44.
A baby's folding chair, having a carpet seat, may
be made after the style of Fig. 71. The joints, a to c
and A to B, must be of such a length that when the
trestle folds up the back falls backwards and lies par-
allel with the straight legs, a, b, 0, d are the four
points on which the chair folds, and, with the excep-
tion of joint D, the bamboos can be plugged, and so
long as the holes are made without splitting, this
will be found strong enough, as the bars, or tra-
verses, on which the seat is fastened, take part of
the srain. Use small bolts and nuts with a washer
at each side for the joints, l^-in. bamboo for the
trestle part;, and 1-in. for arms and bars.
The rocking chair shown by Fig. 72, p. 65, has
beech rockers which are made in two parts from
If-in. wood. The two pieces A for the base can be
joined together either with four birch or bamboo
rails, 15 in. long w^hen finished, and the front should
have casters. The top rockers b are 17 in. long, and
form the base on which the sides of the chair will be
built ; 1^-in. or \\-\Vi. canes should be used for this
work. The two uprights should be fixed to the
rocker with hardwood dowels, fitted into holes
bored in the rocker at one end and into the hollow
tube of thv3 upright at the other end. These dowels
must be a perfect, fit, as upon them the stability of
the ch.iir greatly depends. The two rails for the
side and arm of the chair should be fitted, filled,
and, after the uprights have been glued and fixed,
screwed into position with round-headed screws.
A bamboo cane should be bent as at c, and fixed
with nails as a stay between the arm and back of
the chair. The herringbone filling (see p. 99) between
the arm and bottom rail now is fixed. The pieces
for this w^ork, after being fixed, should be filled with
dowels so as to strengthen the arms. The two sec-
Bambvo Chairs and Seats. 67
tions when set should be joined together with the
six cross rails, which should be 15 in. long when
finished. The rails on which the upholstering is
fastened are filled right through with deal dowels to
give a hold for the nails. Add the herringbone fill-
ing to the back, and after the upholstering is done,
the chair will be ready for fixing to the base with two
special rocking-chair springs.
The framework of a bamboo couch is shown by
Fig. 73. Great strength is necessary, and so every
joint must be dowelled. The couch is shown hav-
ing arms with root ends, which add much to the
finish and cost but little, the bent arm having a
root at both ends, one being, of course, a false one
plugged on. The legs should be of if-in. or 1^-in.
bamboo, and care must be taken in bending them
at the top end, as it is difficult to bend such thick
cane without injuring it. The seat consists of f-in.
deal joined to the required width, fitted within the
frame, and secured with 3-in. wire pins through
the bamboo, and further with bamboo stays running
from the legs to underneath the seat. Intermediate
work, such as the pieces between the main frame-
work, need not be dowelled, but simply plugged
and rasped out to fit, and secured with glue and
pins. Rasp the surface to be glued, otherwise
the glue will not hold. In the event of fixed up-
holstering being required, rough wood frames will
do instead of the filling-in work to fit within the main
work, lining them with good canvas and webbing.
Saddle-bags or velvet hide much that should other-
wise be the charm of bamboo furniture, and a
better effect is obtained by making any upholstery
detachable ; thus for the couch, use a loose seat and
several cushions. The couch should be from 4 ft.
6 in. to 6 ft. long, accoi'ding to requirements, and
from 21 in. to 24 in. back to front. Finish off w^ith
spirit varnish, or, better still, by French polishing.
BAMBOO BEDROOM FURNITURE.
There is no limit to the number of articles of furni-
ture that can be constructed of bamboo ; and it is
not at all impossible to furnish any particular room
in a house with suites of furniture made almost en-
tirely with this material. This chapter will describe
the construction of the more important furniture
found generally in the bedroom or dressing room.
A bamboo bedstead may be about 6 ft. 6 in. long by
4, — Foot of Bamboo Bedstead.
3 ft. wide. Fig. 74 shows the foot of such a bedstead.
Figs. 75 and 76 are alternative designs for the head.
The framework of each of these sections must be
made from stout l|-in. to 2-in. canes, and great care
must be taken in making the joints and seeing that
the dowels are a good lit. a (Figs. 74 to 76) is a
piece of beech 7 in. wide and 1^ in. thick. This
must be fitted in position 1 ft. above the ground
before the filling work is commenced, and should
be securely fastened with round-headed screws
passed through the legs and cross rails into the
wood. The strength of the bedstead in a great
Bamboo Bedroom Furniture. 69
measure depends on the firmness of this piece of
wood, as on it are fastened the angles by which
the head and foot are stretched. The filling work
next can be proceeded with, care being taken that
every joint is strong and a perfect fit. Fig. 75 shows
a design suitable for an upholstered back, 7 ft. 9 in.
high ; if preferred, similar work to that shown in
Fig. 75.— Head of Bamboo Bedstead.
Fig. 76 can be used. For the bedstead bottom, iron
fittings, similar to those used for wood bedsteads, are
advised. Fig. 77 is a sketch of the iron angle, and
the position in which the angles are placed is indi-
cated sufficiently by b, Fig. 75. The iron angles are
securely fastened to the wood with screws, and the
stretchers and laths are attached in the usual
Fig. 78 shows a child's bamboo cot, which will
be found easy of construction, light, and strong.
As illustrated, the comers of cot and the stand are
made with root-end canes, but brass knobs could be
substituted for the roots if preferred. The cot itself
has a length of 3 ft., is 16 in. wide at top, tapering to
12 in. wide at bottom, and 15 in. deep. Webbing is
not required for the bottom, as bamboo traverses or
cross-pieces answer the same purpose and help to
Fig. 76, — Head of Bamboo Bedstead. Fig. 77
for Bamboo Bedstead.
keep the cot rigid. The comer posts of the cot ex-
tend a few inches above and below the top and
bottom bars, in order that they can be properly
do welled into the former. The framework of the
cot — that is the corner uprights, rails, and inter-
mediate uprights — should be of l^-in. bamboo,
either brown or tortoise-shell, whilst the filling-
in work should be of |-in. or 1 in. bamboo.
The centre upright for the stand is of 1^-in. bamboo,
the top being 2 ft. 9 in. from the floor. The legs (I5 in.
Bamboo Bedroom Furniture.
in diameter) are bent, and then fixed as shown to the
uprights, and further secured with a rail near the
bottom, the cot being swung on the stand by means
of a bolt at each end. At the head is a curtain rod
of |-in. bamboo, which is fastened inside, not out-
side, the top end. Take care to make good joints,
and the result will be very satisfactory. The pattern
of the sides and ends may be varied to suit individual
taste. When the cot is not wanted to swing, fix it
to the stand by means of brass hooks and eyes.
-Child's Bamboo Cot.
A child's bam})oo cot of a different design is illus-
trated in part by Fig. 79, p. 73. For making this cot,
select four canes not less than 1^ in. in diameter
for the corner posts ; cut these to the length required
and fix a stout plug in each end. For the frame of the
bed, use 1-in. canes. Bore holes in the four corner
posts after the fashion of a mortise-and-tenon-
joint, those for the ends to be higher than those at
the sides, and the canes can be fixed in these and
held with a fine, long screw. Webbing can be used
for the bottom, and if this is used the simplest way
72 Bamboo Work.
is to make a good loop at each end and slip them
over the canes before fixing i nthe posts. A better
way, however, is to use a piece of stout canvas the
size of the crib and lace it to the sides. Bamboo
being rather slight, will have to be put together
very accurately, and at least two stretchers should
be used to keep the frame rigid. The top rail can
be fixed in the same manner as the bottom, and
from these a lattice work of smaller canes can
easily be constructed. A good plan is to have a
kind of vmder-rail to keep the legs firm ; Fig. 79
will help to make everything clear. The dimen-
sions are best fixed as circumstances require. The
four posts can be finished off with knobs, and cas-
ters may be fixed on the bottom end : or an equally
good plan is to have the bottom plugs turned a little
larger, and projecting beyond the end about 2 in.
As bamboo has many crevices it is well to fill up any
small spaces in the joints with a mixture of plaster-
of-Paris, brown sienna, and glue mixed up into
paste form ] when dry this will prevent insects hid-
ing in out-of-the-way cavities ; or any of the fillings
mentioned on p. 38 can be employed.
From the illustration Fig. 80, p. 75, the dressing
table about to be described may appear to be an am-
bitious piece of furniture. But attention to the in-
structions given below should result in a very credit-
able job. Fig. 80 shows the dressing-table complete.
Of course, the measurements may be altered at
pleasure, but those given will be found suitable for
ordinary use. First get two l^-in. bamboos about
6 ft. long ; these are to be bent slightly at the
bottom. Cut off two pieces 32 m. long for the two
front uprights, a a. Get two more bamboos of the
same diameter and cut off two pieces 45 in. long for
the back uprights, b b
Proceed to make the back and front frames. First
mortise six rails 33^ in. long out of l^-in. bamboo ;
these must be roughed inside at the ends with a
Bamboo Bedroom Furniture.
round rasp in order to make the glue adhere. Plug
both ends with dowels about 6 in. long, leaving about
1 in. projecting ; do not as yet glue in the plugs.
With a |-in. centre bit bore three holes in each up-
right at 1 in., 65 in., and 29 in. respectively, measur-
ing from the top of the front uprights. The point
of the bit enters 1 in. from the top of each upright.
for IJamboo Cot.
Take the six rails, pull out the plugs and shave these
to fit in the holes bored. Fit the frame together to
see that all joints are neat, and then take to pieces
again for gluing up. Have the glue hot and rather
thick, and get the frame together as quicklj^ as
possible. Tighten up with strings passed round and
twisted tight with pegs (see Fig. 10, p. 24, and Fig. 163
p. 145). Put aside for the glue to set. Mortise two
7 4 Ba mboo Wor k.
pieces of 1^-in. bamboo 33| in. long for the two up-
rights, c c. These are to be phigged at both ends
and then dowelled on to the top rail of the back
frame, leaving 18^ in. between. Make three rails to
fi^. in, leaving a space of 3 in. between the top rail d
and the second rail e, and 24^ in. between e and f ;
plug these rails, and insert long panel pins, boring
first Avith a fine bradawl to avoid splitting the bam-
boo. Bend a piece of 1-in. cane, G, to the required
shape ; fit this, and dowel on to the tMO uprights c, c,
leaving it to hang over for about 2 in. on each side
(see G, Fig. 80). Five pieces of ^-in. bamboo each
5 in. long, have to be fitted in between the top rail
and the bent top bamboo, and must be rasped to fit.
Four |-in. bamboo canes, mortised to 6-4 in., are for
the two sides H H (Fig. 80), and are placed at a
distance of 3 in. apart, measuring 1 in. from the top
of upright. The small slanting pieces are of ^-in.
bamboo 4 in. long, and are mortised to fit, glued and
nailed on wdth fine 1-in. pins. Bend two |-in. bam-
boos with roots to the required shape for J J, and
spindle them on to the two uprights c c with pieces
of ^-in. bamboo 4 in. long. Mortise six l^-in. bam-
boo canes, 16 in. long, for the side rails M ; plug in
the same way as were the front and back rails, and
with a ^-in. centre-bit bore holes in two frames ;
fit, and then glue up the same Avay as before. Square
up the whole stand and let it remain for a day or so
for the glue to set quite hard.
The frame for the mirror may be made whilst the
stand is lying aside. It is of 1-in. bamboo or of
ordinary wood, as may be preferred. The inside
measurement is 22 in. by 16 in., and the corners have
to be strongly and carefully mitred. Nail round
some fine beading cane to form a rebate for the glass
to rest on ; put in the silvered glass and back with
thin board. Put this aside, and commence to fit
the top and side panels. The top panels are
of spruce or pine covered with matting or Japanese
Bamboo Bedroom Furniture.
Fig. 80. — liamboo Dressing Table.
76 Bamboo Work.
paper. The matting is glued on as is described
on p. 51. Nail beading cane round the edges. The
side panels are of lacquer work, and the back can be
a piece of spruce stained brown.
Now take four pieces of |-in. bamboo 4| in. long ;
these have to be spindled into the table-top 6^ in.
apart and 4 in. from the back. Fit a rail in between
each, \ in. from the top, and a rail on either side ;
plug and nail with fine pins. Get some |-in. bam-
boos and bend to the required shape for the six
curved pieces n (Fig. 80), which are spindled on to
the frame with thin pieces of cane 5 in. long.
Fit the lacquer panels on top and at sides, and
secure w4th pins. Fit the panels between the rails,
then bore right through the rails with a fine brad-
awl and secure with 2-in. panel pins. Make two
small drawers to fit ; the front of each drawer should
be a piece of lacquer. Make also the tw^o large
drawers, which have lacquer fronts ; it will be an
improvement if the panels are beaded round with
cane. Now fit panels in under the table, and cover
with matting or Japanese paper, in the same way
as was the table-top. The mirror frame swings on
a pair of brass tighteners which are fitted on the two
uprights. Four brass handles for the drawers are
put on with small brass screws.
The dressing-table is now complete, and requires
only a coat or two of hard white varnish to finish
it ; this should be applied in a rather warm room.
It would perhaps be an improvement to use lacquer
instead of matting or paper for the table-top, but
this would add to the expense, and matting looks
very well, and is very durable when used with or-
A bamboo washstand to match the bamboo dress-
ing-table just described is illustrated by Fig. 81,
This design should not present difficulties to anyone
sufficiently skilful to make the table above men-
tioned. The uprights a a and b b should be got out
Bamboo Bedroom Furniture.
first ; the former are 32 in. long, and the latter 40| in.
The front ones ai'e bent slightly at the bottom, and
this should be done before they are cut to size. Plug
the ends and with a |-in. centre-bit bore holes in a
line at 1 in., 65 in., and 29 in., measuring from the
top of front uprights a a. k\\ additional hole is
bored in the back ones b b 2|- in. from the top. Now
put these aside and get seven pieces of Ij-in. dia-
meter bamboo 371 in. long and mortise to 36 in. ;
tliese are for the long rails. Rough them inside at
the ends with a round rasp, and plug with dowels
at least (3 in. long, leaving 1 in. projecting ; shave
7 8 Bamboo Work.
the end of pegs to fit tightly in the holes bored in the
uprights. Then fit the two frames together, taking
care that all joints fit neatly.
Now take to pieces for gluing up ; this process
resembles the putting together of the dressing-table
as explained on pp. 73-76. When this is done put the
framework aside and get six pieces of bamboo 1^ in.
diameter ; these must be mortised to 16 in. In
cutting up bamboo for rails, 1^ in. is allowed for the
waste entailed by mortising. The six rails are for
the sides ; rasp and plug, then take the two frames
and bore holes with a ^-in, bit to receive the plugs ;
fit in the same way as before, and then glue and
square the whole frame. The distance apart be-
tween the two top rails at the back is 6 in., and in
this space half a dozen 6 in. square tiles are fitted.
Thin beading cane is nailed round first to form a
rebate, the tiles are then put in, and cane is nailed
round at the back to keep the tiles in position. The
bottom panel, which now is fitted in, is made of deal
f in. thick planed on both sides. Secure this with
2-in. panel pins, which are driven through the rails,
boring first with a fine bradawl. Nov/ make four
rails 27| in. long to form a frame for the cupboard,
as shown at c c. These are plugged and secured
with long pins ; fit panels in sides and at the back
in the same way as in the case of the bottom panel.
The two sides of the latter and the cupboard should
be covered with matting or Japanese paper.
Make a rail to fit in between the two rails at the
top of front, then make the drawers and fit them ;
the fronts of the drawers should be pieces of Jap-
anese lacquer. The door for the cupboard is made
of a piece of deal, the front being covered with
matting, and split bamboo mitred at the corners is
nailed round the edge. A small brass cupboard tarn
and two brass hinges are fitted on the door.
The table top is of deal, and 1 in. is allowed to
hang over on each side except at the back ; the top
Bambov Bedroom Furniture.
is attached with 2-in. screws which enter from the
back of uprights b b, and two are driven from the
top of table into the plugs in the uprights A A (Fig. 81).
Cover with matting ; or, if a more elaborate job is
required, a marble top is very suitable ; this is
easily fixed with screws. If matting is used, bamboo
1 in. in diameter is nailed round the edge, the cor-
ners being mitred. Bend some ^-in.cane for the fancy
work, D D, and spindle on with pieces of thin cane
2.— Bamboo Was^hst;
3 in. long. The bent piece for the top is made out of
1-in. diameter cane, and the small slanting pieces are
made out of ^-in. cane. The centre one should be
5 in. long ; the others must be cut to fit, as their
lengths greatly depend on the way the top bamboo
has been bent. Cut two pieces of 1-in. bamboo 16 in.
long for the two towel rails, and spindle them on to
the frame with 4-in. pieces of ^-in. bamboo.
All the woodwork of the washstand including the
inside of cupboard, in which a shelf can be fixed if
3o Bamboo Work.
desired, should be stained walnut colour. Finish
the washstand by varnishing it in a warm room.
Another design for a bamboo washstand is given in
Fig. 82, p. 79. The table portion is well supportsd by
the four legs and by five additional uprights dowelled
into the diagonal cross-rails.
The swing glass with a bamboo frame, illus-
trated by Fig. 83, will accommodate a mirror
measuring 21 in. by 15 in. It is made as
follows : — First make of 1-in. bamboo a frame with
mitred joints to fit the glass, the bamboos being
first plugged and ^hen glued and pinned together.
Rasp the knots down level on the inside, and fix
an edging of split beading cane round the frame to
form a rebate for the glass. Back it with thin wood
or millboard and secure it also with beading cane.
The glass, with frame, will measure 23 in. by 17 in.
so should be swung 12 in. from the bottom. Allow
3^ in. clear space between bottom of . frame and
drawer top, 2^ in. for depth of drawers, and \\ in.
below ; this will make the side supports 19^ in. high
to centre of top rail (see Fig. 84), and 22 in. in all ;
cut the uprights to 23 in. to allow for the small
bend at the top and the angle at which they are
fixed, they being 3 in. apart at a and 9 in. at c (Fig.
84). The uprights, as well as the cross-pieces b and
c ,are of |-in. bamboo ; but the top cross-piece A is of
1-in. bamboo. The cross-pieces must be dowelled mto
the uprights. If the top-piece a has not a knot
the plug will go right through, and thus will give
additional strength. The space between B and c is
filled in with a piece of Japanese lacquer, secured
with wu-e pins through the bamboo, and edged with
split beading cane. The bend at the top of the
uprights is made in the usual manner. The cross-
pieces between A and b are of ^ in. bamboo plugged
and rasped out to fit, then glued and pinned to the
uprights. To determine the distance between the
two uprights, leave a clear space of \ in. each side
B A 31 BOO Bedroom Furniture. 8i
of the looking-glass, and cut the bamboos that form
the two uprights and make the case for the drawers
accordingly ; a piece divides the drawers in front.
Having fixed the uprights fit in the top and bottom
of drawer case ; the bottom need only be of common
deal, but the top should be of lacquer, in character
with the sides and back. The drawer fi'onts also are
of lacquer, with fancy brass handles.
The glass is swung on bamboo pivots, which are
Fig. 83. — Toilet Mirror with Bamboo Frame,
of Mirror Frame.
Fig. 84.- Side
made thus : cut out two pieces of |-in. bamboo about
3 in. long from between the knots and plug them right
through. Then cut a f-in. hole with a centre-bit
through the cross-pieces A, and also in the looking-
glass frame 12 in. from the bottom end, but not right
through. The pivots should fit firmly in the cross-
pieces and be secured with a wire pin, and also be
fairly tight in the mirror frame, so that the glass
will remain stationary at any angle at which it is
put. Small brass knobs screwed in the ends of the
pivots are a nice finish.
BAMBOO HALL RACKS AND STANDS.
A VERY simple rack or rail for hats can be made
from 1-in. bamboo canes, as shown in Fig. 85. Cut
off two lengths, each 44 in., for the top and bottom
of the rack ; then cut five lengths, each 9 in., for the
uprights. Shape the ends of these uprights as in
Fig. 86, A, with the rasp, so that they will fit on to
the rods along the top and bottom of the rack ; in
Fig. 86, A is the upright and b the top rod. Fit a
wooden dowel 2 in. or 3 in. long into a ; each length
when rasped should be 7 in. Mark off spaces in the
Fig. 85.— Hat Rack.
long rods, taking care to allow 1 in. for the thickness
of each upright, and next bore holes into the
rods B B (Fig. 85), where marked for the uprights.
It is better to bore the holes slightly smaller than the
dowel, which can then be reduced to fit, because if
the holes are too large the joints will be loose and
thus reduce the strength of the rack. The dowels
must then be fixed in the drilled holes in b with hot
glue, and gently hammered home. Before gluing, fit
the dowels into the drilled holes to ensure good
The construction of the ornamental part of the hat
rail is shown by Fig. 37. a shows the dowel fitted,
but not driven home. The ornamental part should
Bamboo Hall Racks.
be made in ^-in. bamboo, and fixed into A and b b
(Fig. 85) by holes bored with a small centre-bit, and
fitted in before the whole is clamped together.
It should be observed, in cutting off the lengths for
the top and bottom rails, that the knots in the bam-
boos come between the uprights. Glue and clamp
up ; fasten the whole together with fine French nails
or screws, taking care always to bore holes for them
or the cane will split. The ends can be finished with
turned hardwood or bone terminals, and the pegs
may be brass or rooted bamboo, according to fancy.
Fig. 86.— Up-
right for Hat
Fig. 87.- Filling for
An umbrella stand may be made in bamboo to a
very simple design as illustrated by Fig. 88, p. 84.
Four sticks, 1 in. thick, will be required, and the
size of the stand is as follows : The four uprights,
2 ft. 6in. long ; six rails or traverses for front
and back, 15 in. long ; six side pieces, 8 in. long ; two
pieces at the bottom to rest the pan on, 8 in. long ;
a centre piece at the top, 8 in. long ; and, finally,
four little stays, 4 in. long. Plug both ends of the
uprights, and, 1^ in. from each end, cut a hole with a
|-in. centre-bit, and a third one 4^ in. from the bot-
tom end. Rasp out the ends of the six cross-pieces,
to fit against the uprights and then plug each end,
leaving the plug protruding | in. This should fit
tight in the holes of the uprights, and be secured
there with hot glue and a bamboo pin (see Fig. 89).
- Fig. 89
-Umbrella Stand. Fig. 89. — Joints for Umbrella
Fix the parts together, and bind them with string
until the glue is quite dry. Plug each end of the six
side pieces, and rasp the ends to shape, as before.
90.— Umbrella Stand.
Terminal of Umbrella
They are glued to the uprights and further secured
from the other side with a 2-in, bamboo pin ;
previous to gluing, the bamboo must be roughened.
Before fixing the side pieces the two bottom pieces
Bamboo Hall Stands.
and the centre piece must be dowelled, as before,
after which the whole framework can be put to-
gether and left to dry. Lastly, the four angle stays
Fig. 92.— TTat and TTmhrella Stand.
must be fixed on with glue and pins. A wooden
button or terminal fixed on each upright will com-
plete the construction of the stand, though, of
course, a pan to receive the rain water drippings
Fi^r. 93. — Centre
Uprio-hf, of Um-
from the umbrellas will be re-
quired. Clean off all super-
fluous glue, and give the stand a
coat of varnish.
The umbrella stand (Fig. 90)
p. 84, is similar to the last, except
that the bottom is of wood with
a wood edging round to form
a well, in which should be let
a brass or copper tray. The
uprights are let into holes
bored in the base. Fig. 91, p. 84,
is an enlarged view of one of the
A more ambitious piece of
furniture is shown by Fig. 92,
p. 85. The hat and umbrella stand
there illustrated may have the
following principal dimensions :
Extreme height, 7 ft. 6 in. ;
width, 3 ft. 6 in. Height of
bottom portion, 28 in. ; width
between uprights, 12 in. Height
of centre uprights, 6 ft. 6 in. ;
side uprights, 6 ft. 3 in. ; depth
of stand, 13 in. Size of mirror,
12 in. by 18 in.
Two l^-in. canes, each 6 ft.
in. long, will form the centre
uprights. Cut seven canes
14 in. long (which, when rasped,
should be 12 in.) and mark off
the canes as in Fig. 93 ; allow
2 in. for each joint. Hollow
the ends to fit on to the up-
rights, and cut dowels to fit
into the ends of the canes ;
the dowels should project about
\\ in. With brace and bit cut
Bamboo Hall Stands.
holes in the marked places in
the uprights to receive the ends
of the dowels ; fit together
loose, to see if all the joints are
good. If all right, fix together
with hot glue ; also bore holes
through the uprights, and fasten
with wire nails or screws. If
screws are used, countersink
the heads. The whole should
be clamped together until the
glue has set thoroughly ; for a
clamp, use a string twisted as de-
scribed on pp. 23 and 24. Cut two
canes, each 6 ft. 3 in. long, and
mark off as shown in Fig. 94.
Cut ten canes, each 14 in.
long, and fit to centre as de-
scribed above ; fit each part to-
gether separately, taking care
not to get askew. The cross-
bars at the bottom should now
be fitted, the ends being
plugged with dowels, and
nailed in their places with thin
wire nails. Now fit together
the panel to receive the tile or
plaque, rasping the bamboo to
fit ; put in on the slant, and
work to the proper position,
taking care to keep the place
for the tile or plaque square.
Fig. 30, p. 36, shows the
dowelling of the diagonal pieces of
the fancy filling. A dowel
is put right through one of the
rods and the two pieces fitted
on ; the other pieces are then rasped and fitted into
their places with glue and small nails, care being
Fi^-. 94. — Side
Upright of Vm.-
taken to keep them parallel with the centre cross.
The tiles and glass are fastened in securely by nail-
ing on pieces of split cane. The knots in the bamboo
9o.— Hat and TTml)rella Stand.
should first be rasped level, so that the tiles will fib
well. Two pieces of wood should be let into the
bamboo at the back of the glass by cutting mortise
Bamboo Hall Stands.
holes (as shown in Fig. 3, p. 20). Proceed to make
the front part by cutting two canes, each 30 in.
Fia;. 96. — liack Section of I'^mbrolla Stand.
long, and two 36 in. long ; six 14 in. long, to rasp to
12 in., and eight each 11 in. long, to rasp to 9 in.
Make the centre part by dowelling the centre
bottom stretchers ; glue up and clamp, and fit on the
two sides. To make the fastening between centre
and side stretchers very firm, put a screw through
the back, so that it will go well into the dowel. Make
and fit the drawer and supports, and fix together the
front and back, using screws to make the whole firm.
The sides, top, and front of the drawer and of shelf
can be wood, plain or covered with Japanese mat-
ting, or may be lacquered plaques. Two japanned
Fi"'. 97. — Front Section of Umhrella Stand.
trays will be required for the umbrellas. Either
root bamboo or brass hat pegs can be used.
For the uprights in the bamboo hat and umbrella
stand shown complete by Fig. 95, p.
1^-in. canes should be used, and slightly smaller ones
for the cross rails. Cut them to the lengths marked on
Fig. 96, p. 89, allowing an extra 2 in. for the cross
rails for hollowing and fitting. The mirror is 20 in.
by 12 in., but it can be made longer by altering the
position of the rails b and c (Fig. 96, p. 89). Fig. 97
shows the front. The four connecting rails measure
10^ in. when hollowed. The spaces marked d (Fig.
96) are filled in with wood covered with Japanese
Bamboo Hall Stands. 91
leather paper. The brush tray is made of a piece
of |-in. deal covered with leather paper, and slipped
with split cane. The tin pan at the bottom of the
umbrella stand should have a lip at each end to keep
it in place.
The hat-and-umbrella stand shown by Fig. 98 is
Hat and Umhrella Stand.
6 ft. high and 3 ft. wide. The bottom portion which
holds the umbrellas is 2 ft, 9 in. high, and is fitted
with a loose zinc pan, supported on traverses. The
framework should be of l^-in. bamboo, the inner
parts of 1-in., and the short spindles of |-in., let
directly into the framework.
18 in. by 12 in.
The mirror measures
BAMBOO MUSIC RACKS.
The racks illustrated and described in this chapter
are for the reception of sheet music, newspapers,
A typical design is shown by Fig. 99, and for it
four 1-in. and two fin. canes will be required. From
the 1-in. canes four lengths should be bent or toed
out and cut off 20 in. long. Four pieces, each 16 in.
long, for the four rails should now be cut off, also
from the 1-in. canes, chisel-pointed, mortised (or
hollowed) with the rasp, and fitted to their places.
Holes should then be ]:)ored in the legs to receive the
dowels, and the two sides framed up as described
in previous chapters. While these sides, or sections,
are setting, the two ornamental fillings should be
made from fin. cane. Four pieces of 1-in. bamboo,
each 9 in. long (1^ in. is allowed for fitting), should
be prepared to form the cross rails which are to
join the two sections together. When the
sections are set, holes should be bored to
receive the dowels of the cross rails, and
the whole then joined together. The two uprights
for the partition are fitted to the bottom cross rail,
and the top cross rail and upright are half jointed
where they cross. The rail which carries the handle
is mortised and dowelled at each end and fastened
into position with two round-headed screws. The
handle is made from I in. cane, bent as shown, and
fastened to the centre rail with round-headed
screws. The rails which form the division of the
partition, as also the three cross rails forming the
bottom, are made from |-ih. cane mortised at the
ends and fixed into position with beading pins. A
diagonal stay, not sho^^^l in the illustration, may
be added to the central framework.
Bamboo Music Racks,
A design much on the lines of the last one is
given by Fig. 100. The detailed letter references
should make the construction of the other rack more
intelligible. The rack illustrated by Fig. 100 may
be made from f-in. canes. The four corner posts each
19 in. long, are slightly bent out at the bottom to
form the feet. The posts are connected by three
rails A, B, c, back and front, each 15| in. long, and
at the sides by rails d and e (Fig. 100) each 9 in. long.
There are also three cross rails running from front
Fig. 99.— Two-Division Music Rack.
to back connecting the rail A. The rail E and the
upright F (the latter being 13^ in. long) are halved
where they cross. Between the centre uprights f is
a rail G 15| in. long, to which the handle h, of fin.
cane, is fastened. Running from the rail G are two
^-in. canes k, each about 19^ in. long,pinned together
where they cross, and fixed underneath the rail D.
An inclined rail J runs from b to c, the lower end
being \\ in. away from the corner post and the upper
end, 5^ in. away. Another cane L (Fig. 100), 9 in.
long, inclined in the opposite direction, meets the
rail J about 3^ in. from the top, and in the triangular
opening thus formed panels are fixed. The dotted
lines indicate how the cane L might be fixed if a
variation in the design is desired. In this case the
rail B would terminate where it met L. The centre
of rail A is 6^ in., and the centre of b 9^ in., from the
Two-Division Music Rack.
ground, and the distance between centres of d and E
is 3^ in.
A bamboo rack with three divisions is shown by
Fig. 101 ; it can be made of |-in. or thinner bamboo.
A useful size would be 15 in. high by 15 in. long, the
divisions being 3 in. apart, and the four uprights or
legs slightly bent outwards both at the top and
bottom. Fig. 102 is an end view of the rack ; the
two divisions are dowelled into the lower traverse,
Bamboo Music Racks.
whilst the upper division forms part of the bottom
for the rack, being in a line with the bottom traverse
of the sides. Fig. 103 shows one of the two parti-
tions, and on the top traverse is a piece either of
black or white beading cane to form a handle. There
Thri e-division Music Rack,
Fiff. 102.- End View
are also two cross traverses dowelled into the
bottom traverses of the sides to form the bottom
of the rack. The sides are filled in as shown by
Fig. 101, the centre panel consisting of a piece of
lacquer fixed into the bamboo framework with split
The construction of the rack illustrated by Fig.
104, p. 96, will require the followini^ canes : Four for
the legs, each a little over 20 in. long (to allow for
bending) ; four 18-in. canes to form the borders of
the sides ; a piece to form the handle ; and the
Ccanes to complete the rack, the lengths of which
can easily be obtained from the illustrations.
Another design for a music rack is given in
Fig. 105, and, compared with Fig. 104, the principal
differences are that it has three compartments, has
Fig. 104. — Two-Di^dsion Music Rack.
handles at the ends, and is provided with casters.
The ends of the rods to w^hich the casters are fixed
must be plugged wath a piece of wood about 1^ in.
long. The tops of the four comer uprights are 22 in.
from the ground ; the rack is 20 in. long, and 14 in.
B.-tMBoo Music Racks.
For the panels some Japanese paper will be
wanted. First cut two pieces of wood of the required
size and about \ in. thick, after which cover one side
of each wdth the Japanese paper— thin glue being
used for fixing. When this is dry, secure the panels
-Three-division Music Eacl
to the sides of the rack by means of strips of split
beading cane. Pieces of millboard are fastened to
the backs of the panels.
Fig. 106, p. 98, illustrates a combined table and
music canterbury, made in brown bamboo canes
about 1 in. thick. It may be about 28 in. high and
12 in. deep, and is made in flat sections, A, b, c, d.
Fig. 107 shows the construction of sections b and c.
Make up the top, put in the panel, hollow out the
tops of A and d (Fig. 108), and fix dowels, so that the
top of the table will fix on to the dowel. Let the
dowel project \ in., so that the end will fit on to the
under side of the top, in the corners of which four
holes should be bored to receive the dowels. Hollow
out five lengths for rails, to make up 10^ in.
long. When all the sections are thoroughly dry —
Fig. 106.— Combined Table and Music Rack. Fij
Section of Music Eack.
say in twenty-four hours — take two rails, and
bore holes 3 in. from each end to receive dowels ;
take sections b and c (Fig. 106), the bottoms of which
should be rasped to fit on to the stretchers, and
dowelled. Fix the three centre rails to d, and
when B and c are set, fasten the whole together.
It is advisable to dowel the rails e and f into
A and D, as they bear the greatest part of the weight
of the music. Fix the top, clamp up, and screw
BAMBOO CABINETS AND BOOKCASES.
The bamboo cabinet illustrated by Fig. 108 on the
next page is about 6 ft. 8 in. high, and for its con-
struction 18 canes 1^ in. in dia,meter, and 6 lengths
^ in. to I in. in diameter will be required, the lengths
being as imported — about 6^ ft.
The back frame (Fig. 109, p. 101) is made first. The
uprights A A are 6 ft. high, and must be perfectly
straight. The horizontal rails b are mortised at
each end, and are made from l^-in. canes. Bore
holes in the uprights with a f-in. centre-bit, 2 in.,
38 in. , and 67 in. respectively, from the top of the up-
right. Then plug the rails with dowels not less than
8 in. long, shave the ends to fit in the holes in the
uprights, and fit the frame together. The front
frame (Fig. 110, p. 102) is made in the same manner,
the uprights being canes 36 in. long, slightly bent at
the bottom. Plug them at the top and bore holes
at 1 in. and 31 in. from the top to receive the two
long rails. Then fit in the rails c, Fig. 109, as fol-
lows : — First cut four canes of the l^-in. bamboo
about 34 in. long, and mortise one end. Let this
rest on one of the rails between which it will fit and
then mark where it touches the other ; mortise to
the mark, plug, and secure with 3-in. pins. Fit the
small horizontal rails in the same manner.
The small slanting pieces shown in Fig. 108, p. ICO,
known as "herringbone," are cut from ^-in. bam-
boo, and are about 4 in. long. They are secured
with glue and fine nails. The frame for the Japanese
lacquer panel d (Fig. 109) should next be put in.
This is made of |-in. bamboo, the panel being 8 in.
wide by 6 in. high.
Fit the rails, shown in Fig. 110, p. 102, to the front
frame. For the side rails, six pieces of l^-in. bamboo,
mortised to 18 in. long, are required. Four of these
Bamboo Cabinets. iot
go at right angles with the two bottom rails in the
back and front frames, the other two being dowelled
on 12 in. from the bottom rail. The curved pieces seen
in Fig. lOS are of \-m.. stuff. The centre piece in
the top rail is 10 in. high, and the curved pieces are
spindled to this with pieces of cane 4 in. long.
Fig. 109.— Back Section of ]5amboo Calnnet.
For the woodwork of the lower part of the
cabinet, \-'m. pine is used. Commence by fitting the
panels at the back with 2^-in. panel pins, which enter
through the bamboo rails. Plane up on the outside,
and cover the inner side with Japanese paper. The
other parts are done in the same way. The side-
board top is of deal, and projects 3 in. at the sides
and the front, split bamboo being fixed on the edges
as shown. This is screwed to the uprights in the
back frame, and to the phigs in the top of the front
uprights. The sideboard lop can be covered with
Japanese paper, or, if preferred, it could be stained
The cupboard doors are made of Japanese lac-
quer with split bamboo nailed round the edges, and
are fixed wath brass hinges. A small lock or a brass
cupboard turn fastens the door. The drawer is of
deal, a piece of Japanese lacquer forming the front
panel, a brass handle being screwed on as shown.
The glass in the top part of the cabinet is of 24-in.
Fig. 110.— Front Section of Bamboo Cabinet.
by 12-in. bevelled edge plate, and is fixed in a rebate
formed by a split cane nailed to the bamboo. A
wood panel is fixed at the back. The large panels
afc the sides of the glass are of Japanese lacquer, as
are also the two shelves, the latter being fixed with
screws driven from the back of the rails, against
which they rest. The cabinet, with the exception
of the panels, which are polished when imported,
should have a coat or two of white shellac varnish
(see p. 39).
Fig. Ill shows a cabinet bearing some general
resemblance to the previous one. The uprights of
top are 2 ft. 6 in. long, the cross rails 3 ft. 3 in., and
the mirror 20 in. by 15 in. Use l^-in. or l^-in. canes
for the work. Make up the front and back of the
cabinet in the first place, and, while these are set-
ting, get out the back of the top. Join together the
two 'bottom sections. The distance between front
Fig. 111.— Bamboo Cabinet.
and back rails is about 10 in. if the cabinet is to be
13 in. deep over all. Make the door frames from
perfectly straight 1-in. canes. These canes should
be mitred at the corner, and a right-angle dowel
should be used for filling. The rebate for the glass
should be formed with split black cane. The doors
are hinged on pins, which act as pivots. The con-
struction of the upper portion of the work is very
similar to that described for the making of an over-
mantel illustrated by Figs. 152 and 154, pp. 135 and
The bamboo music cabinet illustrated by Fig. 112
is first framed up in two sections, A and b (Fig. 113).
The tv.'O front legs should not be cut off to length
until they have been bent, and 2 in. should be al-
Fig. 112. — Bamboo Music Cabinet.
lowed on the rails for chisel-pointing and fitting.
Care must be taken to get the sections perfectly
square. They should be thoroughly tested with the
measuring lath. While the sections are setting, the
four side rails c (Fig. 113) should be fitted, and the
whole frame afterwards put together. The back,
sides, and bottom of the cabinet are made of |-in.
deal, covered w4th Japanese leather paper or mat-
ting. The sides are fixed in position with nails,
driven through the four legs, but before this is done
any knots in the bamboo should be rasped down,
so that the wood may fit close in the frame. The
shelves can next be fitted, after which the sides are
beaded with split cane, white or black. The mottled
or tortoised appearance on some of the beading is
produced by passing the cane through a flame and
burning it at intervals (see p. 38).
The door frame, in Figs. 112 and 114, is shown
made from whole cane, which should be slightly
smaller than that used for the legs. Great care
must be taken to use canes both straight and of
Fig. 113. — Framing of Bamboo Music Cabinet. Fig-. 114.
— Door Frame of Bamboo Music Cabinet.
imiform thickness. First rasp down all protruding-
knots, and then cut off the four pieces in a mitre box ;
fit them in the places they will occupy inside the
frame a. Fig. 113. After being marked, they are taken
out and a rather long dowel is fitted into the end of
each, one end of the dowel being allowed to project.
When all the ends are fitted, the frame should be
laid down flat, with each piece in its proper position,
and the two dowels on a (Fig. 114) taken out, mitred,
and nailed together. Each angle should be treated
in a similar manner, and the whole frame then tem-
io6 Bamboo Work.
porarily fitted together and tried in its place. If
it fits correctly it can be glued up and left to set. A
fine nail is put through each mitre to strengthen
the joint further. All knots on the door frame should
be rasped down flat, and a rebate formed with split
beading cane to receive the glass. The door, hinged
on pins, is fastened by a cupboard turn, which should
be made of sheet brass so that it can be bent to the
shape of the bamboo. The four rails should now
be cut off close to the top cross rails, and the whole
top surface levelled up to receive the top. This is
made from a good lacquer panel, 20 in. by 14 in.,
beaded with whole bamboo. For whole beadmg a
very straight cane should be chosen, and one side
planed flat. The beading should be mitred and fixed
in place with 2-in. panel pins driven through the
bamboo into the lacquer. As has been said again
and again, do not drive a nail through bamboo with-
out first bormg a hole for it, otherwise the cane will
split. The mitred corners should be just touched
with glue, and the squareness of the corners taken
off with a rasp. An inside beading of black cane
greatly improves the appearance of the top. A
covering of ^-in. wood, the size of the lacquer panel,
should be screwed to the top of the cabinet frame,
and the lacquer top screwed to it from underneath,
care being taken that the screws do not go through
A combined china cupboard and bookcase in bam-
boo is illustrated by Fig. 115 ; it is made in tw^o sec-
tions, the bottom one, which serves as the cupboard,
being made first. From l|-in. or l^-in. canes cut
off four pieces each 38 in. long for the legs, and four
pieces each 36 in., which will be 33| in. after being
rasped and fitted. Xow fit and make up the two sec-
tions marked a and b (Fig. 116, p. 108), and set aside
to dry. While the sections are setting, the rails o to
form the frame should be got out and fitted, and when
the two sections are drv the whole should be fitted
together and the tops of the legs sawn off straight
and plugged. The wood to fill in the sides and back
of the frame should now be got out. The inside of
the cupboard may be either stained and varnished,
or covered with Japanese leather paper ; the outside
Fig-. 11. 5.— Combined China Cupboard and Bookcase.
may be covered with leather paper or mattdng,
according to taste. The shelves should be fitted
into their places (see pp. 110 to 112) and then the
frames of the two doors prepared. These are made
from deal 2 in. wide and | in. or \ in. thick. They
are illustrated as being covered with leather paper
and slipped with split cane. The inside slipping
of cane is made to project and so to form a rebate
for holding the glass in position. Unless some true-
sawn cane as prepared for dado work is at hand, it
is advisable to rim the plane along the split bamboo
in order that it may fit perfectly level on the wood.
The doors are hung on pins. A nail should be driven
into the bottom of the door frame, and allowed to
project about \ in., and a hole made in the bottom
of the frame to receive it. The toD pin is passed
Fig. 116. — Framing of China Cupboard.
through a hole bored in the top rail into the top of
the door frame. The doors are fastened with a small
bolt and cupboard turn. The top of the cupboard is
made from |-in. stuff, and should be 39 in. long and
14 in. wdde, so that it overlaps 1^ in. at each side
and 1 in. at the front. It should be screwed on to
the frame and afterwards covered with leather paper,
matting, or lacquer panels. If the latter are used,
they should be fastened to the wood with fine nails
round the edge, so that the nails will afterwards be
covered with the inside slip of cane when the edge
has been slipped with split bamboo.
The making of the upper section — the bookcase
proper — will now be described. From l^-in. or
1^-in. canes cut off four pieces each 3 ft. 6 in. long
to form the uprights, and five pieces each 35^ in.
long (2 in. being allowed for fitting) to form the rails
of the sections a and b (Fig. 117). These should be
put together as before described, care being taken
to get the whole Avork firm and square. The rails c
(Fig. 117) should be gob out 10 in. long (2 in. being
allowed for fitting), and when the sections are dry
the whole should be framed together. It must now
be decided whether the shelves are to be fixtures or
Fig-. 117. — Framing of Bookcase.
movable. Flaving decided upon the kind of slielves
to be employed, the sides and back of the bookcase
should be fixed in position, care being taken not to
make too close a fit or the joints will be sprung. The
filling at the top is next done. The herringbone
work in the centre is started from the left-hand side,
and is put in piece by piece, each piece being
fastened with glue and fine beading pins. The
shelves for the bookcase should have a slipping of
split cane the exact thickness of the shelf, and a
leather shelf-edging should be fastened on under-
neath to make a good finish.
Bamboo bookcases are much firmer if they have
a wooden back as in Fig. 115; there is difficulty
sometimes in supporting and securing tlie shelves of
bamboo bookcases, but the following plan answers
well : — Insert a screw-eye at the requisite height for
each shelf in each bamboo upright, diagonally.
Notch the shelves slightly at the comers to fit the
bamboo uprights ; lay them on the screw-eyes, and
Fig. 118.-3Iethod of Fixing Bookshelf.
through each eye, from the underside, insert a screw,
which will hold all rigid. The fixing of the shelves
all depends on the kind of bookcase ; if, as in Fig.
115, p. 107, the back is of wood, the following method
of fixmg them might be adopted : Screw or dowel
through one of the front bamboos at each end of
shelf, so as to fix it, and to keep the shelf from sink-
Fig. 119. — Bookshelf Grooved and Tongued.
ing in the middle widthways. Plough a groove
across each end, and insert a hardwood tongue as
sho\\Ti in Figs. 118 and 119. In Fig. 118, which is a
section, A is the bamboo ; b, shelf ; c, back ; and d,
dowel. Fig. 119 shows end of sh'elf, with tongue in-
serted ; B indicating the shelf and e the tongue.
Bookcase shelves may rest directly on the rails,
the upper surface of the latter having the nodes
rasped off, so that the shelf can fit level. In such a
Bamboo Bookcases. i 1 1
case the shelf should have a very slight projection
over the rail, and its edge should be moulded or
chamfered, and cut out at the angles to take the up-
right bars (see Fig. 120). After being fitted pro-
perly, small screws, driven up from the underside of
the rails, will secure the shelf. Another way is to
fix the shelves flush with the upper surface of the
rail. The inner face should be rasped off level, and
a small section taken out of the cane to receive the
Figs. 120 and 121. — Methods of Supporting Bookshelves.
Fig. 122. — Bamboo Side of Bookcase.
shelf as in Fig. 121. The shelf might be further
secured by driving in small screws through it into
For the wooden sides of bamboo bookcases, may
be substituted ornamental work formed of small
canes, something like Fig. 122 ; this is more in
keeping with the framework than are boarded sides.
The bamboo bookshelf shown by Fig. 123 is
suitable for standing on a writing-desk in a recess
p ft, Avide, Four strong mottled bamboos are cut
to 5-ft. lengths, and these, without any further work
upon them, form the horizontals shown by Fig. 123.
Four uprights, 19 in. long are required, and, in cut-
ting them, leave one of the natural joints of the wood
as a finish for the top. These uprights are framed
together with shorter pieces, as shown by Fig. 124,
the joints being formed by plugging the ends of the
short pieces and drilling holes in the uprights. The
plugs are glued into the cross-pieces, and a wire
nail is driven into the uprights aftenvards to make
all secure. The 5-ft. lengths are then laid on these
Fig. 123.— Bamboo Bookshelf.
frames and a nail put through each one to secure it
to the frames. As the w^hole thing is made to fit
comfortably into a recess, diagonal bracing is not
required, the walls preventing anything getting
out of place. Otherwise it will be necessary to
provide braces in the direction in which additional
strength is required. The shelves are planed up from
|-in. cypress or other wood, stained walnut, and var-
nished. The bottom shelf rests on the two bamboos.
The top shelf is made narrower and drops between
the two upper bamboos, as it is not intended to take
any heavy weight. Neatness is gained by conceal-
ing its front edge behind the horizontal bamboo.
Bamboo Bookcases. i 1 3
Fig. 125 shows an upright writings and in })am-
boo, about 3 ft. high, 2 ft. wide, and 9 in. deep, with
a top slightly overlapping. The writing fiap should
be 15 in. deep, and can either be hung with ordinary
hinges or pivots. The stand can be of rough wood,
as it is covered both inside and out either with
Japanese paper or matting— the former for prefer-
ence—and further relieved by panelling the sides
Fig. 121.— End Alew of Bamboo Bookshelf. Fig-. 12.).—
with split bamboo. By pivoting the flap is meant
that it swings on two stout wire pins fixed through
the front bamboo ; but it can also be hinged in the
ordinary way with brass hinges to the shelf. The
four uprights should be of whole bamboo, but the
front of shelves and other parts need only be of
split bamboo, which is really preferable, as it does
not stand out too prominently. The flap is sup
ported by brass chains, and should be covered inside
with leather or leatherette. A design for another
writing-table is given on p. 54.
BAMBOO WINDOW BLINDS.
Bamboo window blinds have several advantages over
cane or lattice blinds ; they do not discolour, they
are easily cleaned and dusted, and when old their
appearance can be brightened by a coat of clear spirit
varnish. No dimensions for the blinds described in
this chapter are given, as each must be made to suit
the window it is to occupy. In measuring for the
blind, the exact distances between the beads of the
window frame must be taken, and these will form
the outside measurements for the width of the blind.
For the blind shown by Fig. 126, two or three lengths
of 1-in. bamboo and about half a dozen lengths of
|-in. bamboo will be required. From the 1-in. bam-
boo cut off two lengths to form the uprights A (Fig.
127) and two lengths to form the cross rails b. A
suitable length for the uprights would be from 18 in.
to 21 in. long. For the hollowing of the ends the
cross rails should be cut 2 in. longer than required,
this amount being left for the thickness of the up-
rights A. The ends of the cross rails to be hollowed
should first be chisel-pointed with a saw and then
finished with a bamboo rasp. One end of each cross
rail must be fitted first, after it is pointed, and hol-
lowed with a |-in. round rasp to as nearly as possible
the size of the cane. Owing to the u-regularities of
bamboo, each joint must be fitted separately. The
rails and uprights should be marked to prevent any
mistake in gluing up. One end of each cross rail
should be fitted to its respective upright, and the
other end marked ; this will give the bottom of the
hollow. Then it can be fitted in the same manner as
the fiisL In putting together the other ends, take
Bamboo Windoif Blinds.
care that the hollows fall in the same plane as the
first, otherwise they will not fit together w^hen the
two uprights are parallel to one another.
Next join the four pieces into a section. The
cross rails are dow^elled to the uprights, the dowels
being fitted first to the cross rails and then to the
holes in the uprights. The two cross rails must be
attached to one of the uprights first, the second
upright being added afterwards in the same way,
the gluing being done as quickly as possible. When
the frame is together it must be clamped at each
end in the manner illustrated by Fig. 127 and de-
scribed on pp. 232 and 24. When the section is
square, it should be placed on one side until the glue
In the centre of Fig. 126 a Japanese lattice-wood
panel is shown. As these panels can be obtained
only in the following sizes, the inside section must
be made accordingly. The sizes are ; 9 in. by 9 in.,
12 in. by 9 in., 12 in. by 12 in., 12 in. by 15 in., and
12 in. by 18 in. While the section is setting, make
the inner frame for the lattice-wood panel. Cut four
pieces from the thick ends of the \-m. canes to form
Bamboo Window Blinds.
the frame (Fig. 128). The lengths should be chisel-
pointed and dowelled at one end. The space for the
panel should be measured, the holes for the dowels
bored, and the sections fitted and glued together.
The small oblong fillings outside the panel can now
be made, and the whole allowed to set. When the
large section is set, it should be placed in the posi-
tion it is to occupy in the outer frame, and marked.
Dowels should be fitted and then fixed by boring a
hole through the outer frame with a bradawl and
fastening with a panel pin. The four small sections
Fig. 128. — Fruming- for Inside tStclion of lilind.
then can be fitted and fixed with glue and j in. bead-
ing pins. To fit the lattice work, commence at the
top, each piece being fitted and held in position with
glue and beading pins as the work proceeds. The
top of the screen will require bending to shape.
The construction of the blind illustrated by Fig.
129, p. 118, is similar to that just described. The fan
can be made in two pieces, and the ribs should be
made from small bamboo. The pediment, or top
of this screen, can be glued into holes bored in the
top of the cross rail.
The window blind illustrated by Fig. 130, p. 119,
should not present difficulty in making. The filling at
the sides is commenced b}' forming the cross and then
adding each piece as in the lattice work. To fix the
leaded light, first rasp down any knots on the in-
side of the frame, and make a rebate of split rattan
cane, carefully mitred at the corners and fastened
on with beading pins, for a support. The glass
should then be placed in position and fastened on
the other side in the same manner. The whole of
the work should have a coat of spkit varnish when
Either of the bamboo window frames shown by
Bam/^oo Window Blixds.
Figs. 131 and 133, pp. 120 and 121, is an artistic addi-
tion to any room. That shown by Fig. 131 is for a
window that is flush w ith the wall, the top and sides
of the frame on this account standing out for a dist-
ance of about 9 in. One of these sides is shown by
Fig. 132. The two front tortoiseshell canes are each
about 6 ft. long, and may have root ends at the
bottom, although this is not essential. The two
back canes which rest against the wall are 1^ in. in
diameter and are of the same lengths as the front
two, and between these the sides are built up in
any desired design of i-in. tortoiseshell bamboo and
small cane, the latter being used for the twists and
bends. Two lengths of |-in. tortoiseshell bamboo,
bent at each end and fixed to the two front poles
about 6 in. apart, form the top, and a design is built
up between these in a similar manner to that adopted
T^T~^^f?^s:^^^!%j=u.-^^^^ ^ I'
Fig. 131.— BamLoo Frame for Window Flush with Wall.
Fig. 132. — Side Yiew of Bamboo Window Frame,
for the sides. The two fancy corner angles are of
^-in. tortoiseshell bamboo bent and fitted, and are
fixed to the top and sides. The curtain is suspended
by means of the usual hooks and eyes to a bamboo
pole which rests upon the two uppermost cross-bars
on each side of the frame.
Bamboo JV/ndojv Blinds.
The frame shown by Fig. 133 is for a recessed
window, and is simply a frame with sides and top
about 9 in. wdde fitting flat against the wall around
the opening of the window ; it is made similar to the
one described above, |-in. tortoiseshell bamboo.
Fig. 133. — Bamboo Frame for Recessed Window.
however, being used for the slanting pieces at the
top. The curtain in this case is supported by the
pole running across the frame at the top. When
everything is finished a good coat of varnish should
be given to the wliole, and the frame fixed to the
wall by means of staples or other suitable fastening.
MISCELLANEOUS ARTICLES OF BAMBOO.
In this chapter will be illustrated and described a
variety of bamboo articles, chiefly household furni-
ture, that are now coming into popular use.
The coal-box shown by Fig. 134 is of novel de-
sign, practical in its construction, and forms, when
closed, a comfortable settee. It consists of a wooden
box and hinged lid, covered with fancy matting or
Japanese embossed paper, and surmounted with an
edging of bamboo dado or split bamboo. The box
is mounted on four crossed legs of bent bamboo,
and Avithin the box is the usual loose iron lining.
The lid is hinged with brass strap hinges, and on the
side is a brass strap to hold the hand-scoop. The
box can be made of any rough wood, and measures
inside 18 in. long, 13 in. wide, and 9 in. high ; the
bottom, lid, and sides need be of '^-in. wood only,
and the end pieces | in. thick. The width necessi-
tates a glued joint in the lid. Get a yard of matting
— which is a sufficient quantity to cover the box on
the outside and the lid on the two sides — and cut
it to size. Have plenty of good, hot thin glue and
apply it liberally to both the wood and the matting,
particularly if the wood has a rough surface, when
naturally it will absorb more ; apply pressure until
the glue has set, otherwise the matting will only
stick in places and look lumpy. The same applies
equallj^ to Japanese paper ; and, as regards the
matting, it is better to cut it rather fuller than the
size actually required, and when glued trim off any
surplus with a sharjo knife (see also p. 51).
The cross-legs are practically the only trouble-
some parts of the coal-box ; to make them, get four
Bamboo Coal- box.
1-in. bamboo canes with root ends, which should be
trimmed up first by burning them ^vell in a gas jet or
with a spirit lamp and rasping them close down,
but not to destroj^ the appearance of the root. The
134. — Baniboi) Coal-box.
baiuboutt as imported are 6 ft. 6 in. long ; and for
the legs do not cut any off until they are bent to the
required shape, for the greater the leverage the
better the bend.
Legs of Bamboo Coal-box.
If space will admit of it, chalk out the shape of
a leg on the floor, and taking 9| in. as the height of
the box outside, plan it out as shown in Fig. 135,
the box when mounted being 4 in. from the floor,
124 Bamboo Work.
and the bottom and top ends of each leg extending
about the same distance on either side ; then, by
bending each leg to correspond with the chalked
plan, they are sure to be exact. If, however, space
is limited, place the box on its side and bend one
leg to the required shape, trying it several times
during the process of bending, and, taking the j&rst
one as a pattern, bend the others to it.
Having cut off the legs to their proper length
and plugged the foot end, proceed to fix them to the
box, laying the box on its side and fixing one with
two 2-in. round-headed brass screws into the ends
of the box, taking care to drill all holes for screws
first in the bamboo, or it will split. Then take the
Fig. 136. — Iron Lining for Bamboo Coal-box.
second leg, lay it across m its proper position, and
mark the under one with a pencil where the top one
crosses ; then they are halved out, and having thus
fitted one into the other, screw on the second leg,
and also put a screw through where the two legs
cross ; then turn the box over and proceed with the
The bamboo dado is formed by splitting canes in
halves lengthways ; the canes can be bought ready
split. The width for the sides and ends is | in., and
\ in. for the lid ; and in the case of the latter it is
fixed on to the edges. The dado or edging for the
ends of the box can be fixed before the legs are
screwed on, the corners being mitred, but the
edging on the sides is put on after the legs are fixed.
The bamboo for the lid being fixed on the edges, a
strip of black or white split beading cane is fixed
on the top side as a finish off ; and it is better to
hinge the lid on first before putting on the dado,
and be careful to see it does not interfere with the
lid closing Hat.
The hinges are those known as brass strap coal-
box hinges ; they are made in a fancy pattern, and
screwed on the outside with round-headed brass
screws. The lining which holds the coals should
be made of No. 24 B.W.G. sheet iron with folding
handles for lifting out and is best made in galvanised
iron ; if made in black iron it should be well jap-
anned to prevent rust ; it is illustrated by Fig. 136,
Fig. 137.— Bamboo Fender. Fig. 138.
with Strip removed.
-Section of Cane
which also gives a sectional view of the bottom ;
this, it will be seen, is made on the slope, thus
enabling the coals to be easily got at.
A fender (Fig. 137) is easily made ; take two stout
bamboos long enough to make the sides and front.
Where the bend is to be, rasp out two holes as
shown, and bend them round the uprights. The
ends and centre-bars can be let in holes bored with
a biace and bit. The bottom, or tray, should be
made of sheet brass, cut to fit, and fixed on the ends
of the uprights (which should be plugged and pinned)
v.'ith stout screws.
Fern-cases and aquaria can be made partly with
bamboo, the framework being formed of canes that
have each had a strip about a third of their cir-
cumference cut out by a cutting gauge (Fig. 11, p. 25),
Fig. 138, p. 125, is a section of a cane so treated. Saw
out notches to allow of angle joints being made (see
Fig. 139), and fit in the glass with red lead. The
cross-pieces lap over the angles where the bamboos
are glued together. Scrape off the natural polish
with a piece of glass or roughen with a rasp to pro-
vide a better holding surface for the glue. Use the
square freely ; make all joints true, and bind them
together with stout twine, which should not be
Fig. 139.— Angle Joint for Aquarium. Figs. 140 and 141.
— Bamboo Camera Stand.
removed for two or three days if possible, although
this is not absolutely necessary. The work may,
when done, be French polished.
Picture-fames can be made of bamboo if a sec-
tion is cut out as shown in Fig. 138, p. 125. The
mitres can be made as described on p. 34, and illus-
trated by Fig. 24. It will be necessary to plug the
ends of the canes. A bamboo photograph frame is
illustrated on p. 141.
A small bamboo stand for supporting a light
Bamboo Flower- Pot Stand.
camera may be made as follows : — Prepare a cylin-
drical block of hard wood as A (Fig. 140), boring it
through the centre and making cuts B, c, and D.
Into these fit firmly the flat hinge blades E of the
caps (Fig. 141), passing a pin or rivet through
each on which the caps turn (see dotted lines f and g).
Through the central hole H pass a brass rod l about
Fig. 142. — Flower-pot or Jardiniere Stand.
1 ft. long with a screw thread cut on it, to go into
the camera base. At K insert a coarse-thread nut
to take a thumb-screw^ m, which bites against L, for
fixing it at any height. Fit each of three small
bamboo canes with ferrules and insert tightly in the
metal caps, and the stand is complete.
For the flower-pot or jardiniere stand shown in
Fig. 142, select three canes about 4- in. diameter for
the uprights, and curve thern at one end to form the
feet. Curve them before cutting to precise length.
The cane first bent should be used as a guide for the
other two, in order that the three may be curved
alike. From |-in. cane cut off six lengths, each
10 in. ; fit, dowel, and clamp up as shown in Fig. 143.
With a brace and small bit bore holes in the uprights
Fig. 143.— Triangle for Bamboo Stand. Fig. 144,
nate Design for Flower-jiot Stand.
to receive the tria,ngles, about six inches from the
bottom and top. Fix the triangles (first having
plugged up the outside ends) in the bored holes in
the uprights ; glue, and fasten with a 2-in. wire nail.
As shown in Fig. 142, three 5-in. stays are fastened
at the top ; these pieces are dowelled, rasped to fit,
and fixed in their places with fine wire nails.
Bamboo Floiver-pot Stand.
The bottom portion of an alternative design is
shown by Fig. 144, in which are four uprights con-
nected together by a cross, which consists of one
cane with a dowel through the centre, and two
pieces fitted to the dowel on either side (see Fig. 30,
p. 36). Fig. 145 shows the top of a tripod to support
a flower-pot or jardiniere ; the construction of the
bottom may be the same as in Fig. 142. The tops
Fig. 14o. — Bamboo Tripod for Jardiniere.
are slightly bent out, and a rasped root fastened in
the centre. This is plugged at the bottom and a
hook inserted for the hanging pot.
Fig. 146, p. 130, is a view of a bamboo flower-
stand which will hold three pots. For the centre,
which should be 3 ft. 3 in. high, use l^-in. cane, and
for the three supports, 1 in. cane. The three
spindles should be of |-in. cane, 14 in. long, plugged
at each end, and let into the centre cane at one end
and into supports at the other. The supports are
screwed to the centre cane with l|-in. round-headed
screws. The lengths of the three supports should
be made to correspond with the size of the pot to
be placed on the shelf. The heart-shaped shelf is
of |-in. deal, covered with matting, and slipped
round with split bamboo ; or, if preferred, two rows
of thick rattan (beading cane) can be used in pre-
ference. The shelves are screwed on through the
centre rod, and supported by two struts fastened
Fig'. 146.— Bamboo Flower-pot Stand.
to the supports with 1-in. panel pins. The centre
rod is mortised at the top and dowelled, and a piece
of l^-in. bamboo is cut for the handle, which is
screwed into the centre-rod.
A bamboo flower-pot stand for the window is
shown in side and front view respectively by Figs. 147
and 148. |-in. canes are used for uprights and hori-
zontal pieces, and where they cross file notches in
the uprights, and fasten them together with screws ;
|-in. canes are used for the diagonal pieces, and let
into the horizontal ones just through one side. The
Bamboo Flower-pot Stand.
lengths of the necessary canes are : For the two ends,
parts A and b (Figs. 147 and 148), four pieces each
22 in. long ; two pieces for c 16 in. long ; two for d
10 in. long ; four uprights, J and k, 3 ft. long ; two
for I 2 ft. 6 in. long ; two for h 2 ft. long. These are
laid out as shown in Fig. 147, and the position of the
holes for the diagonal stays marked and bored. The
stays then are put in the holes, and the whole
Fig. 147.— Bamboo Flower-pot Stand for Window.
fastened with screws. Having made the two ends,
the three shelves are next wanted ; ^-in. stuff 7^ in.
wide may be used, and the holes in them must be
a good fit for the cane ; the top shelf can then be
put on, but the other shelves must have pieces cut
out of the side, as shown in Fig. 149. When the
shelves are on, the stand will be fairly firm, but to
make it more so, stays are put from w and w', to x ard
x', and from Y to z, Fig. 148 ; these pass the back of
the shelves, and are screwed to them.
As has frequently been remarked in the fore-
going pages, bamboo canes lend themselves to the
construction of all articles of furniture that, neces-
sarily strong, are preferably light and graceful also.
More especially is this fact to be noted in the case
of flower-pot stands and lamps tands, which have to
support heavy weights and so must be strong and
serviceable ; the collapse of either article would be
particularly annoying, and in the case of the lamp-
Fig, 148. — Bamboo Flower-pot Stand for Window.
stand, would be attended with much danger, were
the lamp in use. All bamboo lamp-stands should be
carefully weighted (see p. 44) to prevent top-heavi-
ness. It may be remarked that many stands serve
equally well as either lamp or flower-pot supports.
A very simple tripod lamp-stand is shown by
Fig. 150. To prevent the stand upsetting, break
through the knot at the bottom of each stick, fill
it with sand, and plug the end ; also fix a piece of
Bamboo Lamp-stand. 133
sheet-lead underneath the shelf. Tripod lamp-
stands are usually about 5 ft. high, the ring to hold
the lamp being fixed about 4 in. from the top.
This ring is 8 in. or 9 in. diameter, made of stout
Fig. 149.— Shelf of Window-stand.
beading cane spliced together. The legs at the
bottom should be at least 18 in. apart, the shelf being
triangular with equal sides, made up of wood covered
Fig. 150. — I'amboo Lamp-stand.
with matting or Japanese paper and edged with
bamboo. The bottom ends of uprights are slightly
bent outwards to give the stand a firmer holding,
the uprights being of l^-in. bamboo.
For the lamp-stand (Fig. 151) take three long,
stout bamboos. Three-legged articles always stand
firm— that is, they do nob rock as a four-legged table
does sometimes, especially where the floor is not
quite level ; and where a lamp is concerned this
is a very important consideration. Bend the
legs and tops to hold the reservoir of the lamp. Bind
the standards together with bands of brass, copper,
Fig. 151. — Bamboo Lamp-stand.
or wrought iron ; or they may be glued and pinned
only. Beauty and strength are added to the work
by using ornamental copper bands, pierced with
trefoils, quatrefoils, or, if possible, ornamented by
repousse work. The top, to hold the oil container,
should be made of a band of metal, although it is
quite possible to make it of bamboos, bent in a cir-
cular shape and joined together by wooden plugs
pinned and glued in. It is, however, rather diffi-
cult to bend bamboo into a perfect circle. Whether
Bamboo Overmantel. 135
the ring is of bamboo or metal, it is fixed with
One way of making a bamboo overmantel is first
to construct a frame of wood, which should be re-
bated to hold the glass, especially if this is to be
heavy plate. The front surface could then be
1 .V2. — Bamboo Overmant(jl.
covered over with split bamboos, fixed on with very
fine French nails or screws and a little glue. Another
way is to cut a small strip out of the cane lengthways
(Fig. 138, p. 125), and fit together with mitre-joints.
In this method the glass must be fitted in before the
last side is fixed on, and there is also a danger of the
canes warping or twisting and breaking the glass,
136 Ba mboo Wo k k.
especially if it be at all thin. Probably the easiest
way is to build up the foundation of plain deal, which
can afterwards be painted brown, and covered all
over with bamboo as described above. Whether the
joints should be simply halved or mortised depends
upon the quality of work required.
A simple bamboo overmantel is illustrated by
Fig. 152, p. 135, and Fig. 153 shows the back of it.
The canes used should be 1^-in. for the uprights and
rails, and |-in. for the filling. Cut off two pieces,
each 36 in, long, for the uprights, and five pieces,
each 30 in. long, for the rails. Fit the rails on to
the uprights, remembering that the irregular char-
acter of bamboo does not allow of the substitution
one for another of parallel parts such as these rails.
The uprights should be bored and fitted with dowels,
and the whole section framed together and left to
dry. While it is drying the filling can be made. The
shelves can also be prepared ; these should be made
either of lacquer, or of wood stained and varnished,
or covered with Japanese leather paper. The large
shelf should be 13 in. long and 4 in. wide, and the
two smaller shelves 8 in. long and 4 in. wide. The
front and side edges of these shelves may be slipped
with split bamboo nailed on with fine wu-e nails.
When the section is thoroughly set, the two uprights,
which are to form the sides for the mirror, should be
fitted into their places. The canes should be
dowelled, care being taken v\'hen gluing in the dowels
that they do not project in the least bej^ond the
hollowed edge of the tube ; also that the hollowed
edge be not injured during the fitting of the dowel.
These uprights should be fixed into theii' places
by boring a hole through the cross-rails and fasten-
ing with a 2-in. fine wire nail. Care should be taken
that the space between these rails is 12 in. wide to
allow of the Avidth of the glass ; also that the distance
between the two cross-rails is 20 in.
Two rails must now be fitted between the outside
and inside uprights, midway between the rails which
form the top and bottom of the glass frame, to form
a support to which the shelves will have to be fixed.
The two fillings or " cracks," as they are called
amongst bamboo workers, should now be fixed into
their places. The cross (X) filling is very simply
made ; a piece of cane is fitted with the rasp diagon-
ally across the opening to be filled, and fastened into
its place with beading pins ; two short pieces are
now fitted the alternative way, and so the X is
Fig. 1.53. — Bick Section of Bamboo Overmantel.
formed. A piece of bamboo, 14 in. long, for the
top of the overmantel, and two pieces, each 4 in.
long, to form the uprights, should now be cut. The
two uprights should be chisel-pointed, and rasped to
fit, the one end on to the top rail of the overmantel,
and the other to the rail just prepared. Two holes
should be bored in the top rail to receive the end of
the wooden dowels, wliich should go right through
the short uprights and lastly be fixed into two holes
bored in the top piece at the same distances as in the
top rail. The shelves now should be fixed by boring
through the back of the rails and fastening by wire
nails. Two stays of f-in. cane should be prepared
and fixed into position under the two small brackets ;
these stays resemble the one shown by Fig. 70, p. 63.
A rebate must be formed in the rattan cane for the
reception of the glass. Except for cleaning off the
surplus glue and varnishing, the overmantel is now
Fig. 154. — Bamboo Overmantel.
Fig. 154 shows a rather more elaborate over-
mantel, but after the frame (Fig. 155) is squarely
made the rest of the work is very simple. From
l^-in. or 1^-in. canes cut off one piece 4 ft. 1 in. long,
two pieces each 3 ft. long, and two pieces each 3 ft.
11 in. long, to form the bottom rail and uprights of
overmantel. One end of each upright should be
chisel-pointed, plugged, and fitted temporarily into
the place it will occupy on the bottom rail. The
distances are given in Fig. 155. Rails a a, b b, and c
should now be got out and fitted (for lengths when
fitted, see Fig. 155). To fix the rails b b into position
a hole should be drilled through the four uprights
the same size as the hollow of the rails to be filled,
and a dowel passed through and fastened into the
rails at each side. The rails a and c are fitted and
ri». 155. — Framino of Bamboo Overmantel.
fixed in the manner before described. The centres
of the cracks or fillings are made of Japanese lacquer.
The easiest size to cut pieces of lacquer is 4 in. wide
by 10 in. long, and they must be fastened to the bam-
boo by wire nails, the angles being hollowed. Then
fit the whole together.
A half design of an overmantel is given by
Fig. 156, p. 140. Cut four bamboos for the uprights
and three for the large cross-pieces, these latter to be
about 2 in. longer than the actual width will be
when finished. With a round rasp cut the ends to
fit on to the uprights. They can be fastened with
glue and a few small brass pins. If required to be
extra strong, plug the ends of the cross-pieces with
wood, and pin them to the uprights. The shelves
Y\%. lo6. — Half-elevation of Bamboo Overmantel.
can be made of thin fret-wood, held in position by
needle-points or long brads.
A photograph frame is illustrated by Fig. 157. To
make it, first obtain some lengths of bamboo of about
1 in. diameter, and cut two pieces, each 17 in. long,
for the uprights A (Fig. 157) ; two pieces, each 17^ in.
long, for the outer rails B ; two pieces, each 12 in.
long, for the middle divisions c ; and three pieces,
each 6 in. long, for the small rails d. Plug the ends
of the two uprights and shape the ends of the outer
rails to fit, cutting them down till there is a
distance of 15^ in. between the uprights. Fill up
the rails, and nail them to the uprights, leaving a
space of 11 in. between them. Place the division
rails at equal distances apart, and nail them in, and
then put in the small rails so as to leave a space for
a cabinet photograph, as shown. From ^-in. wood
cut out two pieces shaped as at e, and nail them on,
slanting them forward at an angle of about 45 de-
grees. These pieces support the shelves f. For the
beading, split some cane and nail it in, mitring the
corners. Put a handle on the top, and screw on ear-
plates to hang it by. For a picture frame, see p. 126.
A rack, arranged to accommodate ten pipes,
the stem of each one being held in a piece of bamboo,
is shown by Fig. 158. The frame measures 15 in.
by 8 in. inside, the central rail being strengthened
142 Bamboo Work.
by centre uprights. The ornamental work is op-
tional ; the bent work is made of thin bamboo or
other cane. The pieces for the pipe holders should be
about 4 in. long, with the knot close to the bottom
end ; and the supports for these should be dowelled
into the frame.
Fig-. 158.— Bamboo Rack for Ten Pipes.
The rack shown by Fig. 159 is for nine pipes ; the
back frame is the same size as Fig. 158, but the
centre rail or traverse is fixed lower down, as it
forms part of the framework for the pipe rack, which
is a piece of thin wood about 2^ in. deep and covered
with Japanese lacquer paper. Or the rack could be
made of a piece of Japanese lacquer and enclosed in
a fi'amework of bamboo, the side pieces of which
are dowelled into the back uprights, and further
strengthened with bamboo brackets, top and bottom,
either bent as shown or straight. In the back of
Ba mboo Screens,
Fig. ] 59 a mirror is shown, but if desired this space
could be filled in with lacquer or w^ood covered with
Japanese paper. The frame w^ork of both Figs. 158
and 159 should be of |-in. cane, and the filling-in
parts of ^-in. bamboo. In jointing, always use
dowels where possible, but for filling-in pieces,
plugged ends are strong enough ; use glue for the
joints, and further secure with a bamboo wire pin.
A four-fold screen frame, each fold being 6 ft.
high by 3 ft. wide, is shown by Fig. 160. The screen
could be made 6 ft. 6 in. high if desired, as the bam-
boos are imported that length ; but a greater height
Fig. IGO. — Four-fold Bamboo Screen.
Fig. 161.— Screen
involves a join, and screens are not usually required
higher than 6 ft. 6 in. However, 6 ft. is considered
the most suitable height. Eight l^-in. bamboos
will be required for the uprights, with the ends
plugged as far as is possible. It is assumed that
it is the intention to cover the frame with some sort
of material, so only three cross-rails or traverses
are put in each, these being of 1-in. bamboo, dowelled
into the uprights, the dowel being well glued in and
secured with a bamboo pin on the outside. When
the traverses are fitted to the uprights, say, of the
first fold, clamp the fold up firmly with strong cord,
getting it to a tight tension by twisting a wooden
stick in it (see pp. 23 and 24), and leave it until the
glue is quite set ; and so on with the remaining three
To give additional strength, short bamboo stays can
be fixed above and below the top and bottom rails, as
shown, the stays being plugged, cut, and rasped to
shape, and secured Avith glue and pins. To hinge
the folds together flat brass plates, as shown m
Fig. 161, are fixed either with a brass-headed wire
Fig. 162. — Two-fold Bamboo Screen.
nail or round-headed screw to both top and bottom
of uprights, the end uprights being finished off with
wooden buttons or terminals. Coat the ^vork, when
finished, with white spirit varnish.
A two-fold fire-screen is shown by Fig. 162. For
this, three 1-in. canes and one fin. cane will be re-
quked. Cut off four pieces from the thickest end
of the 1-in. canes, each 2 ft. 6 in. long, which will
Bamboo Scree, vs.
form the uprights, and six pieces, each 7 in. long,
which allows 1 in. for the hollowing of their ends to
fib the round surface of the uprights. One end of
each rail must be fitted, first being hollowed as
nearly as possible the same size as the cane itself.
In consequence of the irregularity of bamboo cane
it is necessary to fit each joint separately in the
position it is to occupy. The rails and uprights
should be marked with a saw-scratch, say, to prevent
the possibility of mistake w^hen gluing up. For the
fitting of the second ends of the four cross-rails a
Fig. 163. — Framing of Bamboo Screen.
thin piece of wood must be cut 12 in. long to serve
as a measure. One by one the rails should be placed
in the position to w^hich they are fitted, and the 12 in.
marked off upon each with the assistance of the
measure. In fitting the second ends, care must be
taken that the hollows fall into the same plane as
the first, otherwise they will not fit when the two
uprights are parallel to one another.
Four bamboo canes, framed together into a square
or oblong, form what bamboo workers call a " sec-
tion." This is made clear on pp. 49 and 50. Much of
the most important bamboo work cQn§i§t§ jn little
146 Bamboo Work.
else than the framing up and filling in of sections and
the fitting of them together. Accurate work is of the
most importance in the framing up of sections ; if
they are not perfectly flat and rectangular, the error
cannot fail to be noticed when the article is com-
pleted. Straight canes and true joints will secure
the flatness of a section, and accurate measurements
will secure its squareness. The two sections must
now be framed up. The cross-rails are fastened to
the uprights by means of wooden dow^els or plugs
about 3 in. long. The dowels should be fitted first
to the cross-rails, then to the holes in the uprights.
All the joints having been made to fit satisfactorily,
the dowels must be glued first into the holes in the
uprights. When attaching the cross-rails, it is
Fii?. 164. — Fillin"- for Bamboo Screen.
desirable to run a little glue into the tube as well as
to glue the projecting end of the dowel, and for this
purpose a piece of cane chamfered out at the end
wall make a useful gluing stick. The three cross-
rails must be attached to one of the uprights first,
the second upright being afterw^ards attached in the
same way, and the whole gluing-up process done as
quickly as possible. When the frame is together it
must be clamped up at each end with string, as
described on pp. 23 and 24, and illustrated by Fig.
163. After seeing that the sections are square, they
should be put on one side for some hours to allow
the glue to set.
The fancy filling work may be made from |-in.
cane while the two sections are setting. Fig. 164
shows the construction ; the four long rails should
be cut off 12 in. long, and the short rails 5 in. long ;
these should be hollowed out and dowelled. As
these are for decorative work only, the pieces can
be fastened together w^ith fine panel pins. When
the sections are thoroughly set, the fillings (Fig. 164)
should be placed over the places they are to
occupy, and the exact size for fitting marked off
wilh a pencil. They should then be chisel-pointed,
rasped, and fitted into their places with glue and
fine beading pins.
Fio'. I60. — Elevation of Bamboo Fire-screen.
If the screen is to be filled with needlework, or
any kind of work that requires stretching, a wood
frame now should be made. The knots on the inside
of the bamboo frame should, however, first be rasped
down flat, so that the wood frame will fit in evenly.
The wood frame can be fixed in by boring holes
through the bamboo and fastening with fine wire
nails. The small space existing between the wood
frame and the bamboo should be filled with
split rattan cane fastened op with beading pins, and
carefully mitred at the corners. If the screen is to
be filled with glass, a rebate must be formed by-
fastening on split rattan cane. The glass must now
be put into position and fastened in on the other
side. The frame is now complete with the excep-
Fig. 166. — Plan of Bamboo Fire-screen.
tion of joining together and varnishing. The join-
ing together can be done by two hinges made of tape,
and fastened m a similar manner to the hinges fo a
clothes-horse ; or by two pieces of brass, shaped as
167. — Bamboo Fire-screen.
in Fig. 161, p. 143, fastened to the top and bottom of
the inside uprights of each fold by screws, the hollow
of the uprights being first plugged. The top
now should be fitted with wood or metal terminals,
and the whole should receive a coat of spirit varnish.
An elevation and plan of a fire-screen are pre-
sented by Figs. 165, p. 147, and 166, p. 148, respect-
ively. The screen has a row of rails at top and bottom.
A piece of iron bent to the proper angle should be
screwed inside the framing at A and B (Fig. 166). The
openings are filled with leaded glass, which can be
fixed by narrow strips of bamboo screwed on each
side. Mirrors or cathedral glass could be inserted
in the openings if desired. If glass is not desirable,
use silk or needlework stretched on light frames, or
Fig. 168. — Side Upright of Bamboo Fiie-screen.
the frames could be covered with canvas stretched
tightly, and pictures pasted on ; afterwards the
pictures would require to be sized and varnished.
For the fire-screen shown by Fig. 167, use 1-in.
bamboo canes. To make the legs, cut off two
lengths, each 38 in., and two pieces 9^ in. long for
the bottom stretchers, to make 8^ in. when rasped.
Fit each stretcher to the bottom of the legs ; drill
holes in the centres of the stretchers, and fix dowels ;
then nail to the legs. Cut off two pieces 11 in. long,
to make when rasped 10 in., and fit these for leg
supports ; glue up, clamp, and leave till dry. With
brace and bit, bore holes for dowels at distances, as
sliown in Fig, 168 ; the top hole in each side is to
be bored through, and the dowel taken right through
to hold the Oxford corner, as shown at A, Fig. 167.
Cut four pieces, each 19 in. long, and rasp the ends
to fit the legs ; dowel, rasp two pieces, B B, 3 in. long,
plug, and fit to the top cross-bar. Cut a piece, c,
7 in. long ; plug this and fix to the top w4bh glue and
fine nails. Rasp two pieces to be 4 in. long, and
169. — Three-loid IJamUoo Screen.
fasten between the two top and the tw^o bottom cross-
bars. Glue and clamp the whole up with string or
clamps. When dry — say in tw^enty-four hours — fix
in the bottom supports and ornamental centre-pieces
(which are made with thin Whangee cane) with fine
French nails. Rasp off the knots where the panel
goes and fasten in the panel w4th split cane. The
filling-in of any screen may be with needlework,
Japanese worked panel, lacquered panel, painted
glass, or drawn silk, according to fancy,
A three-fold screen is shown by Fig. 169, and it
may have the folio whig measurements : height 40 in.,
with inside 12 in. ; size of panels, 24 in. by 12 in. ;
spaces between top and bottom rails, 4 in. ; use |-in.
canes. Each section should be framed together as
before described, and the small pieces between the
rails must be made up before putting in. The fasten-
ing of the folds together is described on p. 148.
Another three-fold screen is illustrated by Fig. 170.
Fiu-. 170. — ThrLO-fold Bamboo Sen
1-in. canes should be used for the framework ; ^-in.
cane is suitable for the filling, and for all rooted work
(except the centre root, which should be 1 in.). Suit-
able measurements for this screen are : four centre
uprights, 40 in. long ; width for the centre, 28 in. ;
outside uprights, 38 in. long ; inside width of outer
folds 12 in.
A whatnot screen is shown by Fig. 171, p. 152 ; it
has rooted bamboo, rasped down, for feet. The legs
should be made first. Fig. 172 gives lengths. Two
Japanese lacquered panels, 18 in. by 10 in., can be
used in this screen. The edges of the panels will
be slipped with split bamboo, mitred at the corners,
and fastened on with fine wire nails (two pieces
of cane having first been nailed to the short sides in
the form of a semicircle). This edging should stand
very slightly above the surface of the panel. An
angle will thus be formed to receive a beading of
very thin cane, nailed in with f-in. panel pins ; this
Fig. 171 Fig. 172
171. — Bamboo Whatnot Screen. Fig. 172.— Side of
Bamboo Whatnot Screen.
has been described before. 2-in. French nails should
be driven into the centre of the 10 in. sides, project-
ing \ in., to form pivots on which the panels partly
revolve. A very small hole should be made in each
of the two legs, at distances of about 16 in. and 26 in.
from the bottom, to receive the pins or pivots. Fit
the top and bottom rails, dowel, glue, and clamp up.
The tops of the uprights and any projecting ends of
bamboo may be plugged, and turned wood terminals
glued on to give a finish.
BAMBOO MAIL -C ART.
One of the most popular applications of bamboo is
in the construction of light, but strong, mail carts.
Bamboo is a material specially suited for this work
on account of its elasticity and lightness.
Fig. 173, p. 154, is a side view of a single mail-cart,
having a circular-shaped back ; in front are two
8 in. wheels, enabling the mail-cart to be run on all
four wheels. Fig. 174, p. 151, shows the wooden
seat, and the position and number of the upright bal-
usters and part of the shafts underneath. Fig. 175,
p. 155, illustrates the rear end of the well, w, showing
how it is let into the shafts, s s. This well is of wood,
being finished at the edges with bamboo. Fig. 176
show^s the manner of making the circular rail, R
(Fig. 173), under the top bamboo rail T (Fig. 173),
forming the body. This rail is li in. broad and | in.
thick, and its purpose is to secure the balusters in
place, and to fix the bamboo rail over it. If the
bamboo rail, t, can be bent properly, it may be fixed
direct to the tops of the balusters without the inter-
vening wooden rail, R (Fig. 173). The tendency,
however, is for the upper rail to spread outwards,
making an unshapely body. The springs are clearly
shown in Fig. 173, the actual spring really being one
piece from its end at e to the foot f ; the other part,
Q, is formed by the rods carrying the small wheels.
A pair of bamboo shafts, 4 ft. long and l| in. thick,
will be required ; bend them to the form shown by
Fig. 173. The handle portion of the bend, where the
shaft dips slightly, cannot be shown in Fig. 173,
owing to limited space. When bent, the handles
should be about 9 in. above the level of seat. Make a
seat-board, 15 in. across, and the same from front to
back, and | in. thick, the grain to run across from
shaft to shaft. The seat-board may be of pine, but
preferably is of tougher wood, such as oak or ash.
Cut the board to the shape shown by Fig. 174, and
fix with s-crews on the under-side from front to back ;
a fillet of wood 2 in. w-ide by \ in. thick supports the
circular end, which is unsupported by the shafts.
Mark off the board for the baluster holes 1 in. from
the edge. These holes aref in. in diameter, and
are bored only half through the board, with the ex-
ception of the two marked xx (Fig, 171), which go
Fig. 175.— End of Mail-cart Well.
quite through, and fix the board to the bamboo
shafts. Before fixing the seat-board to the shafts,
the balusters forming the body are fixed in their
places. These, as will be seen, are not of equal
lengths ; the height at the centre of back is 10^ in.,
while at the rear end, u (Fig. 173), it is 9 in. The
bamboo rail is in one piece all round the body, as
shown at t. Fig. 173, its ends passing through the
seat-board, and being w^edged. If the bend presents
great difficulty, the bamboo may be mitred, form-
ing a corner ; see the dotted lines at u (Fig. 173).
The well, w (Fig. 173), is made from \ in. wood,
and is of a length to fit inside the shafts ; it is 6 in.
wide at top, and 5 in. deep. The inner face of the
well is made to join the under-side of the seat.
where they are nailed together ; the outer face (see
Fig. 175) rises above the shafts some 3 in., and is
curved, as shown. To the edges of the well the
bamboo, | in. diameter, is fitted by rebating, as is
seen in Fig. 177, which represents a section of a
rebated cane at a node. The bamboo is mitred at
the meeting points, the top part being bent to the
curve (Fig. 175) ; and is fixed on with fine wire nails.
If a rail (Fig. 176) is made, it should be of a tough
hard wood. It is of the same width as the seat,
Fig. 176. — Upper Frame of Mail-cart. Fig. 177. — Section
of Checked Bamboo.
15 in. outside measure, and divided the same as
for the balusters, but it has two holes less at the
rear end. Note that the holes, both in the seat and
in this rail, must be bored with the brace on the
slant, to allow the backward lean or rake to the bal-
usters. In the length of the longest balusters this
rake is 3 in. The rail (Fig. 176) is bored half through
only, and when the balusters are cut and fitted into
seat and rail, they are nailed with \\ in. wire brads
passing through the wood into the ends of the
balusters. For the top rail, t (Fig. 173), 1 in. bamboo
Bamboo Mail-cart. 157
is bent to the shape of the wood rail, r, and fixed to
it by fine 1^ in. screws, passing through rail, R,
from under-side. The ends of T, if made to
descend to the shafts, are wedged in the seat-
board. After the body has thus been completed, it
is fixed to the shafts by screws passing through the
seat-board, as above mentioned. The well is then
fixed in its place, the bamboo being cut away to fit
between the shafts, as shown in Fig. 175, s s.
The steel springs are 1 in. by \ in. , set to the shape
shown in Fig. 173, the axle being 6 in. from bottom
of shafts. The springs at e (Fig. 173) are fixed by
two screws to the ends of the shafts, and under the
well, w, each by two screws. The leg, r (Fig. 173), is
9 in. long, and tied by a wire, z, which is let through
the leg, and through the spring a little in front of the
well, w, where the end is turned over.
The larger wheels are 25 in. diameter, with \ in.
rubber tyres, and the smaller wheels 8 in. diameter,
also with rubber tyres ; the axle of the small wheels
is fixed in eyes, and runs across the front. The
wheels may be inside the caiTying irons, or outside,
at option. When placed inside, a small collar must
be made on the fixed shaft, to keep the wheels up to
the carrying irons. In Fig. 173 these wheels are
shown on the groimd line with the mail-cart level ;
they should be elevated by setting up the irons till
they are some 3 in. off the ground when the seat is
In Fig. 173 two compartments of the body are
shown filled with | in. laced bamboo or cane. These
may be put in all the compartments or every second
one ; they are bent, fitted in, and fixed with | in.
fine wire brads. The wood-work and cane may be
varnished (the latter with white shellac spirit
varnish) and the iron-work painted or enamelled,
according to taste.
American Brace, 21
Angle Joint, 35
Annam, Bamboo in, 15, ]0
Aquaria Framing, 125
Arundinaria, 9, 13
Arundo, 9, 13
Bahy's Folding Chairj 65
High Chair, 64
Bamboo Articles [see sepaiate head-
— Canes (see Canes)
, Imitation, 89, 40
, Uses of. 12, 14-17
Bambusa, 9, 10, 18
Bay-pole Joint, 36, 37
Beading, Cane, 51, 52
Bedroom Furniture, 68-81
Bedstead, 68, 69
Bench Hole, Bending Cane in, 80, 81
Bending Bamboo, 24-43
. . in Bench Hole, 30, 81
■ , Benzoliue Blow-lamp for, 25
, Bunsen Burner for, 25
. , Candle-torch for, 27
by Hot Water, 1
, Iron for, 27
at Knot, 29
, Principle of, 24
, Spirit Lamps for, 25, 26
into Scrolls, 30
to Sharp Curve, 29
• by Steam, 31, 82
, Steam Chest for, 82
to Uniform Curve, 30
Blinds, Window, 114-118
Bookcase Backs, 110
and China Cupboard, 106-109
Shelves, Supporting, 110, 111
Bookshelf above Desk, 112
Bookshelves, 110, 111
Brace and Drills, 20, 21
Cabinet, Music, 104-106
, Shnple, 9d-104
Camera Stand, 126
Bending (see Bending)
, Black, 18
, Board used in Rasping, 22
Canes, Colouring, 39
, Cutting, into Strips, 24, 62
, Darkening, 38, 39
, Grooving, 24
, Mahogany, 18
, Mottled, 18
, Mottling, 38
, Purchasing, 18
, Rebating, 87
, Removing Knots from Inside, 38
, Scorching, 38
, Sizes of, IS
Splitting whilst Bending, 32
, Staining, 39
, Straightening, 33
, Tortoise-shell, 18
, Varnishing, 39
, Yellow. IS
, , Mottluig, 38
Canterbury, Music, and Table Com-
bined, 97, 98
Cart, Mail, 153-157
Carvings, Bamboo, 112
Chair, Babv's Folding, 65
, Child's High, 64
, Rocking, 66
, Simple, 58
, for Two Persons, 62, 63
Child's Cot, 70-72
Folding Chair, 65
High Chair, 64
China Cupboard and Bookcase Com-
Chinese Uses of Bamboo, 17
Clamping Joints, 28, 116, 146
Coal-box and Settee, 122-125
Colouring Canes, 39
Wood to Imitate Bamboo, 39
Combined China Cupboard aud Book-
Hall Seat and Table, 54-57
Music Canterbury and Table, 97,
Settee and Coal-box, 122-125
Corner Seat, 60, 61
Cot, Child's, 70-72
Cup-and-ball Joint, 36, 37
Cupboard, China, and Bookcase Com-
Cutting Strips of Baml>oo, 24, 62
Cutting -gauge, 24
Cracks or Fillings, 47, bl, 66, S3, 92-
94, 99, 109, 112, 137, 146, 157
Cracks in Caues, Filling for, 38
Cramp and Table, Fretworker's, 21, 22
Darkening Canes, 38, 3',t
Dendrocalamus, 9, 13
Desk, Bookshelf above, 112
, Writing, 53. o4
Diagonal Joint, 3(5
Dowelled Joints, 34, 35
Dowels, Wood for, 35
Dressing Table, 72-76
Drills and Brace, 20, 21
Fern-case, Framing, 125
Filling for Cracks, 38
Joints, 38, 72
Fillings or Cracks, 47, 61, <o^, 83, 92-
94, 99, 109, 112, 137, 146, 147
Fire Screens, 144-150
Fireplace Fender, 125
Flaps of Tea-table, 51, 52
Flower Pot, 15
Stand for Window, 130, 131
. Stands, 127-132
Food, Bamboo as, 12
Foot-rests of Child's Chair, 64, 65
Four-flap Tea Table, 48, 53
Four-fold Screen, 143, 144
Frame, Photograph, 140, 141
, Picture, 126
Frames, Window, 119-121
Fretworker's Cramps, 21, 22
Gigantochloa, 9, 13
Gilding Knots, 44
Glue, Preparing, 40
, Testing, 40
Glued Joints, 40
Gluing on Matting, 51
Grooves, Cutting Gauge for, 24
Hall Rack, 82, S3
Seat and Table Combined, 54-57
Hat Rack, 82, 83
and Umbrella Stands, 86-91
Herringbone Filling, m, 99
Hexagonal Table Top, 46
Hinge, Screen, 144
Hot Water, Bending Canes by, 31
Imitation Bamboo, 39, 40
Japanese Leather Paper, 18
Japanese Matting, 18
, Gluing on, 51
as Table Tops, 52
Jardiniere Stand, 127-129
Jointing Lengths of Caues, 36
Joints, Angle, 35
Joints, Bay-pole, 36, 37
, Clamping, 23, 116, 146
, Cup-and-ball, 36, 37
of Diagonal Pieces, 36
, Dowelled, 34, 35
, Dowels for, 35
, Filling for, 38, 72
, Glued, 40
, Mitred, 33
, Right Angle, 33-35
, Tee, 34, 35
Knives, Bamboo, 15
Knots, Bending Canes at, 29
, Gilding, 44
, Removing, Inside Canes, 38
Lacquer Panels, Japanese, 18
as Table Tops, 52
Lamp Stands, 132-135
Leather Paper, Japanese, 18
Leaves, Bamboo, Use of, 14
Legs, Fastening, to Table Top, 45,
Looking-glass with Bamboo Frame,
74, 80, 81
Looking-glasses or Overmantels, 135-
Magazine Racks, 92- 98
, Gluing on, 51
Bambusoides, 10, 11, 13
Mirror Frames, 74, 80, 81
Mirrors or Overmantels, 135-140
Mitre Block, 22, 46
Box, 22, 23
Mitred Joints, 33
Mitring Corners of Hexagonal Table
Mottling Yellow Canes, 38
Music Cabinets, 104-106
Canterburv and Table, 97, 98
Nandina Domestica, 10
Newspaper Racks, 92-98
Norias, Bamboo, 16
Occasional Tables, 44, 46
Panels, Japanese Lacquer, 18
, , as Table Tops, 52
Paper, Bamboo, 14
, Japanese Leather, 18
Photograph Frame, 140, 141
Picture Frames, 126
Pipe Racks, 141-143
Pipes, Bamboo, 15 j
Rack, Hall, 82, S3
Rack, Hat, 82, 83
, Music, 92-98
, Newspaper, 92-98
, Pipe, 141-143
Rebating Canes, 37
Rocking Chair, 66
Saw, Tenon, 24
Scaffolds, Bamboo, 14
Scorching Canes, 38
Screen, Fire, 144-150
— , Four-fold, 143, 144
, Three-fold, 150. 151
, Two-fold, 144-148
, Whatnot, 151, 152
Screw-holes, Filling for, 38
Scroll, Bending Cane to, 30
Seat, Corner, 60, 61
, Hall, and Table, 54-57
Sections, 49, 50, 145, 146
and Coal-box Combined, 122-125
for Two Persons, 62, 63
Shafts of Mailcart, 153, 155
Siielf Brackets, Table with, 43
of Window Flower Stand, 131
Shelves of Bookcases, 110, 111
Flower-pot Stand, 130
Split Canes, Cause of, 32
Springs of Mailcart, 157
Staining CaTies, 39
Stand, Camera, 126
, Flower-pot, 127-132
— -, Hall, 83-91
, Hat and Umbrella, 86-91
■ — -, Jardiniere, 127-129
, Lamp, 132-135
for Three Flower Pots, 129
, Tripod, for Jardiniere, 129
, , Lamp, 132, 133
, Umbrella, 83-91
, Weighting, to Avoid Topheavi-
, Writing, 113
Steam-Chest for Bamboo, 32
Steam-bending Bamboo, 31, 32
Stems of Bamboo Plants, 9, 10
Stopping (see Filling)
Straightening Canes, 33
String Clamp for Joints, 23, 116, 146
Strips of Cane, 24, 62
Swing Class with Bamboo Frame, SO,
Tabasbeer, 11, 12
Table, Dressing, 72-76
Flaps, 51, 52
, Four-flap, 48-53
and Hall Seat, Combined, 54-57
Legs, Fastening, 45, 46, 53
with Lower Shelf, 45
and Music Canterbury, Com-
bined, 97, 98
, Occasional, 44, 46
, Remedying Topheavy, 44
Top, Gluing Matting on, 51
, Hexagonal, 46
, Lacquer Panel as, 52
Tops, Fastening, to Legs, 45, 46, 53
with Shelf-brackets, 43
, Tea, 48-53
, Three-tray, 41
, Writing, 53, 54
Tea Table, Four-flap, 48-53
Tee Joints, 34, 35
Tenon Saw, 24
Tobacco Pipe Racks, 141-143
Topheaviness, Remedying, 44, 132
Three-division Music Racks, 94-97
Three-fold Screens, 150, 151
Three-tray Table, 41
Trays, Lacquer, 18
Tripod Stand for Jardiniere, 129
Lamp, 132, 133
Two-division Music Racks, 92-95
Two-fold Screen, 144-148
Umbrella Stands, 83-91
Upholstery on Bamboo Furniture, 67
Varnish, Cheap, 39
, Transparent, 39
, White Shellac, 39
Varnishing Canes, 39
Walking-stick Stands, 83-91
Water Wheels, Bamboo, 16
Weighting Topheavy Articles, 44, 132
Well of Mailcart, 155, 156
Whatnot Screen, 151, 152
Wheels of Mailcart, 157
Whetstone, Bamboo, 15
Window Blinds, 114-118
Flower-pot Stand, 130, 131
Wood for Dowels, 35
, Staining, 53
Writing Desk, Bookshelf above, 112
Table, 53, 54
Yellow Canes, Mottling, 83
(^ Pkintkd by Cassell & Co., Ltd., Ludgate Hill, London, E.G.
3 9999 06561 198 8
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