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Hand-tied Springs: 4-way v. 8-way

Started by Celeste, February 11, 2019, 09:24:58 am

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Celeste

Hi,

I have an antique settee (early 1900s) that I'd like to have reupholstered at some point. The springs are attached to/coiled around a sort of S-shape wire (thicker gauge than the springs) running parallel and perpendicular to the frame, instead of traditional webbing. The spring were tied 4-way instead of 8-way. They will probably have to be retied. Is there any reason other than cost that they would only have been tied four-way? The frame (mahogany) has some misalignment issues that I am not sure can be fixed (all joints are good/aligned except for two joints at the back/top of the frame). I was wondering whether the springs might have been tied four way instead of eight in order to put less pressure on the frame.

Thank you in advance for any advice you may have.

Celeste

MinUph

In Europe they say 4 way tie is better. Here in the States we say 8 way is better. I don't understand the thought of 4 way being better as it just doesn't bind the springs together as a unit as well. As for the misaligned frame it is hard to say without some pictures of the frame in question. And why are you here asking these questions anyway. I was under thi impression this was a trades only group.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

Celeste

The settee is from France so I guess that would explain it. I saw a couple of posts from non-trades people on this forum (like a mum who wanted to reupholster her own sectional) so I was under the impression that asking a technical question would be acceptable. Your answer is very helpful, thank you.

gene

The metal S or snake wire has me wondering if it is not more the middle of the 1900's than the beginning. If you are wanting authentic restoration then go with what they did originally on the settee. Also, is it possible that the settee has been reupholstered at least once and this upholsterer used 4 way because it was cheaper and quicker?

If you have a good upholsterer there may be reasons why he would want to replace the S wires with jute webbing. If you are not looking for authentic restoration I would find this OK.

If you are going to use the settee as a daily piece of furniture that gets a lot of use I would suggest 8 way. Are people and kids going to be flopping down on the settee on a regular basis? And as MinUph said that is our USA bias but it does hold the spring section together more as a single unit. If it's an occasional piece and you are trying to save money, and you have an upholsterer who doesn't mind doing 4 way, then I don't see any reason not to go this route.

I've been on this forum for about 13 years and have contributed some and have learned a lot. And this is the first time I heard that it's a trades only group. Newbies and amateurs are asking questions all the time. At first I thought MinUph was joking or knew you from some place else.

Maybe things have changed and I missed it. Anyway, I hope this forum was helpful to you.

gene
QUALITY DOES NOT COST, IT PAYS!

sofadoc

The 4-way has been the European standard for over 100 years.

Somewhere in 40's USA manufacturers began touting the 8-way as a superior method. Many Europeans to this day will contend that the 8-way is just a sales pitch.

I prefer the 8-way. But I notice that many now are employing more of a double 8-way. Basically 8-way tying them twice. I think this might be overkill. What's next? Just weld them all together?
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

Celeste

Thank you Gene and Sofadoc.
Yes, I think the S-wire is not original (based on what Gene said), because the settee is definitely from the early 1900s -- by Louis Majorelle, got it for a reasonable price because the frame has a lot of issues. Aside from the misalignment, it's also been refinished with a dark color and shiny coating that barely leaves the wood grain visible. My husband would rather have the frame realigned, I'd rather have it refinished to its original color. We may not be able to have both fixed, but it sounds like since the springs will have to be retied in any event, 8-way would be best.

kodydog

A few years back an upholsterer on fb stated he ties them 16 ways. I can only guess he was joking. Maybe this is the double 8-way Sofa speaks of. I double up in the front to back twine. This seems to be the area that gets the most stress.

My take on 8-way is when the twine starts to stretch out and break there is still plenty there to hold it all together. On 4-way when one or two pieces of twine breaks it compromise's the whole system.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html

kodydog

Quote from: Celeste on February 12, 2019, 08:54:53 am
Thank you Gene and Sofadoc.
Yes, I think the S-wire is not original (based on what Gene said), because the settee is definitely from the early 1900s -- by Louis Majorelle, got it for a reasonable price because the frame has a lot of issues. Aside from the misalignment, it's also been refinished with a dark color and shiny coating that barely leaves the wood grain visible. My husband would rather have the frame realigned, I'd rather have it refinished to its original color. We may not be able to have both fixed, but it sounds like since the springs will have to be retied in any event, 8-way would be best.


If you decide to have all that done this is how I prefer my customers to do it.

First bring it to my shop and I will strip it to the frame. This way I can save all the old fabric for a pattern and sometimes when the chair is gone fore 6 or 7 weeks the old fabric helps to remind me how it was put together. I may also be able to save some of the padding to reuse.

The refinisher picks it up at my shop. The refinisher will fix the frame before he puts a new finish on it. I have a working relationship with a refinisher that I've been working with for over 20 years. When the refinisher is done I pick it up at his shop.
There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full.
http://northfloridachair.com/index.html