Question- I have had individuals ask about the mechanism used on a tilt top table so I did some checking in my archives and found a picture of a tilt top table that shows how they work.
The back ground on this particular table is a family experience as this table I made from a pattern of my wife's grandmother who received the table for a wedding present. At the time I made the pattern the table was roughly one hundred and thirty five years old. My challenge was to use that pattern to make a table for my wife. Which I did in 1976. So this table is not an antique at this time but it is getting closer every year.
The table is made up of parts that fit together and actually move if needed. The legs and the spindle are glued solid. The top of the spindle fits into the bird cage that is the area between the top and the spindle. There is a mortise cut through the spindle to allow a wedge to hold the top and the spindle together. The hinge on the bird cage is attached to the top cross supports under the table top. And the top. When all of the pieces and parts fit together you have a three legged table with a bird cage that can turn in a horizontal motion and a top that will tilt up and down in a vertical motion. When the top is hooked in the down position you are ready to use the table. When the top is tilted in the up position you can store the table along a wall thus saving space in the room. The top and bid cage will come off by removing the wedge making it easier the handle the table for moving.
I can only say that the engineering on a piece like this was very good even over one hundred and eighty years ago.
The table parts are solid native walnut, (the top is curly walnut), with a satin lacquer clear finish.
The more we investigate the old furniture the better we understand and can return an antique piece to life of many additional years and enjoyment of that piece.
Until next time I'm Ron Stookey