We score the underside of our chest of drawers and table tops to prevent damage caused by expansion and contraction due to changes. This is a feature that, to our knowledge, has not been in production work for over 80 years. One of the many reasons antiques will last much longer than most things made today.
For the strength and beauty required of Mission Furniture, we use many square dowels in round holes. This aesthetically pleasing feature adds strength because a square dowel crushes down to fit into a round hole and the natural expansion of the wood, as it tries to restore its shape, creates a tighter fit. However, for face to face applications, round dowels are used.
All of the Mortises in our Mission Furniture line are cross-doweled to create a mechanical lock that is nearly impossible to break.
Our Mission Line is made authentic by using the historically preferred and aesthetically appealing Quartersawn Oak throughout most of the pieces. This Oak is cut in such a way as to showcase the beautiful flecks in the Oak. It is (and was) also used because it is a more dimensionally stable cut than any other cut of an Oak tree. We use 5/4 Quartersawn Oak for our tops, rift and quarter for our sides, and flat sawn is used in place where you are going to see the exposed quartersawn edge.
All of the drawers on this line are dovetailed on all four corners using an English dovetail. We also use wood on wood drawer slides. We use Baltic Birch plywood for our drawers in the interest of strength. Solid wood can bow, check, crack or warp. Plywood will alleviate all of these problems, making it the best material for drawers.
Our Mission Line of furniture is also constructed primarily of solid lumber, as opposed to particle board, veneer, or any other such product.
Mortise and Tenon Joinery:
We use mortise and tenon joinery throughout our Mission furniture. This method is also preferred for its strength. However, there are a few places within the style where mortise and tenon was not used then, and should not be used now. For example dowels are often used, in a similar joinery method.
To maintain that authentic look our door and drawer pulls are handmade. These handmade pulls are some of the only metal to be found in this line. There are also screws in elongated slots used to hold the tops of items like the chest of drawers down, and to allow for expansion so that they can shift without damaging or breaking the tops.
We mix the color for the Mission line in our shop, and apply 3 coats of finish and then a black wax for a uniquely rich appearance.