Oversize Knife and Fork

Oversize knife and fork

Oversize Jean Nouvel knife and fork

A recent project called for an oversize Jean Nouvel designer knife and fork prop for a display. The two metre long knife and fork props were required to hang vertically on a wall.

Using a reference photo scaled drawings were made from which the props were constructed from timber.

The knife was a simple matter to make but the fork was challenging as it had a curved profile.

This was solved by making a mould of the shape of the fork and laminating several layers of thin plywood together and clamping them in the mould. When the glue had dried the formed ply laminate was ready for shaping.

A metallic reflective finish was required and this was achieved by sealing and sanding the surface until a perfectly smooth surface was obtained. This was then sprayed with a brilliant chrome enamel and left to dry.

Below are some of the stages in construction of the oversize prop fork.

Fork timber mould

1) Overview of the completed timber mould for the fork. Two plywood boxes interlocked with the profile of the fork end.

End of the fork mould

2) View of the end of the fork mould boxes which, when filled with sand, minimised any distortion in the shape of the mould when clamped.

Applying glue to ply

3) Applying glue to both sides of the ply laminate sheets before laying them in the mould. Six sheets of 3mm ply were used.

Clamping the ply laminate

4) Clamping the ply laminates into the the fork mould created the desired profile. It was left overnight to dry.

Completed laminated fork shape

5) The ply laminate after its removal from the mould. The fork design was simply drawn on this and cut out and shaped as required.

Shaped timber with undercoat

6) The first undercoat is applied to seal the timber and prepare it for filling and sanding. The aim is get get an optically smooth surface before the final coat of paint is applied.