Hiddy Hi all y’all out there in the good ‘ole Lawn Chair Nation!
I’m so very happy to report, that finally…East Texas is feeling more like fall! Hallelujah! In fact, we might receive a slight freeze this weekend it we don’t lookout. For those of you in other parts of our Great Nation that actually get to experience a true change of seasons, y’all might not understand my joy at all this but weather here in the Lone Star State is, shall we say…odd. In the fall, one day it’s 39 in the morning and that afternoon it’s 85. How do you dress for that? Then, in a few more days, it’s back to normal with the 70’s. But finally, the ladies here in the office got cool enough to have to run heat this morning so that’s a good sign we may be kicking summer to the curb. Now if we just had a bit of rain, everything would be everything!
As most of y’all know, we sell parts to rebuild the old chairs and gliders. Unfortunately, our stock is for the style of chairs and gliders that Ed Warmack, the Williams Brothers and Flanders Industries/Lloyd Flanders made and not the square, bench style such as JR Bunting is famous for. I love those old three seat gliders with the cool cutouts and boxy shape. I routinely get requests for parts for this glider style and I can offer a few details here which I hope will assist others in their rebuilding job.
One of the easier sources for the swing arms, which seem to need replacing on most of the old pieces when found “in the wild” is by searching on eBay. There a couple of folks that are hand fashioning pretty good looking reproduction swing arms. Search using “Vintage Metal Glider” or “Porch Glider” and you’ll run across them and possibly some other things you might need.
There is also a way cool web site for an outfit that rebuilds the old Bunting style gliders and chairs. Sometimes they have extra parts or can offer suggestions. Please visit our friends at www.retrovintagepatio.com or call them at 800-725-6896. For me, they know more about the Bunting gliders than anyone else on the inner-web and I’m sure they’ll be happy to answer your questions.
Some of the pieces in poor condition will have rusted areas needing repair. Fortunately, the gauge or thickness of the material for the period gliders was a little on the thick side. This means that new metal can be welded into place with the right approach. First, all the old paint needs to be removed. This can be done with a chemical stripper and the citrus based ones have worked well for me and they are pretty much environmentally friendly. However, you do tend to make a mess so prepare for that ahead of time. The other method requires sourcing a company that can media blast the paint off. Media blasting is sort of like sand blasting but it’s not as aggressive. There’s even a rather newer method that incorporates high pressure water along with a media that takes the paint off nicely. The folks that cater to classic car rebuilding generally will have these blast machines or can recommend someone.
Once all the paint is off then you’ll truly know the shape of your fortune. It could be the metal is fine and ready for primer or you might need to cut out some rust and weld in new panels. For this work, I would again seek out the help of the classic car shops. These folks know and understand lighter gauge metal fabrication and can help advise you on what can be done to get your treasured glider back to factory new.
I hope this rather short segment has helped a little in y’all’s quest towards your project. Fixing up old chairs and gliders is becoming more and more popular these days if I only go by the level of emails I get. It’s so cool that folks are becoming increasingly interested in restoring or just fixing their vintage pieces and not scrapping them! Most of y’all know, that’s my mantra!
Later y’all! Happy Halloween and don’t steal your kid’s candy…while they’re looking!