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Thread: Doors of curly wood

  1. #1
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    Doors of curly wood

    I'm at home watching an episode of the Twilight Zone. The episode is irrelevant. What is relevant is that the set of an office uses doors that obviously are made of curly wood. They are slab doors so I'm assuming they use veneer. But it seems that no matter what show I'm watching the doors are curly wood. Sine they are black and white I cannot tell if they are oak, walnut or what. Twilight zone, Dick Van Dyke, Perry Mason. Any 1950's or 60's show. And the curly seems to be used almost exclusively. Does anyone have any information on this? What kind of wood is it? and why do they use curly wood or veneer?

    Very Curious.
    work with wood - not against it

  2. #2
    “We will control the vertical, we will control the horizontal “.
    I do remember hearing that different TV shows would often be filmed on the same sets. Perhaps the pattern was a good “non strober”.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mel Fulks View Post
    I do remember hearing that different TV shows would often be filmed on the same sets. Perhaps the pattern was a good “non strober”.
    I know sets were used for multiple shows. I was watching an episode of Mannix and lo and behold they were on the set of the Brady Bunch for one scene. But the prevalence of curly doors seemed so great one would think that this was the only wood grain available. Also, what is strobing? Does that have something to do with the frames per second?
    work with wood - not against it

  4. #4
    I’ve forgotten what causes it ,but it was just phantom continuous distortion pattern.

  5. #5
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    Could also have been cheap, rotary cut veneer goods that in some cases, can appear to be "curly" from a distance.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    Could also have been cheap, rotary cut veneer goods that in some cases, can appear to be "curly" from a distance.
    I know curly and rotary. This is not rotary.
    work with wood - not against it

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Barney Sr View Post
    I know sets were used for multiple shows. I was watching an episode of Mannix and lo and behold they were on the set of the Brady Bunch for one scene. But the prevalence of curly doors seemed so great one would think that this was the only wood grain available. Also, what is strobing? Does that have something to do with the frames per second?

    Moiré?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moiré_pattern
    Last edited by Wes Grass; 06-19-2021 at 2:11 PM. Reason: Looked up ASCII code 130 for the é

  8. #8
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    There are three lumber yards near me that have an abundance of figured wood. I suggest you look around.

  9. #9
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    With all the set artists for tv and movies, there is always a chance that the curly figure is faux painting.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowell holmes View Post
    There are three lumber yards near me that have an abundance of figured wood. I suggest you look around.
    Check out the original post more closely, Lowell...this is about what was observed when watching older TV shows. It's an interesting observation.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  11. #11
    without looking agree with Richard. Old guys brother worked in sets for TV shows at the CBC, said its amazing what they do and how good it looks on TV.

  12. #12
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    The key is that the OP was talking about older TV shows. Television back then was broadcast in NTSC standards (which stood for National Television Standards Committee but people in the video business claimed meant Never Twice Same Color) . This was an interlaced signal where first the odd lines were transmitted, then the even lines, constantly alternating. So the cathode gun in your picture tube (you young 'uns can look that up) would paint the odd lines on your screen and then the even lines. To simplify, this meant that if you had a repeating pattern, think rift sawn grain, it would often cause a strobe effect with that section of the picture. Using a randomized grain patern, like burl or curly grain, would minimize that effect.

    At least that's my guess and I'm sticking to it.

    Cliff (former video producer, many years ago)
    Mudhead: "Doesn't Louise count?" Porgy: "Only to 10, Mudhead."

  13. #13
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    I attended Paul Sellers classes at and made doors and chairs. I just naturally responded.
    However, if you have the knowledge, skill, It is satisfying.

    I have made rocking chairs for friends and children. I just naturally jumped to conclusions.

    If you have the curiosity, make a chair. You will take your woodworking to another level.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cliff Polubinsky View Post
    The key is that the OP was talking about older TV shows. Television back then was broadcast in NTSC standards (which stood for National Television Standards Committee but people in the video business claimed meant Never Twice Same Color) . This was an interlaced signal where first the odd lines were transmitted, then the even lines, constantly alternating. So the cathode gun in your picture tube (you young 'uns can look that up) would paint the odd lines on your screen and then the even lines. To simplify, this meant that if you had a repeating pattern, think rift sawn grain, it would often cause a strobe effect with that section of the picture. Using a randomized grain patern, like burl or curly grain, would minimize that effect.

    At least that's my guess and I'm sticking to it.

    Cliff (former video producer, many years ago)
    Thank you for your explanation. This makes much sense. I have been wondering about this for nearly all of my adult life. I can die happy now. lol
    work with wood - not against it

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