Urban Salvage

The Drum


      AUGUST 2013

  • Timber Tables In Gym Floor Spotted Gum
  • New Stocks For August

Timber Tables In Gym Floor Spotted Gum

Tara Wilcox has been getting a workout in recent months on a Spotted Gum gymnasium floor from Urban Salvage. Wilcox crafts a recycled, industrial-look table from these extra heavy-duty 28mm floor boards - mounted on light-weight and functional wrought iron legs. I happened upon one of these tables at the local pub last weekend and experienced an odd moment of deja-vu. Gym floorboards with court-lines randomly re-configured deliver an appealing abstract composition - while the former use of the timbers remains evident. This design recalls the influential opus of Rosalie Gascoigne. Collages using road works warning signs or Tarax drink crates.

Tara Wilcox with Julian McCartney from
Glencross Woodworks - who shares a workshop space.

While Spotswood manager Andy Mineur is busy on the telephone - Wilcox is busy selecting the most interesting of this batch of reclaimed gym boards and leaving the shelves stocked with lengths that are bereft of court markings. In this endeavour she is aided and abetted by sympathetic Urban Salvage timberman, Tim Ayris. As long as she can pick the stripey boards, pay and make a quick getaway, she's got a line of product. It's hard to believe product management can be reduced to this level of subterfuge - but there you have it.

Works by Rosalie Gascoigne.

The gymnasium geometric and the vintage feel of recycled timber have inspired other parquetry table designs in this Easey Street, Collingwood atelier. But Wilcox imposes defined limits on the design range - limits which relate to how well a small workshop functions. I'm taken with the Tasmanian Oak parquetry table with the raked-edge inlays. There is something about a bevel or a repeated diagonal that again brings Gascoigne's work to mind. It seems full of similar possibilities - and there's a welcome tension in the fractured nature of the collaged whole. An appropriate design maxim, I'd reckon, from an ex-rock band drummer turned furniture maker. If it is truly a received design ethic, then it has been renewed, invigorated and given mainstream appeal in well-crafted tables that would definitely suit a home, an office, a cafe or a pub.



   For Gym Floor Tables and other designs, contact Tara at Redfox & Wilcox:
Email:      info@redfoxandwilcox.com.au
   Mobile:     0410 027 611
   Website:  www.redfoxandwilcox.com.au


Recycled Tallowwood Flooring
Salvaged From Brunswick Town Hall
83 x 25mm   Rate: $89.00/m2

'Two young fellas named Les and Mick
Damn good tradesmen by heck
They worked this joint from front to back
Buggered it up and got the sack'

This little timepiece - dated 24 November 1936 and lead-pencilled in a flowing cursive on the back of a floorboard
- was removed from the ground floor of the Brunswick Town Hall during recent refurbishment works.
We have kept it here at Urban Salvage as a memento.

The Tallowwood is a secret-nailed floorboard with no top-surface holes - and re-sanding might obliterate the scratchy, marked surface
of the salvaged board. Then again - it might not completely - and there's nothing wrong with retained surface texture
in a floorboard. To many punters - it's difficult to achieve when you attempt precisely that look.

All up - 150m2 salvaged in good condition.


Recycled / Remilled Tallowwood
65 x 22mm   Rate: $99.00/m2   120m2

Unfortunately, the builder had commenced lifting part of the floor before we arrived - very badly - and inflicted minor damage
to the bottom groove edge of many hundreds of metres.

These boards have been re-profiled to a wonderful decking board with the damaged edge removed.

You can lay this deck with milled face up - or with original face upwards for an industrial or salvaged timber look.


New Stocks For August

Birds-eye Stringybark
140 x 32mm; 180 x 32mm; 240 x 32mm


Birds-eye Stringybark cabinet by Nick Coyle of The Timber Trip.


No one really knows how true birds-eye figure in exotic timbers such as sugar maple develops
- but in some Australian eucalypts - a similar figure develops due to the presence
of dormant buds in the outer cambium layers of the main trunk. 

These epicormic buds are activated after bushfires and form new green shoots to replace the dead branches.

The timber in dressed seasoned board reveals small eddies of brown buds and
a quilting or an arabesque in the grain - an uncommon and beguiling texture.

Come and inspect sometime soon. New stocks in 20mm thickness of board expected soon.


Squash-Court Mountain Ash Flooring
60 x 30mm   Rate: $52.00/m2   120m2

A secret-nail profiled board with red court lines retained.

Randomly re-laid, they form patterns that have in the past attracted a few urban hipsters to our
Spotswood showroom seeking this individual look and industrial vibe.

I guess they will keep coming now.


Recycled Blackbutt
85 x 42mm   Rate: $22.00/m

Not just Blackbutt but the Blackbutt of the curly fibrous grain, deep tawny-pink variety.

Perennially popular for edge-laminating into bench and table tops.

Stocks of 130 x 42mm and 100 x 42mm expected in stock soon.


Recycled Spotted Gum
180 x 30mm   Rate: $39.00/m

It is not a select grade of timber - this board that has been re-sized from bridge bearers
sourced from a rail bridge in Kingaroy, Qld.

However, boltholes and the accompanying black carbon staining around them, make for an
interesting industrial look if you buy these boards for furniture.

Ideal for plank tables, planter boxes and bench seats in outdoor areas.


Recycled Brushbox
180 x 30mm   Rate: $29.00/m

Like the Spotted Gum, these metre rates for seasoned recycled timber won't hit the
pocket nerve very much in these cautious times.

There are not as many boltholes in the box - but lots of visual interest in the swirling grain.


KD Tallowwood
42 x 19mm   Screening Battens   Rate: $4.50/m

New stocks of screening batten have arrived after a brief stock shortage in this size.

Tallowwood is a durable species for outdoors and we can supply set-length orders in 1.5, 1.8, 2.1 and 3.0m lengths.