Sedan Chair Specialist

Sedan Chair poles repaired using Bencon 20 Epoxy Resin

Stephen Loft-Simpson is a European Sedan Chair Specialist based in Bristol. He has provided consultancy and loaned a sedan chair for the BBC series “How we Built Britain” presented by David Dimbleby and also appeared with Tony Robinson as part of Channel 4’s first series “Worst Jobs in History”. Stephen used our products for a repair on the original poles of one of his historic sedan chairs and although successful sought further advice, which we were very pleased to give:

The Sedan Chair SpecialistThe Sedan Chair SpecialistDear Tony,

Sorry it has been such a long time replying.

I have now tested the original poles (like on my Business Card) with a teenager inside and they seem to carry the weight of a person (so no fibreglass sticks required).

When spraying the holes the fluid did not seem to go in very far or deep. So what's required is probably some of your BENCON 20 Epoxy Clear? Or BENCON 22 Epoxy Wood. Probably the minimum amount as it's mainly the oval ends that need filling rather than cutting short.

Stephen Loft-Simpson
Sedan Chair Specialist

Our technical advice to the Sedan Chair Specialist was as follows:

You mention spraying the holes, that wouldn't get any consolidant very far into timber.

Our methods of consolidation are either to "bag" an object, vacuum the whole and introduce Bencon; this is followed by removal from the bag and washing-off the excess resin and then to gel for ca. 8 hours and follow-up with an overnight post cure of ca. 25-30°C: this way makes quite sure of deep resin penetration and was perfected for the work we carried out on the House of Lords carvings - 500 in number.

For you I would suggest that Bencon 20 is plenty good enough for your work and that the best way to ensure good penetration in frassy timber is to use an hypodermic syringe and Luer lock needle, (we have them in stock), and should you choose to take this route I'll talk you through the procedure prior to your work.

Bencon 22, an epoxy putty sometimes referred to as plastic wood, is ideal for making up lost profiles before re-gilding. Please let me know whether you have any further queries.

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