How To: Make a traditional trug

Make a traditional trug

The trugs are made from finished birch and lamium (sp)birch plywood. 1 inch wide and 4 millimeters thick plywood in three thickness. Laminate three pieces together to make a handle. Make a rim in the same way. It is made in two halves, put in a drying rack overnight and then trimmed and pinned together at the side with solid brass pins which won't rust. They are placed in a former where the boards are plced into the trug. The boards are 1 1/2 millimeter aircraft ply. The handle and rim are soaked in boiling water so the ends won't split when the copper tacks are put in. The boards are also soaked to make them pliable enough to bend. Take the handle and rim and put them into the making box. The handle goes in first. The rim slips in between. It is placed on two ledges to get the right depth. Pop a couple of feet into the box. Then we're ready to put the boards in. Take the wet board and position the boards in by eye and use copper tacks to position and fix the board securely onto the frame. The boards need to be trimmed on the end. The whole trug is sanded to make sure it feels good in the hand. A series of stains and colors can be put on the handle and the rim. Messages can be put on the trug to personalize it for a gift.

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We use Latvian or Russian Birch ply for the handles and rims (4mm) and Finnish Birch (1.5mm) for the boards. Both plys are weather and boil proof so will last a long time given a bit of TLC. We've weight tested our Trugs from Size 5 upwards with a 56lbs/25kgs weight so you can rest assured that they are robust. Come and see them made in our workshops in Magham Down, Herstmonceux, Sussex, England and you will receive a warm welcome.

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