Since a picture speaks a thousand words in any language, and a “handmade” description doesn’t tell the whole story, the following detail the making of a darjeeling dining table—completely by hand.
The Indian Railways, or IR, is one of the largest networks in the world. Its nearly 1.6 million employees transport 20 million passengers over almost 40,000 miles of tracks through nearly 7,000 stations—everyday.
Railroad ties, or “sleepers”, are approximately 40-50 years old and are being replaced with newer concrete versions.
To make a tabletop, reclaimed ties are planed down to the inner core and joined together in a puzzle fashion. Exposed damage and loose wood is marked, chiseled out, and replaced with smaller pieces.
Tabletops are then re-sanded and the process repeated where gaps appear. Fine gaps are filled with a mixture of blackened glue and sawdust.
Steel T-bar and square tubes are welded together to create the leg assembly and tabletop support. The final finishing stages include grinding the welding for a smoother finish.