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Turning the (Extendable) Tables: How the Furniture Doctor Can Make Your Table Bigger, Stronger & More Comfortable

Having a table that can open to seat many people is a tremendous benefit, especially for the upcoming holidays of Purim and Pesach. Among the many services they offer, the Furniture Doctor helps families all over the country host as many people as they like with their heavy-duty table slides. The slides are imported in various lengths from a company in North Carolina that builds them for high-end US companies. Thanks to the table slides, customers can decide how long their table will be when it opens, and how many people they will be able to seat. 

The Furniture Doctor originally began importing table extension mechanisms to repair broken tables. In so doing, however, the company discovered that the new mechanisms had some unexpected benefits. 

“We first started importing heavy duty table mechanisms to help people whose table extension mechanisms broke,” says David Shafner, the Furniture Doctor. “But then we found out that after we put them in, the table was able to extend beyond its original size. Just adding the new mechanism made the table able to extend further.” 

Several types of extendable tables exist on the market. The typical Israeli or European model features stationary legs and a table top that either slides to one side or opens in the center. The American models, by contrast, normally divide the table into two halves with a pair of legs on either end. To open the table, you pull apart the ends and place additional leaves in the center. In the latter case, the table will extend as far as the mechanism allows—so the larger the mechanism, the longer you can extend the table. That’s how the Furniture Doctor’s table slides work. If you have a European or Israeli style table, they can (usually) adapt your table to extend like an American table. This has the additional benefit of eliminating two problems inherent to extending tables that only the top moves and the legs stay stationary: the stationary legs get in the way and make it difficult to seat everyone comfortably; and the relative fragility of the table top when fully extended. The result is a table that is not only longer, but stronger and more comfortable to use. 

Generally speaking, you need an additional 50 cm of space around a table for each guest you wish to seat comfortably. Therefore, adding a 50-cm leaf provides space for two additional guests—one on each side. If you have a table that seats six, for example, and you want it to seat eight, you’ll need to add one leaf to your table. With the Furniture Doctor’s table slides, you can add as many leaves as you want. 

Where does one get additional leaves? Well, you could custom-order leaves that exactly match your table top from a carpenter, and David Shafner says he has customers who have done that. “But 99% of our customers prefer our economical option: additional leaves made of a very strong high-density plywood  Usually when you’re extending a table, you’re going to cover it with a tablecloth anyway, so nobody will notice the difference in the table top pattern.” 

The Furniture Doctor offers several different lengths: small, medium, large, and extra-large. (Customers are advised to get their orders in sooner rather than later, to be sure that the slides they need are in stock.) For tables of four meters or more, they add a leg in the center to support the table and make it stronger. It  can be removed if desired, and is colored to match the table. The leg is attached to the mechanism and always stays in the middle, whether the table is open or closed. 

The mechanism itself is made from heavy duty steel, and it actually makes the table stronger, especially when the center leg is attached to the mechanism. 

How strong? “We got a call from Har Nof after one Purim,” David Shafner chuckles, “that they needed a table fixed because the original mechanism broke after some yeshiva bachurim were dancing on the table. We installed a new mechanism with a center leg, so if any bachurim dance on it again, it’ll hold this time!”  

The Furniture Doctor has installed hundreds of steel table slides to enlarge tables in almost every city in Israel. Feel free to contact him to ask which of your neighbors have done it so you can see for yourself how satisfied they are with his work. 

About the Furniture Doctor

The Furniture Doctor restores, repairs and refurbishes furniture all across Israel.  

For more information and to find out more about their lifetime warranty, contact David Shafner at 02-999-2418 or at furndoc@gmail.com

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