Tuesday, July 6, 2010

part one: table top

if you read carefully, you would have read that i had a coffee table to do and that i wanted to do it before may. what i really meant was before august. so here we are.

this table is a commission for some friends of ours who recently got married. the design is based on a jens risom table from 1959.

i've tweaked the design a bit, but i've also kept the principal elements of it. one thing that really drew me to this table is the elegant base with the floating top. another detail that we (claire and i) really liked was the rap-around pencil roll.

i finished the top yesterday, so i thought that i would give a little photo tour of it.

here are the two planks that will make up the table. the one in the foreground has produced the parts for the base; and the other, the top. the one is a little darker then the other, a fact that i'll accentuate with the finish.

the old fashioned way, or i don't have any other way to do it.

i split the portion of the one plank for the top on an angle to get at a more rift sawn face. there is some really nice color in this piece.

sawing the veneers on my old beast of a saw. things got a little hot on the top wheel. live and learn.

i veneered this using some torsion boxes and clamps and cauls. it went pretty well.

the top received some applied edges with the pencil roll shaped into them. these and the top received a groove to align the parts come glue up.

my beloved mouse from mr. don. a most handy tool indeed. here it was used to mark where the top and the applied edge meet.

the initial profile was wasted out on the router table. after this, there was alot of hand work to bring the shape into existence.

some of the tools used to carve the inside corner of the pencil roll. i debated whether or not a miter in the corner would be advantageous in this situation, but i decided against it.

after the shape was in the applied edges, it was off to finishing. i wanted to keep the top light, so i went with shellac and wax. i've got about 15 coats of shellac, and i'm still waxing. the table will come with it's own set of custom coasters.

the top has a series of slip matches on both sides of center and then a random match down the middle. the random match was by far the nicest option. it created a sort of an eye in the center of the table and some nice tan lines running almost parallel along the length of the table.


Nicholas Nelson said...

Wow sweet work thus far! That's going to be a frickin classy table. the profile of the outside perimeter of the pencil roll is gorgeous!
I want to touch it all over?
How many of us are currently working with Walnut heh?

Shannon said...

Its beautiful!! I love the pencil roll and the color of the wood. So happy to see the evolution of the piece. Can't wait.

mckenzie said...

great tutorial, and piece. Love that corner shot. Were did you source the walnut (8/4?) ?

i am holding you to your Aug deadline! keep it coming.


Nick Brygidyr said...

oh mah gawww!! dude seriously out standing so far!

im working with walnut right now, i LOVE it...the thing i hate are the smaller planks and the color sometimes doesn't match up. boo!

jbreau said...

yeah, walnut is pretty nice. works well, looks good. it's the flavor of the month too.

i got the walnut in halifax at east coast specialty hardwoods. it was 16/4 and about 7" wide, 7' long. the piece for the base was from the same place, 16/4 as well, a little wider and a little shorter.

the august deadline should be fine. it'll have to be.

the base could be very straight forward, but i'm going to complicate things a little with some tapers and off 90 joints. you know, just for fun.

Ian Crosby said...

I like you table top a lot. Don will be so proud to see the mouse had a roll to play. Beautiful!

The Hartley's 3 said...

Love the top profile and I think that going to be a wonderful table.

The random match is interesting I need to do some playing around with them to see how they work.

CustomMade.com said...

This looks wonderful so far! Let me know if you'd like to guest author a publication for us some time!

-Chris from CustomMade

Rane said...

Inspiring piece. Keep up the posts, I really enjoy seeing something like that take shape