Art Nouveau Coffee Table #5: "Grind & Sand and Grind & Sand"

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Blog entry by Dennis Zongker posted 04-05-2015 10:51 PM 3079 reads 2 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Carving with Grinders Part 5 of Art Nouveau Coffee Table series Part 6: Large Elliptical Cutting Jig »

Removing approximately 200 pounds of solid African Mahogany was pain staking. Setting up a plastic tent and wearing enough face and body gear to cure Ebola. lol When starting out it took four men to move the base and now two men can move this coffee table base.

One of the dumb things that I did was take off the guard to one of my grinders so that I could get into the concave section of the lower legs. Then I hit a snag and the grinder pulled me in and grounded up a couple of my fingers, man did that hurt. I’ll never do that again. They are starting to heal up nicely, and I’ll be back to playing my guitars in about another week or so.

This table base was a ton of work but man was it fun. Next I’ll be starting on the top with the marquetry scene of trees and a lake with reflection in the water. Thank you, LJ’s

-- Dennis Zongker

15 comments so far

View wooded's profile


371 posts in 3555 days

#1 posted 04-05-2015 10:59 PM

Well there you go again! ....Looks wonderful Dennis….;-j

-- Joe in Pueblo West, Colo.

View Bothus's profile


443 posts in 4459 days

#2 posted 04-05-2015 11:06 PM

Very impressive. I’m impressed with the concept and even more with the execution.
Thank you for sharing Dennis.

-- Jerry Boshear, Professional Kitchen Designer, amature woodworker.

View Grumpy's profile


26812 posts in 5134 days

#3 posted 04-05-2015 11:25 PM

Awesome Dennis. Look after those fingers mate.
Remember my old rule, never put your finger where you wouldn’t put your pecker. LOL.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View savannah505's profile


1882 posts in 4869 days

#4 posted 04-06-2015 12:10 AM

very nice Dennis, reminds me of some of my past projects.

-- Dan Wiggins

View sscartozzi's profile


74 posts in 3043 days

#5 posted 04-06-2015 12:35 AM

incredible work Dennis, from design to execution. just curious, how many hours involved in the shaping?

-- Steve, Malvern, PA

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 4591 days

#6 posted 04-06-2015 12:45 AM

That is without a doubt the most awesome table base I have seen. Your client will most certainly be awe struck.
Quite a nice journey Dennis…

I sculpt a lot of smaller pieces and create a huge amount of sawdust…so I can only imagine how much grinding and sanding dust you have made.

View Woodbridge's profile


3751 posts in 3701 days

#7 posted 04-06-2015 01:40 AM

Glad to hear you fingers are healing up. I have a few times used my grinder and Kutzall wheels to sculpt out chair seat w/o the guard. I will certainly be heeding your advice.

The shape you have created is so fluid and organic looking. Beautiful and inspiring work.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View dclark1943's profile


270 posts in 3470 days

#8 posted 04-06-2015 02:32 AM

Dennis, Sorry to hear that you nipped a couple fingers – - Grumpy gives some good advice, take care of your appendages. they don’t grow back ! It is looking awesome though, hope you were wearing ear plugs, looks like those grinders are screamers ! Looks like I’ll be coming through Omaha on the morning of Saturday the 18th, (April) however will firm up the date later this week. I’ll let you know, – - hope that whatever weekend works out for me will work for you as well. keep up the great work, see ya later

-- Dave, Kansas City

View Grumpy's profile


26812 posts in 5134 days

#9 posted 04-06-2015 02:54 AM

Dennis, how would one of those new twin blade power saws go on grinding & carving.
I understand there is no kick back with them because the blades spin in opposite directions.
I have one but have not used it for carving.
Would be interested in your thoughts.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View DocSavage45's profile


9070 posts in 4125 days

#10 posted 04-06-2015 04:32 AM

Dennis, I will second Greg! Sickens me about turning that negative space wood into sawdust.

It’s easy to get carless. I have a large bruse on my stomach to show for it.

Hands are more important than fat. LOL! Take care.

Great pictures.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View shipwright's profile


8760 posts in 4081 days

#11 posted 04-06-2015 05:03 AM

Wow Dennis, Bravo!
What a wonderful challenge this is for you and what a wonderful job you are doing.
You must feel very alive working on this. I know the marquetry will be just as spectacular.
Keep up the exciting work, keep living the challenge, and above all keep posting these updates.
We are all anxiously awaiting the next entry.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View mmh's profile


3697 posts in 5005 days

#12 posted 04-06-2015 05:04 AM

You make it looks so easy! Probably because you are 1) A master at your craft; 2) Having too much fun.

I’d like to know where one can get the wood shop slaves that help elevate this piece onto the 50 gallon barrels! I could use a few.

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View BCDesign's profile


541 posts in 2705 days

#13 posted 04-06-2015 05:20 AM

This is really cool,I love carving with my grinder!what a huge task that was but it was worth it!it looks great!!

-- "The secret of getting ahead is getting started" Mark Twain

View Roger's profile


21055 posts in 4087 days

#14 posted 04-06-2015 11:56 AM

A tremendous amount of work and sculpting. Wow! You are insanely talented Dennis!

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2859 posts in 4875 days

#15 posted 04-06-2015 11:11 PM

Grumpy, I never heard that one before, I will have to keep that one in mind! lol The twin blade cuts really smooth compared to the single one. But it still catches when going in certain directions so be care full not to catch your pecker! lol

Hi Dan, It’s always great hearing from you. This is your kind of style I knew you would like it.

sscartozzi, Thank you, I have about 370 hours into the whole table base so far. So about 120 hours into the grinding and sanding.

Greg, Thank you sir. yes it was a incredible amount of saw dust, about four full 55 gallon cans of dust.

Woodbridge, Thank you, the design is kind of crazy, but the customer wanted a tree look with a art nouveau style. And you can never be to cautious about safety, it always seams that way especially after a injury.

Hi Dave, its great to hear from you. I sure am glad it wasn’t my pecker or life as we know it would have cease to end that day. lol On the 18th I’m sorry to say Patti and I will be out of town. We would sure love to see you maybe next time?

DocSavage45, Thank you, Even fat can get hurt, lol but fingers as a woodworker is life support.

Paul, Thank you so very much, you are a big inspiration to me!!!

Meilie, Thank you sweetie, yes it is nice having the guys around in the shop to help on these larger projects.

Thank you wooden, Bothus, ashe, & Roger for your kind complements!

-- Dennis Zongker

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