Trestle Table

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Blog series by HappyHowie updated 12-09-2016 05:26 AM 48 parts 63672 reads 54 comments total

Part 1: Milling 6/4 Rough Sawn Lumber Parts

08-27-2016 11:38 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

After several days of study and analysis, I decided I would make a trestle table for my granddaughter Torrence. It boiled down between this relatively small trestle table or a shaker style writing desk with two drawers under the table top. Each would be approximately the same size of about 60 inches long and 30 inches wide. Frankly, the decision really came down to my desire to make a beautiful trestle table; one with great curves and shapes. Actually this trestle table’s top will...

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Part 2: Finished Milling my Lumber Today

09-01-2016 02:46 AM by HappyHowie | 5 comments »

Today I continued working on my 4/4 lumber parts by running the boards through my 15 inch thickness planer. I selected the boards I will use for the top. By selecting them now I made sure they were milled to the same thickness through my planer. One board needed further planing that the other four so they ended up becoming 13/16th inches thick instead of 7/8 thick. I wanted the top as thick as I could get from my 4/4 rough sawn timber. I am happy with what i got. A board I had in my lu...

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Part 3: Milled and Cut Leg Assembly Parts to Final Dimensions

09-02-2016 04:15 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today I took the 6/4 lumber parts that I had initially milled to rough dimensions so I could finish the milling process by cutting them to final lengths and widths. I left approximately a 1/16” in their widths from the table saw cuts so I could use my bench planes to remove the blade burns and saw marks. I also smoothly removed the surface’s planer marks from all flat surfaces. For the two batten parts that call for 5/8” thick timber I chose to resaw the 1 inch thick boa...

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Part 4: Mechanic Duties

09-02-2016 07:33 PM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

If a woodworker is going to have electrical and mechanical equipment in his shop he should also acquire the skills to setup and repair those machines, or keep a mechanic handy. They won’t be cheap unless they are sons or brothers. I have both who are very skilled. I have tried to have them teach me what I need to know. If they have done tasks like wire in a panel or box then I attempt to copy their work. I heard my planer yesterday begin to make a loud racket. This morning I found t...

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Part 5: Cambered Cauls

09-04-2016 01:55 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

In order to make sure the table top I will be gluing will be flat and so I can keep the thickness I have milled to separate board, I am making cambered cauls for clamping. I want the boards to retain their milled thickness of 13/16 inches so I can cut curved edges to the table top. I read somewhere during my research that softwood lumber is okay for clamping cauls. I bought three 2 by 12 by 8 feet redwood planks today at Lowes. I selected the planks that where very straight. Also most ...

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Part 6: Complete Cambered Cauls

09-04-2016 10:29 PM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

After using my planer yesterday to cut the cambered ends, I drilled holes two inches in from the ends of each caul. I selected a 3/8” drill bit in order to easily fit the 5/16 diameter bolts I purchased yesterday. Besides laying the bolt on my bench and testing the thickness of a 5/16” and a 3/8” drill bit along side the bolt, I also drilled a test hole in a scrap board. I selected my 3/8 inch drill bit for my cambered cauls. After marking a line two inches in from ...

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Part 7: Mortise Plunge Router JIGs

09-05-2016 05:31 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Since I am following a Gary Rogowski trestle table plan for its dimensions, I will follow or use his method for routing mortises in the trestle legs. He uses a simple jig for plunging mortises with his router. I will make these jigs today. So I could either make the trestle leg assemblies or prepare and glue my table top. I don’t know yet what I will build beyond the jigs. I will see how it goes. I may need to purchase a special sized router bit. If so, then I will be making a tri...

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Part 8: Glue-up Trestle Table Top

09-11-2016 01:15 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I performed a full dry glue-up test for this table top. This test included the clamping cauls I made. It became obvious that a 7 or 7 1/2 length bolt would have been ideal, or use of more washer. Instead I broke out my tap and die set to add more 5/16”-18 threads to each bolt. Once the bolts were ready I did a full dry fit. I trimmed the length of the two long boards on my table saw. I jointed the edges of each board so I would get dead-on flat panles; I alternate the su...

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Part 9: Mortise JIGs

09-14-2016 03:55 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

This will be my first time to use guide bushings to plunge route mortises. My mortises will be 3/8” wide. The guide bushing I will be using is a 3/4 inch diameter. There will be two mortises made in the trestle feet and one motise into the underside of the cap.

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Part 10: Tested Plunge Router JIG

09-16-2016 03:39 AM by HappyHowie | 4 comments »

I finally tested the plunge router mortising JIGs I made yesterday. I will need much more experience in using the router to make mortises. I used my digital caliper to measure the depths I was getting. For some reason the depth settings was not reliable, as yet. Went I route my mortises in the trestle table’s leg assemblies I will check the depths I have cut with the calipers. I am still not decided whether I will square the routed mortises or round the tenons.

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Part 11: Next Steps: Cut Tenons Using Twin Blade Joinery Method

09-17-2016 09:33 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I began work in my shop this morning by squaring up the corners or ends of these router bit made mortises. As you can see I have an Irwin Marples 3/8” or 10 mm hand chisel as well as a Robert Sorby mortising chisel in the same size 3/8” or 10 mm. For this blog entry I am writing what I plan to do next instead of writing briefly what I did in my shop. Maybe this way I will be more thorough and clear of what my steps will be. I subscribe to Woodcraft Magazine. I lov...

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Part 12: Next Steps: Cut Tenons Using Twin Blade Joinery Method

09-17-2016 09:37 PM by HappyHowie | 3 comments »

I began work in my shop this morning by squaring up the corners or ends of these router bit made mortises. As you can see I have an Irwin Marples 3/8” or 10 mm hand chisel as well as a Robert Sorby mortising chisel in the same size 3/8” or 10 mm. For this blog entry I am writing what I plan to do next instead of writing briefly what I did in my shop. Maybe this way I will be more thorough and clear of what my steps will be. I subscribe to Woodcraft Magazine. I lov...

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Part 13: Cutting Tenons with Spacer Blocks

09-22-2016 07:22 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I have not received a reply from my three questions sent to Saw Stop’s support. I have concluded that they really do not have a setup where I can use multiple blades as in the twin blade joinery article I was using on my other table saw. Based on this assumptions that Saw Stop can and only will have running solutions that pass their computer checks with their two braking systems, I have moved forward with a spacer block solution for cutting tenons on my Saw Stop table saw. I repl...

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Part 14: Scrap Test of Mortise and Tenon Joint

09-22-2016 02:14 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

My 3/8 inch spacer block test with scrap pieces has worked perfectly .

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Part 15: Flatten Table Top

09-29-2016 03:17 AM by HappyHowie | 3 comments »

It has been about a week since I glued my cherry hardwood table top together. As you might remember if you have followed my blog, I also make clamping cauls that I used during the top glue up. Even though I used these cambered cauls I still had some ridges at the jointed edges. I intended to use only my #6 bench plane and my #4 smoother to flatten both sides of my table top. I began that process and quickly wished that I owned a low angle jack plane. I was tempted. What I did do was to ...

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Part 16: More JIGs Made for Building Trestle Table

10-03-2016 03:19 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

This weekend I made a couple more jigs so I can build this Trestle Table. I followed instructions from Gary Rogowski, the author of this Trestle Table plan I am following. One of these jigs is another mortising jig that I will use my plunge router with a guide bushing. This mortising jig will be used to cut the through mortise in the leg assembling in which the stretcher will fit. The jig is a simple L fence of 1 1/2 inch thick block that is milled square with a 1/4 inch thick piece of ...

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Part 17: Mortises and Tenons

10-19-2016 03:38 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I returned to this Trestle Table project today. Actually, I have been doing some items with this project like making a jig or two. The wedge to hold the leg assemblies required a small jig. I also needed to make some templates from the printed plans I got from Fine Woodworking Magazine or Taunton Press. The feet for this table has a curve as well as the cap part at the top of the leg assembly. I made templates for these curves from some 1/4 inch thick MDF. I had cut the mortises ...

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Part 18: Through Mortises in Leg

10-20-2016 12:35 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today I trimmed the tenon shoulders on my table saw. I am glad I own an Incra 3000 HD miter gauge. I thought I had completed all of the shoulder trims, but while plunge routing the through mortises I discovered I had missed one of these shoulders. I had taken the Incra miter gauge off my Saw Stop. No problem, though. Since I have extended the fence to cover the length of the legs, all of my settings to trim these shoulders were still there. All I had to do is remount the Incra miter...

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Part 19: Multi-use RIP Fence JIG

10-20-2016 12:45 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Although I referenced Boy Van Dyke’s Fine Woodworking Magazine article about his multi-use RIP fence jig in a prior blog post, I thought I should include more photos showing the melamine fence that I bolt to the RIP fence jig in order to cut my tenons on my Saw Stop table saw. I made two versions of this melamine fence; one is the height specified in the magazine’s article. The other fence is two inches taller than the magazine’s article. I also implemented Bob’...

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Part 20: More Work on Leg Assemblies

10-24-2016 05:40 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I spent this evening working to have the tenons fit into their respective mortises; in the foot and the cap parts. I am so glad I took that Woodcraft sharpening class. Having wicked sharp blades and hand chisels mae all the difference now. I trimmed the ends of the tenons at my bandsaw. The double tenons fit into the foot; whereas the CAP mortise is a single wide. To refine the tenons i fixed the leg part in my workbench’s vise and used my very sharp hand chisels. I h...

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Part 21: Mortise Work for fitting Tenons

10-25-2016 04:58 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

I was not able to work long today in my shop. However, I did do some chisel work with the double mortises in the feet of this trestle table. I was able to close the gap except for about a 1/16 inch. I suspect that I did not get the depth I though I had set for the router plunge mortising work I did. Tomorrow I will trim the length of my tenons. I will trim a 1/16 of an inch and see how that fits before taking anymore from the tenons.

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Part 22: Fixed My Fit by Deepening My Mortises

10-26-2016 12:30 AM by HappyHowie | 1 comment »

I really like that my work is reviewed by other woodworkers through the blog entries I make on my projects. Today was a good example of how someone helped me. My leg tenons were not fitting deep enough into the foot and cap mortises. I commented that I was going to trim the length of my tenons in order to have them sit better. Before I entered my shop I read a comment that was posted today in my blog. Jack cautioned me about cutting my tenons shorter. I appreciate that comment. It le...

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Part 23: Next Step: Shape my Leg Parts, Then Glue-up

10-27-2016 03:48 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

With the fit of my leg’s mortises and tenons, it is time to shape the leg parts. Today I will use my shape templates for the Cap and Feet to draw a pencil line. Then I will cut those shapes on my bandsaw. For the legs itself, I will cut its taper on my table saw. I just am not comfortable in getting straight cuts on my bandsaw without blade drift. First, I will check if my leg taper jig will work for cutting the taper on these trestle table legs. If not, I will make a taper jig sp...

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Part 24: Cut Curves and Planed the Mill Marks

10-28-2016 02:58 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today I cut the curved leg parts at my bandsaw. With my Wood River low angle block plane I removed the saw marks. The burn marks were done with my 1/4” bandsaw blade. I replaced it after cutting my first leg part; a foot. I replaced that blade with a 1/2” Wood Slicer bandsaw blade for my 17” Grizzly G0513ANV bandsaw. I was pleased to learn that I could use my leg taper jig for tapering the legs for this trestle table. I placed blue painter’...

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Part 25: Leg Assemblies

10-29-2016 02:05 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today was an enjoyable day in my shop using my bench planes and spokeshaves. For the flat surfaces I used my Wood River #4 smoothing plane to flatten and prepare them for assembly and glue up. I used my newly made adjustable bench dogs built from a Woodsmith plan to pinch down the parts so I could plane their surfaces. With my leg parts pinched between my Veritas panel clamp and the newly made Woodsmith adjustable bench dogs I smooth planed all the flat surfaces. The adjustable bench ...

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Part 26: Cut Through Tenons on Stretcher

10-30-2016 02:15 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I have been very pleased with the leg assemblies I glued together yesterday plus this test cut of the through tenons I will be cutting soon on the trestle table’s stretcher. The through tenons are 3/4 inches thick and just over 3 inches long. To cut these tenons I use a 3/4 inch tenon spacer on my table saw’s multi-use RIP fence jig. The spacer is 3/4 thick plus the kerf’s width of my Freud RIP blade. The test cut tenon fitted right off from the cuts made on my tabl...

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Part 27: Fitted Through Tenons into Leg Mortises

10-30-2016 08:43 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

This morning I am fitting the stretcher’s long tenons into the leg’s through mortise. A bit more hand chisel work and I will have it. After both through tenons fit well, then I will cut a through mortise angled at 8 degrees. That mortise will be through the tenon’s top and drilled or cut all the way to the bottom of the tenon. However, a part of the mortises’ top will be hidden into the leg and more of it hidden at the tenon’s bottom. The wedge’s...

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Part 28: Angled Mortise Cut in Thru Tenon

10-31-2016 03:25 AM by HappyHowie | 3 comments »

Today I setup my 8 degree sled up on my drill press so I could drill small 1/4 inch holes in order to make the mortises in which the wedges will hold the legs tightly together. I clamped the stretcher to the sled and then aligned the mortise hole under the drill bit. Then I clamped everything down tightly. The mortise will be made where the XXXs mark the spot. You can notice the 8 degree angle marked on the sides of the tenon for the mortise. Since my drill bit was not very long I had ...

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Part 29: Through Tenon Mortises Cleared for Wedges

11-01-2016 01:24 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I spent a lot of time today working with my hand chisels to clean the drilled holes I made yesterday. These are the through mortises for the wedges that will hold the legs together. They give the trestle table its strength. I did take my time to clean these mortises so they would let the wedges through but would not have a sloppy fit. I even used my magnifying glass to see the mortises and the use of my hand chisels clearly. I was glad I had these Rockler purchased lighted magnifyi...

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Part 30: Through Tenons & Table Top Layout

11-02-2016 01:56 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I used a 2 inch diameter circle to round the corners of these through tenons that will contain the wedges for this trestle table My plans for this top will be to pattern it after trestle table designed and built by Daniel Chaffin. He wrote a Fine Woodworking article published in the September/ October 2013 issue. From the image in the magazine article and attached here, you can see the light reflected from the wonderful beveled side…

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Part 31: Whoa, Let's Be Safe With These Bevel Cuts

11-03-2016 01:28 AM by HappyHowie | 4 comments »

I was preparing to cut the 30 degree bevel on the table top’s ends and the 45 degree bevels on the side on my table saw by using my tall rip fence jig. Then I realized that holding the 60 inch length table top on its end was silly and dangerous. It would be very tipsy; hard to hold steady. Instead I will build a circular cutting jig for my Rigid circular saw. This meant a trip to my local large box store. After looking at the material options I decided to purchase a 4 ft by 8 ...

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Part 32: Table Top's Bevels Cut with Circular Saw Cutting Jig

11-03-2016 11:28 PM by HappyHowie | 4 comments »

Today I completed making the circular saw cutting jigs. I have one jig that is 60 inches long for cutting the 45 degree bevel of the sides of the table top. The other jig is 36 inches long for cutting the 30 degree bevel on the ends of the table top. After fixing the fence to the top of the jigs with screws, I then cut the bevels with my Rigid circular saw. Once I had the jig trimmed to the saw blade with that angle, I was able to lay the jig on the top side of the table top and alig...

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Part 33: Hand Planed Table Top's Side Bevels

11-05-2016 03:47 AM by HappyHowie | 1 comment »

Yesterday I cut bevels on my trestle table top panel with circular saw jigs. The ends I cut at 30 degrees of bevel. the sides I had cut at 45 degrees. Today I have been using my #6 bench plane to take these 45 degree bevels on the sides to about 62 degrees. The closer I get to the finish beveled angle the thinner I adjust the blade for a shaving cut. I am getting a nice sheen smooth surface. This plane work is being done all edges, but the ends remain at 30 degrees and the sides wil...

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Part 34: Cut Table Top's Curve with Jigsaw

11-06-2016 01:25 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I had a very busy day today outside of my workshop. After coming back home from important family business, I decided to purchase some new jigsaw blades. I had run test cuts on some scrap pieces of wood. I determined that I needed at least two types of blades and these were dedicated for cutting hardwoods. I bought two different sets of blades from my local big box store. When I got them home I performed another test in order to verify its results I selected the Bosch T101BF blade lab...

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Part 35: Curved Beveled Table Sides

11-06-2016 08:03 PM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today I used my low angle block plane to smooth the curves I had cut with my jigsaw yesterday. These curves were marked in pencil by following a thin strip of hardwood bent between the ends indented 1 7/16 inches inside the corners and pulled out to the middle of the sides. My Bosch jigsaw fitted with a hardwood blade made a nice tear free cut. I was not sure how I was going to clamp the table top. The way it ended up was by accident. It was clear that I needed to soften the top̵...

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Part 36: I'm Not Sure How to Fix This Top

11-08-2016 03:22 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I have used my #6 and then my #4 smoother to get this point. I am not certain if I continue it will get better. Can you see the valleys? Tomorrow I will resharpen my blades and continue with planing this top’s surface, but I am wondering if I should use my card scraper or go to sanding. Any suggestions?

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Part 37: Completed Planing Table Top

11-10-2016 06:17 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I resharpened my bench planes and then resumed planing the cherry table top. having sharp blades helped me achieve a great surface for this top. I competed the work today by taking a damp towel and wiping both surfaces; especially where I had two dents or rough spots in the wood. Tomorrow I will replane the raised grain or use a card scraper or even a sanding black to knock down the raised grain.

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Part 38: Prepared Battens and Dowels

11-11-2016 03:34 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I went back into my shop after dinner this evening so I could drill pre-drill holes in the three battens that will fasten down on the underside of my table top. They will be there to hold the board panels that I glued and clamped together so the table remains flat. I also ripped a cherry 3/4” by 3/4” piece that I bought at Home Depot last night. I plan to make my own 1/4” cherry dowels with it. I have some red oak 1/4” dowels as backup in case my handmade dowels do...

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Part 39: Dowels and Buttons

11-12-2016 04:17 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I did not get this table completed today. I took my Annie to see Arrival this morning. Aliens came to Earth to ask humans for help. I’m not sure what they needed from us. I will need to watch it again with closed captions, or download the written script… You cannot understand what aliens are saying… These aliens look like octopuses. They also write like octopuses would by spraying ink in a pool of water.. Somehow ink spots are suppose to more intelligent than letter...

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Part 40: Layout Prior to Sanding and Finish

11-13-2016 03:20 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

Today I routed the mortises that will the slots that the buttons will fit in order to hold or fasten the table top to the leg assemblies. I used my brass bars to set the depth of my upcut router bit for the button slots I was about to route. My buttons will fit into these routed slots. They hold my table top to the leg assemblies. The buttons with the slots will allow for expansion and contraction with changes in humidity of the seasons.+ I laid out the battens and the legs on the t...

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Part 41: Sanded then Cleaned with Mineral Spirits

11-14-2016 03:27 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I started working in my shop thinking that I would apply my first coat of finish on this trestle table today, but I did not get that far. I decided to sand this table top instead of hand planing it further. I went through the several grits starting at 80, then the following in this order 120, 150, 180 and then 220. To remove the dust from each part I used mineral spirits with a paper towel. These pictures were taken following cleaning with that wet paper towel. I am still undecided...

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Part 42: Selected a Finish and Applied First Coat

11-15-2016 12:59 AM by HappyHowie | 0 comments »

I decided to test a few finishes in order to determine which I will apply to this trestle table. I gathered some small cherry sample. I made a trip to my local big box store for a can of Boiled Linseed Oil (BLO) as well as a gallon can of denatured alcohol and an additional can of natural Watco Danish Oil. These new additions go along with my Zinsser Shellac Seal Coat sanding sealer. My Annie picked the BLO for use on this table. She liked the darker finish as well as how it highlighte...

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Part 43: BLO 3rd Coat

11-19-2016 04:10 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

I am getting close to completing this project. This morning I applied my third coat of Boiled Linseed Oil (BLO). I made sure I soaked the end grain parts. In 48 hours I will give this project a thorough inspection in order to determine if any further coats needs to be applied. If three is enough, then I will fasten the battens to the table top’s underside with #6 – 1 inch long square drive flat head screws. I will hand screw these in. The table top for sure is gain a nice...

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Part 44: Battens Fastened

11-20-2016 04:50 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

I wiped each part. I then fastened the battens by aligning them to the knife marks I had made before applying the BLO finish. Three #6 – 1 inch flathead screws for each batten. I also decided to add another thin coat of BLO. I may wait another 48 hours before assembling the table.

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Part 45: Brought the Table Inside to Aid Drying of Oil Finish

11-22-2016 05:30 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

Simply the weather is turning colder and its rainy. In order to enhance the dry time, I brought the trestle table in doors to an empty bedroom. I will store it here so the oil finish will dry quicker than it would in the woodshop. I will give this table a few weeks to dry before I start to apply paste wax and buff it.

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Part 46: How Should I Finish This Table Top?

11-24-2016 07:25 PM by HappyHowie | 6 comments »

If I was to start over with selecting the finish coats for this table, I would not use Boiled Linseed Oil (BLO). I do believe that it has gone on okay. I am satisfied that the BLO has done what it can. However, the blotchiness on the table top does bother me. I believe as the cherry ages that the blotchiness will dissipate, if not disappear in time. However, I know there is not a guarantee about that result. My options from here are (1) continue to apply more BLO, (2) spray some Shella...

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Part 47: Added Second Coat of Danish Oil

11-30-2016 05:56 AM by HappyHowie | 4 comments »

I like how the cherry hardwood is reacting to the coats of Danish Oil I have applied on top of the three coats of Boiled Linseed Oil (BLO). I will check tomorrow if this table needs a fourth coat of Danish Oil. So far what I have applied looks great. If anything else is required it will be a good buffing of Briwax furniture wax.

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Part 48: Waxed Surfaces of Table Parts

12-09-2016 05:26 AM by HappyHowie | 2 comments »

I applied and buff some of my dark brown past wax on the trestle table.

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