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Butcher Block Kitchen Table

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Blog series by Jimi_C updated 10-25-2010 07:30 AM 12 parts 53994 reads 30 comments total

Part 1: The Plan

04-04-2010 06:01 AM by Jimi_C | 8 comments »

It feels good finally to be getting back to wood working. During late December-February, my garage was just too damn cold to work in, despite having two space heaters going (the wife was too scared of propane-based heat sources, so those were nixed…). Then, in February, we decided to put our house on the market – so all free time started going to fixing things up and getting our house ready to sell. That’s all done with, so it’s time to get some wood working done. ...

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Part 2: Progress on the Legs

04-21-2010 05:43 AM by Jimi_C | 3 comments »

I got the legs all milled up, 1 3/4” square, and cut the bevels on the bottom. I screwed a fence to my mitre gauge, which had a block of wood glued to it which allowed me to keep the bevels somewhat consistent. I say somewhat, because I think my mitre gauge didn’t lock down when tightened, as there is a very slight variation in the bevels so they don’t meet up in the back on all the legs. Obviously nothing to care about – the only way you’d be able to see the ...

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Part 3: More Progress, and a Bandsaw Restoration Update

05-03-2010 01:52 AM by Jimi_C | 2 comments »

Haven’t had much time to work in the last few weeks, my wife and I are in the process of selling our house/buying a new one, and we finally got a contract on our house! We also had our contract accepted for the house we want, so we’ve been in the process of getting inspections and tests and all the crap you have to go through. Thankfully, we only had a few minor things to correct in our house (fire detectors in every room, our garage stair case railing had more than a 4” g...

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Part 4: Mostly Done Except for the Top

05-06-2010 02:50 PM by Jimi_C | 3 comments »

Here’s the dry-fit, the tape’s on there to keep it from falling apart when I adjust things/check for square. All the stretchers have been resized to match the shelf size: Here’s a detail of how the leg holds the shelf: I still need to clean that up a little since there’s a bit of a gap on all 4 legs, which means I may need to trim a little off the stretchers again (maybe just 1/16” or so from each end). As for the top, I know this is supposed to...

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Part 5: Breadboard Ends

05-15-2010 11:33 PM by Jimi_C | 3 comments »

Purplev pointed out something in a comment on my last blog entry for this, and it was something that had occurred to me – however I chose to ignore it on the basis of “I’ve seen other tables built the same way, so mine shouldn’t have any problems…”. Of course, that’s idiotic, and I’m man enough to admit it :) So, I started thinking of potential solutions, and when it hit me it was so obvious I kicked myself for not thinking of it sooner –...

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Part 6: Progress in the new workshop

07-14-2010 06:17 AM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Finally started getting things organized a bit in the basement, and had some free time tonight so I decided to pick up work on this. During the house move, some of the wood sat in a VERY hot car for a few days, and had warped a little bit (even the panel with the breadboard ends had cupped noticeably). To try and counter this, I stickered it in the basement for a few weeks with some weight on it to try and reverse the bends, and it seems to have worked fairly well. So, where I’d le...

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Part 7: Sanding, Sanding, and More Sanding

07-20-2010 06:43 AM by Jimi_C | 0 comments »

Tonight, I finished tuning up the shoulders of the stretchers, since I noticed that some of them were 1/32” or slightly more out of square on one or more edges… that’s what I get for adjusting the fit of the cheeks with a sanding block. Also, I had to make the stretchers the correct length to match the shelf – the long stretchers were about 1/8” too long. So, I made a couple of paring blocks (also cut for paring dovetails), and cleaned everything up. A test fi...

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Part 8: Glued Up

07-21-2010 06:34 AM by Jimi_C | 1 comment »

Here’s the glue up. First I glued the short sides together (no pics, sorry) with a spacer clamped below the legs near where the shelf would be, just to make sure everything stayed square. After both sides dried for a bit, I took the clamps off, cleaned up the squeeze out, and glued the whole thing together: After the clamps came off, here’s what it looked like: Everything is remarkably square – considering all of these pieces were in my car for a week dur...

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Part 9: First Coat of Stain Is On

07-30-2010 04:05 AM by Jimi_C | 1 comment »

After testing out my sample piece, I decided to go for it with the table. This is a learning experience after all, isn’t it? :) Sanded out the second coat of conditioner this morning before work, and when I got home I started applying the stain. Here’s the result: Overall, the process was easy – wipe on, wipe off – just kept trying to work in small sections so the gel stain didn’t dry too much. One minute max, and I went back and started wiping ex...

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Part 10: Base Frame Done

08-09-2010 02:35 AM by Jimi_C | 1 comment »

I did 3 coats of poly on the legs/aprons, and 5 on the lower shelf. Overall, I’m pretty happy with it, though I did not sand the bottom shelf as well as I should have. I got antsy wanting to get it all together and thought I had sanded enough, though really all I did was clean up the joints between the boards – so the machine ripples are still evident at the right lighting angle. But, for the first thing I’ve ever designed, built, and finished from scratch I think i...

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Part 11: The Actual "Butcher Block" part of the table...

08-21-2010 03:36 AM by Jimi_C | 2 comments »

Lots of cutting the last 2 nights… It’s not glued yet, the clamps are just there to help me hold it together and measure stuff. Tomorrow I’ll start gluing the strips up 6 or so at a time, and run them through the jointer/planer all at once to ensure they’re the proper thickness. Right now, they’re just over 1” thick, so hopefully when I’m done they won’t be 1/2”... I’ve bailed on the end-grain idea – this is going ...

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Part 12: Nearing completion of the top (finally...)

10-25-2010 07:30 AM by Jimi_C | 6 comments »

When we last left off, I had milled all the pieces for the top. Not long after that, I had glued them up in groups of 5-6 pieces each, and had run those through the planer to make them all a consistent thickness (just under 1”, maybe 15/16”). Due to a lot of personal stuff going on, I didn’t have a lot of shop time for the next month or so, but I’ve finally gotten some time back and have made more progress. Earlier this week, I glued up the smaller sections into t...

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