Walnut TV Stand

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Blog entry by Kevin Depies posted 03-06-2009 11:13 PM 2288 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello, this is my first post on LJ’s! Here is the current project I am working on – a TV stand / entertainment center… whatever you want to call it : ) I’m a little further along than these photos, which were taken a couple weeks ago. This is basically it though, minus an adjustable shelf for the opening in the middle and some handles for the doors, both of which are made now.



I am looking for ideas on what type of finish to use on this project as finishing is one area that I need a lot more education and experience. I was thinking of just using a clear finish such as an oil/varnish mix or shellac, but my problem is that the plywood carcass & panels in this piece is noticeably lighter in color than the hardwood frame. If I started with a stain, would that even out things out, or would everything still be relative – that is darker, but same amount of difference between the hardwood & plywood?

Also, I’d rather not make this piece too much darker since it is already walnut. If I did stain, I’d want to go for a sort of espresso look, I guess. Any suggestions?

BTW, sorry for the lousy cell phone pics. I’ll use a better camera in the future : )

5 comments so far

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4687 days

#1 posted 03-07-2009 01:07 AM

Welcome to LJs! I’m too new to woodworking to offer finishing advice but from what I have been reading here it seems shellac is a pretty versatile finish.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 4461 days

#2 posted 03-07-2009 01:09 AM

try out some finishing recipes on scrap pieces. make sure you label the pieces with exactly what finishing techniques you use, including sanding etc. no way would i put any finish on such a nice piece as you’ve built without experimenting on scrap first.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

View woodworm's profile


14477 posts in 4565 days

#3 posted 03-07-2009 02:25 AM

Looks like a very beautiful TV Stand.
Very eager to see it finished. But do not in a hurry. Finishing is the most critical part in ww.

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View Kevin Depies's profile

Kevin Depies

104 posts in 4343 days

#4 posted 03-07-2009 07:16 PM

Thanks for your advice everyone.

David, yes, I’ll definitely be trying a few different finishes on scrap to see what’s best.

Woodworm, thanks for the comment, and trust me, I go through any process quiet slow : )

Brian, yeah, I’ll probably go without any stain. Aside from the varnish, hopefully the ply will darken up a bit in the first year or so just due to light exposure. Of course, the hardwood will probably darken up at the same time so the contrast will still be there, but whatever. I just need to move on and finish this piece up! I’d like to build a coffee table to match too.

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5221 days

#5 posted 03-07-2009 09:15 PM

Try Waterlox Original, then a Polyurethane finish over that. But like the man said try it out on scraps first. You can order Waterlox through Woodcraft. It’s a nice even light tung based oil stain that pops walnut grain. I think you’d be pleased with the results. I use it on most of my turnings. Welcome to LJs.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

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