Dining table inspired by the Greene & Greene Thorsen table #11: Pattern Routing the Segmented Table Edges

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Blog entry by TungOil posted 05-06-2017 02:33 AM 2582 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 10: Gluing Up and Pattern Routing the Table Halves Part 11 of Dining table inspired by the Greene & Greene Thorsen table series Part 12: Table Edge Assembly »

In laying out the segmented edges for the top, my goal is to highlight the figured grain in the center of the table without drawing attention to the edge border. I select a single 8/4” quarter sawn board long enough to cut all of the border parts in sequence. The quarter sawn material has a distinctly different appearance and displays the classic ribbon strip pattern. By cutting the borders from a single board I get the best color consistency around the table. By laying out the parts in sequence on the board, I get a nearly perfect grain match that flows around the table nicely.

After I rip the rough stock to width, I true up one edge and one face on the jointer then lay out the border segments for rough cutting on the bandsaw.

I trace around the routing templates.

I carefully label each piece to be sure they stay in the proper order.

By keeping the parts just a bit more than a saw kerf apart, I get a good grain match from part to part.

Pattern routing the parts needs to be done carefully to avoid blowing out the end grain and ruining the piece. To keep the grain match I cannot afford to lose any pieces to careless machining, so I support both edges when I route the end grain with the scraps from rough cutting on the bandsaw. The routing pattern is held firmly to the part with double sided tape.

By using a top/bottom bearing pattern bit I can adjust the router height and flip the part so each cut is properly with the grain.

After completing the end grain, I finish the parts by routing the long edges.

The end result is a nearly perfect fit.

I finish out the remaining parts and carefully label each one, then move on to a quick test fit of all seven segments around one of the table halves. First I try a Merle band clamp around the perimeter of the top, but the tightening action of the clamp stretches the band enough to separate the segments. Next I try some ratcheting strap clamps, one over each segment. This works much better to pull all the segments up tight to the center core without any gaps. The strap clamps will be the best way to draw the segments tight to the table core while maintaining alignment between the parts.

Next step: drill and punch the holes for the square ebony plugs, then attach the edges to the table cores.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

3 comments so far

View EarlS's profile


4748 posts in 3587 days

#1 posted 05-07-2017 03:13 PM

Well thought out approach to the curved ends. With the plywood cores, you shouldn’t have to worry about wood movement. Thanks for posting all the details.

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View TungOil's profile


1384 posts in 1734 days

#2 posted 05-08-2017 03:48 AM

Yep, the border treatment required a plywood core. Doing the veneer work was a lot more work than a solid wood core for sure!

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4386 days

#3 posted 05-08-2017 08:58 PM

Looks like she’s coming along nicely—can’t wait to see the finished project!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

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