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Blog entry by a1Jim posted 07-17-2009 04:10 AM 6831 reads 2 times favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve been working on this pie crust table for a few months of and on . The techniques are from Charles Neils “The Magic of Routers” video, and Some of GaryK’s ideas plus a book called “Making a Piecrust Tea Table by Tom Heller & Ron Clarkson” This is a project that I’ve never done before and I’m most amazed how Charles and Gary are so innovative In coming up with there own but similar approach to making the tops with routers. An Tom Heller and Ron Clarkson’s book was a great step by step approach to making this table and very good details with a couple exceptions, I used their book for the making of the pedestal,legs and bird cage. Although a professional woodworker I have not ever built a tilt top table before or had I’d done any carving. Lastly I’m always in awe of the likes of Garyk,Larry, David and others fine explanation and photos of there Blogs. Since I’ve only done short blogs in the past please hang in there if I don’t have the polish That many of the others have. I’ll do the best I can but to see it in video Charles Neils Video is the way to go. Remember this is mostly his technique I’m using.

(I’m highlighting Ideas or choices I would do differently next time or where I have made mistakes

The first thing I had to do is select the type of wood I wanted to use
Given that this was a practice piece and that I wanted to try a new finishing technique I selected Poplar because It was inexpensive also. I feel this was a mistake because I had not carved before and poplar is very fuzzy when carved taking much more time to smooth out, also there has been a good amount of time on this project and a more suitable wood like mahogany would have made a better finished Project.

After ordering six quarter poplar for the pie crust table top and 16 quarter poplar for the Legs and center pedestal . But they sent ¾” material saying the sales man was wrong about having six quarter poplar being available. So now I get to get to resaw some six quarter.



After re sawing I glued three sections of 1 1/8 ” poplar together so that I had a panel that was approximately 40”x40” . Mistake I glued this up being careful to make sure it was set on calls so that I would not get in to cupping. problems This was a great idea and i had no problem until I kept moving it around my shop were it eventually ended up stored on edge on the concrete floor for 6 weeks or so. when I was ready to start after working on the legs an pedestal i had cupping issues were I had to saw it into sections and re glue it back together straight
The next installment covers making a jig to make a Jig(s)

Link to Charles Neil “The Magic of Routers
were I got this whole process from

Links to my pie crust table blogs











27 comments so far

View patron's profile


13708 posts in 4196 days

#1 posted 07-17-2009 04:18 AM

great test and reach for you jim .
i’m looking forward to seeing the step by step ,
especialy how you used all of your routers
to accomplish the finished piece !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Karson's profile


35226 posts in 5256 days

#2 posted 07-17-2009 04:33 AM

Great start So keep it coming.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 4181 days

#3 posted 07-17-2009 04:39 AM

ditto….look forward to following along.

-- Don S.E. OK

View Jim's profile


254 posts in 4500 days

#4 posted 07-17-2009 04:41 AM

Hi Jim, I don’t know what a pie crust table is so I’m looking forward to watching your progress and seeing the end results.

-- Jim in Langley BC Canada ---

View blackcherry's profile


3344 posts in 4678 days

#5 posted 07-17-2009 05:00 AM

Nice start Jim , you’re lumber choice looks impressive, looking forward to seeing your progress thanks for posting …Blkcherry

View gbvinc's profile


629 posts in 4802 days

#6 posted 07-17-2009 05:02 AM

Great start. It will be interesting to see this one come together!

View PurpLev's profile


8588 posts in 4504 days

#7 posted 07-17-2009 05:07 AM

great beginning – sorry to hear about the panel sucking moisture from the floor… those things you don’t think about come and bite you in the a$$...

looking forward to seeing the jig of jigs.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

14186 posts in 4838 days

#8 posted 07-17-2009 05:20 AM

we will be watching ! good start

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4843 days

#9 posted 07-17-2009 05:54 AM

You could have used one of those small space heaters on the moist side. It would have straightened it out.

I have never seen Neils video, so It will be interesting for me to watch your progress.

For a cheap stable non-fuzzing wood, you could have gone with bass. Most places it’s cheaper than poplar.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View a1Jim's profile


118136 posts in 4432 days

#10 posted 07-17-2009 06:04 AM

Good suggestions Gary
I don’t have any local suppliers for bass(or much of anything) but it’s a good idea. I wanted to start that day ,it only took about 20 minutes to rip into 3 pieces ,joint and re-glue.


View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4158 days

#11 posted 07-17-2009 06:14 AM

looking forward to this project jim…have fun..always fun to learn new things….grizzman

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View blockhead's profile


1475 posts in 4164 days

#12 posted 07-17-2009 11:34 AM

Can’t wait for the next installlment. Keep’em coming Jim.

-- Brad, Oregon- The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first.

View cabinetmaster's profile


10873 posts in 4413 days

#13 posted 07-17-2009 12:35 PM

You got my interest too on this one Jim. I’ll be watching.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View ellen35's profile


2749 posts in 4287 days

#14 posted 07-17-2009 12:35 PM

Very interesting Jim!
This should be a great tutorial!

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 4216 days

#15 posted 07-17-2009 01:03 PM

Hey Jim,
This will be a great building procedure and learning experience for us all…....well done so far.

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