Imbuia, Andiroba & Maple Cutting Board

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Project by DRdeveloper posted 12-09-2008 02:55 AM 2286 views 1 time favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Imbuia, Andiroba & Maple Cutting Board
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A big “thank you” to everyone who has been posting their cutting boards on lumberjocks (especially the people who have been showing us all how to do it with their blogs). This was my first cutting board and I was amazed at how easy it was to do (now if I can just get the second one unglued from the workbench…)

I did this from local lumber – Imbuia is a Brazilian Walnut that grows here in the Dominican Republic. The variety that we have here is a dense black wood that reminds me of ebony… when you cut it, it smells sort of like chocolate mixed with creosote (cocktails anyone?). Andiroba is a type of Mahogany that grows here also. I’m not sure what cultivar of maple I am using but I am 99% sure it is maple.

I’ve been looking for some projects that I can use to teach basic skills to some of the folks who live in the village near my farm here. I think we will try working on some cutting boards that can be sold to tourists – if a person can build one or two of these per day and then sell them to the local souvenir shops with a $15 profit, that is a good job that will put that person at the high end of the village earnings scale… wish me luck!

-- Mark, Dominican Republic

8 comments so far

View Max's profile


56000 posts in 4838 days

#1 posted 12-09-2008 02:58 AM

That turned out really nice. Hope you are able to get the sales going…..Good luck and let us know how it goes.

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View Ampeater's profile


441 posts in 4312 days

#2 posted 12-09-2008 04:43 AM

Very nice. Your design is beautiful. You and the villagers will sell lots of them.

-- "A goal without a plan is a wish."

View Napaman's profile


5530 posts in 4642 days

#3 posted 12-09-2008 05:09 AM

wow that is great…and I would love to hear more about the village you are living in (I teach high school social studies and I had a student a few years ago from the Dominican Republic).

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View jm82435's profile


1285 posts in 4307 days

#4 posted 12-09-2008 06:23 PM

Nice looking board. Wow, I didn’t know The DR had available commercial hardwoods. I was there about 20 years ago. I heard the trees were supposed to be protected from cutting. (though from all the smoke and charcoal making they obviously weren’t). The story I heard was the island had pretty much been clear cut before WW II to build ships out of. The only wood legally available was stumps. I brought back a piece of root I was given by a local artisan who had dug it up. I know what you mean about the chocolate smell. I did not know what the species was until now (thanks). It must be nice to have those resources locally, I am sure that Imbuia is very valuable. It is beautiful, as you said very dense and polishes easily.

-- A thing of beauty is a joy forever...

View Betsy's profile


3392 posts in 4461 days

#5 posted 12-09-2008 08:45 PM

Good luck with helping the villagers. I’m with Napaman – I’d like to hear more.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View DRdeveloper's profile


23 posts in 4030 days

#6 posted 12-10-2008 01:09 PM

Contrary to popular belief, we have thousands of square miles of forest here on the island of Hispaniola. The island has two parts – Haiti is on one side (the West) and the Dominican Republic occupies about 70% of the island on the East.

The Haitian side is an environmental disaster and is almost devoid of greenery, whereas the Dominican Side, which has been well cared for, is a lush tropical paradise. This is a big island (4.5 hours to drive from North to South, which is the shorter of the two distances) and, in the middle are several magnificent mountain ranges. In some places, at the higher altitudes, you would think you are in the Adirondacks based on the vegetation. Pico Duarte, the highest mountain in the Caribbean, is 10,800 feet high and absolutely beautiful (I have climbed it twice) – and, it gets cold up there…

Anyway… we have every kind of tree you can imagine here… as well as a government that is pretty serious about protecting the environment. They don’t always have the money they need to protect it properly in the tourist areas, but the interior is pristine.

Anyway… I’ll keep you all posted on what happens with my cutting board idea. I’m heading to the states for 3 weeks to go skiing but, when I get back, it will be full steam ahead.

-- Mark, Dominican Republic

View carlbigman's profile


17 posts in 3945 days

#7 posted 03-11-2009 08:11 AM

It’s a wonderfully rich cutting board design (too nice to actually cut anything on!). It’s great that you care for people less fortunate too, Mark. We should all find someone to teach our skills too, be we basic, intermediate, or advanced woodworkers and craftsmen. Good luck with you plans.

View degoose's profile


7264 posts in 3919 days

#8 posted 04-13-2009 09:03 PM

Simple and elegant!

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

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