Coffee Table in curly maple and padauk

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Project by Konquest posted 01-13-2009 05:51 AM 7354 views 5 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is the finished project of one I posted earlier in progress: a coffee table for my rec room. I got the wildest pieces of curly maple for this table, saving up a stash for a special project. My design theory being, “Simple design, wild wood; wild design, simple wood”. The top is alternating laminated pieces of ambrosia and curly maple and the aprons have a strip of padauk which is approximately the same shade as parts of an adjacent (not shown) area rug in my basement, as well as the red/orange felt on the pool table. I wish that article about using aerosal shellac to seal in oily woods in FWW would have come sooner in the finishing process. This is my fourth overall furniture building project but I have done a lot of trim carpentery stuff in my house since finishing the basement after a flood. I bought a jointer (delta X5 6”) and planer (steel city 13”) during this project and now I am 100% hooked. You can see another nice hunk of maple in one picture: my Modulus Graphite Q5.

-- 9 3/4 fingers remaining.

14 comments so far

View TomK 's profile


504 posts in 4381 days

#1 posted 01-13-2009 06:10 AM

Great looking table. That really is some radical curly maple! I like the padauk accent.

-- If you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it's free! PJ O'Rourke

View WispWoods's profile


65 posts in 3933 days

#2 posted 01-13-2009 06:17 AM

Great wood, Great design. Where do you get wood like that?

-- - You begin thinking less, and feeling more.

View woodworm's profile


14475 posts in 4097 days

#3 posted 01-13-2009 06:36 AM

Beautiful table out of beautiful wood.Great work!
Curly maple…...if look can kill….

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View Konquest's profile


171 posts in 3950 days

#4 posted 01-13-2009 06:45 AM

I’ve cherry picked the woodcraft stores in Milwaukee and Madison WI for years. Got the Ambrosia piece at Rockler with a 25% coupon. I also have gotten some stuff from a place in Illinois whose name escapes me. Basically just buying one cool board at a time with coupons. I’m in no hurry. Focus has shifted now on challenging myself with a sideboard with resawn zebrawood panels. Like I said: 100% hooked.

-- 9 3/4 fingers remaining.

View Rxmpo's profile


269 posts in 4252 days

#5 posted 01-13-2009 06:47 AM

Great lookin table and awesome job on the wainscoting! The wood is fantastic!

View Kerux's profile


812 posts in 4390 days

#6 posted 01-13-2009 07:34 AM

That is some amazing wood and looks like some real good craftmanship. Congratulations.


View motthunter's profile


2141 posts in 4305 days

#7 posted 01-13-2009 04:38 PM

I love the wood..

-- making sawdust....

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 4530 days

#8 posted 01-17-2009 03:22 AM

Awesome. Looks like the guitar is real nice also.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View TheHarr's profile


119 posts in 4045 days

#9 posted 01-25-2009 05:56 PM

I like your design theory. I’ll keep that in mind. Your coffee table jumped out at me over all the
projects I have been viewing. Nice job—and I don’t say that very often. What finishing materials did you use?
I am always looking ways to make the grain in curley maple pop.

Looking forward to your reply.

-- The wood is good.

View Konquest's profile


171 posts in 3950 days

#10 posted 01-27-2009 04:40 AM

Thank you for the kind words. It is very humbling posting something on this site. For the finish I sanded to 400 grit, raised the grain with a spray bottle of water, and sanded again. Then I flooded the top with boiled linseed oil, let sit half an hour, then wiped off the excess. I did this twice with two days in between and a space heater under my workbench to aid in the drying. From there I simply did about 4 coats of the minwax oil based polyurethane (gloss). In a month or so when I am 100% certain that the whole thing is cured, I am going to go back over it up to 1200 grit and then polish with a buffing attachment on the random orbital sander so it looks like glass. That gloss is really unforgiving…when the light hits it you see all kinds of brush marks and imperfections.

-- 9 3/4 fingers remaining.

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 4220 days

#11 posted 01-27-2009 04:46 AM

Wow, that’s some crazy wood… it looks terrific. Great Job!

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View coloradoclimber's profile


548 posts in 4574 days

#12 posted 01-27-2009 06:53 AM

Whoa!! that is beautiful. Really really nice. Excellent use of some beautiful wood.

View woodbug's profile


6 posts in 3913 days

#13 posted 03-06-2009 05:55 AM

Table looks awesome. Great job. I wish I had a workshop. I see the guitar. I play too.

View McLeanVA's profile


493 posts in 3940 days

#14 posted 03-24-2009 08:19 PM

Really inspiring table. Thanks for the finishing tips. I’m underway with a cherry night stand and am looking for simple steps to a nice clean finish.

I also love the signature quote. I too have a 2 year old daughter that forces me to work nights. I joked to my wife that I’m going to start a blog titled “The Silent Woodworker” because I can’t use power tools in the garage while she sleeps. Forces me to do a lot of hand tool work. I’m on mortise #2 out of 16, using nothing but the pad of my hand and a very sharp 1/4 chisel. My hand is a bit black and blue, but the mortises are gorgeous.

Great table, and while I know nothing about guitars, that’s one cool piece to look at.

-- Measure, cut, curse, repeat.

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