10 x 4 redwood slab table with malachite and shell inlay

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Project by rusticandy posted 08-29-2010 07:27 AM 12737 views 20 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Finally had time to post this big redwood table that I completed a month ago. It was a commission from a local winemaker. He provided the redwood and the shells for inlay.

Working the slab was a challenge. I had to strap four sawhorses together, to support the slab as I worked it.

I actually split it in two with a sledge and a froe as it has a split right at the center rings of the tree. I worked the bottom of each piece, as they were small enough for me to flip myself.

I then flipped them over (top side up) and doweled them together with 8 1×12 oak dowels. This got me through the wood near the middle of the slab that is prone to movement.

To flatten the slab, I used my huge 1806B 6 3/4 Makita planer, and crosshatched the slab. I then came over it with a belt sander w/ a sanding frame, and finally the r/o sander. I popped the grain with shellac and coated with Target poly. I had to spray the underside lying on my back. and moving the sawhorses as needed.

The inlay is a mix of crushed malachite and epoxy resin. I grind it off with a concrete grinder, and finish with a belt sander and RO sander. You use LOTS of sand paper doing these sections!!!

They were so pleased that in addition to the payment, they set us up with about two cases of quality local wine (Minassian Young) in addition!

Oh- the base is made of Monterey Cypress- a beautiful stable local wood- the joint is a simple through tenon with a shoulder.

Other than house additions, it’s the biggest Damn thing I’ve built yet!!!

-- rustic andy

20 comments so far

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 5382 days

#1 posted 08-29-2010 08:04 AM

Nice looking job.

Well executed and good interpretation of the given materials.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View DBnR's profile


14 posts in 4311 days

#2 posted 08-29-2010 10:22 AM

I’m amazed… and a little jealous.
Must’ve been a fun project.

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 4644 days

#3 posted 08-29-2010 11:35 AM

Hey Andy,
Now that is cool….well done.

View mahadevwood's profile


415 posts in 4302 days

#4 posted 08-29-2010 12:18 PM

nice job, amazing finishing

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 4121 days

#5 posted 08-29-2010 12:25 PM

Beautiful table! After you split the table and inserted the inlay material how did you keep the material from falling through the big crack?
PS I found a good “how to” article by Stephen Hatcher- it’s a pdf file… here’s the link.

another article- inludes specific details for materials/supplierst etc. also a pdf file.

another good one

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View obi999's profile


213 posts in 4691 days

#6 posted 08-29-2010 12:54 PM

Oh wow, its an absolutely perfect table and a pleasure to the eyes of an woodworker and “wood-lover”. I am sure, the real beauty finally comes out in a room with the additional ambience.
very cool job, thanks for sharing

-- *** the german lumberjock ***

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 4121 days

#7 posted 08-29-2010 01:41 PM

Wood anthracite coal work for an inlay?

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View TZH's profile


637 posts in 4423 days

#8 posted 08-29-2010 03:19 PM

Beautiful table, beautiful inlay work, once again. You’ve just given me the inspiration I need to do a similar style table for a dining room. In fact, your design for the base is exactly what I’ve been looking for as this couple wants a live edge slab for the top (probably juniper), but a more “machined” look for the base. Your’s could be adapted to work for them, and looks to be sturdy enough to support just about any weight load it gets subjected to. Once again, your artistic design, combined with the naturalness of the wood itself and the superb inlay work, blows me away. Thanks for sharing.


-- Where The Spirit In Wood Lives On

View DiamondWW's profile


85 posts in 4516 days

#9 posted 08-29-2010 03:33 PM

Wow! that is incredible. I like the way you did the inlay. Awesome work!

-- There is no such thing as scrap wood, only smaller projects.

View Gary's profile


1514 posts in 5607 days

#10 posted 08-29-2010 03:41 PM

Great looking table. Even my wife noticed it from across the room as she was shoulder-surfing my viewing.

-- Gary, Florida

View jeth's profile


262 posts in 4121 days

#11 posted 08-29-2010 04:15 PM

A very beautiful piece, love the inlay work and the colour contrast. Inspired and impressed once again.

View jim1953's profile


2744 posts in 5125 days

#12 posted 08-30-2010 02:25 AM

Great Lookin Job

-- Jim, Kentucky

View Dark_Lightning's profile


4933 posts in 4392 days

#13 posted 08-30-2010 02:29 AM


Reminds of the bubinga slabs I see at my dream website. Maybe I could afford a redwood slab instead.

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

View GabrielX's profile


231 posts in 4114 days

#14 posted 08-31-2010 12:12 AM

There is just something to be said about a big redwood table…

-- GX

View zlatanv's profile


691 posts in 4517 days

#15 posted 08-31-2010 12:51 AM

Nice job, i like your other stuff too.

-- Z, Rockwall, TX

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