Birdseye and Curly Maple Entertainment Center

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Project by LukieB posted 01-09-2012 11:19 PM 5627 views 8 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This project started years ago when I got some “scrap” birdseye maple plywood from the cabinet/millwork shop I was working for. A customer covered the entire inside of their 10,000 square foot home in Aspen with sequenced matched birdseye maple ply(ceilings and all). All the windows in the house had to be cut out of the full sheets on the CNC machine that I ran. With tons of cutout scraps in hand, I racked my brain for a project worthy enough of this beautiful “scrap”. I came up with a design that I liked that made efficient use of all the pieces that I had, and went out and bought some solid birdseye for the face frame, surfaced it down and got all the parts laid out.

Then the project sat through the craziest three years of my life(got married, bought a house, had a kid, lost my job, setup a shop, and inherited a company.) I saw plans for this on an ad for Woodsmith magazine and bought the plans from They inspired me to get going on this again. I liked the “add em as you go” design. The whole thing is six separate pieces connected with hidden t-nuts and furniture bolts. I liked the design much better than what I had designed, but wanted to keep some of the features from the old design. This is kind of a hybrid of both.

It holds my 40” flat screen, but it’s big enough for up to a 50”upgrade:) Fixed shelves hold all the electronic gear including my vintage gaming systems (yes that’s a functional original Nintendo.) The glass doors allow the remotes to work on the equipment behind them. I used seedy glass (with the bubbles in it) because I thought it would look cool with the birdseye. Four drawers house all of my DVD collection, my first attempt at dovetailed drawers are shown off with Blum’s under-mount soft-close drawer slides. The faces of the drawers are birdseye frames with solid curly maple panels, same with the side cabinets doors. Thanks to Paul Taran at for the amazing solid curly maple.

About another year passed after I finished the base before I started the upper cabinets. I soon realized my birdseye plywood was not going to work like I thought for the top because it was only birdseye on one side and random on the other, and the upper cabinets were visible on both sides. Big big thank you to Joe at for all his information, outstanding customer service and for the amazing flitch of birdseye veneer he sold me. His other site is very helpful and informative if your interested in doing veneer work and don’t know anything about it. The veneer came out great and turned out to be pretty easy, it looks spectacular under the LED puck lights in the top 5 bays.

Finish is lots of shellac, followed my even more semi-gloss pre-catalyzed urethane. Between this and the matching coffee table and the learning curve of the sprayer, about a gallon and a half.

All this work, time and money and it’s still not done, I’m planning on adding a curly maple crown moulding around the top to tie it all together. But in the meantime, it’s functional. If you read all this, I sincerely thank you for showing interest, spent a lot of time on this bad boy, and I’m pretty proud of it. So happy to have found this great site.

-- Lucas, "Someday woodworks will be my real job, until then, there's this"

19 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118322 posts in 5033 days

#1 posted 01-09-2012 11:22 PM

Wow Lukie
That is one spectacular entertainment center with out of this world wood. Fantastic work


View Bertha's profile


13635 posts in 4149 days

#2 posted 01-09-2012 11:24 PM

Yowsers! That maple is spectacular. This is an ambitious piece, very well executed. I gotta tell you though….that purple wall, man. Lol;)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View LukieB's profile


966 posts in 3786 days

#3 posted 01-09-2012 11:26 PM

LOL, the wifey’s pick, no offense taken.

-- Lucas, "Someday woodworks will be my real job, until then, there's this"

View Bertha's profile


13635 posts in 4149 days

#4 posted 01-09-2012 11:29 PM

^Good! I’m one to talk, I’ve got a red wall in my house…I’m talking RED. The fiance likes it, so what’s a guy to do. I seriously like that piece. Seriously.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View LukieB's profile


966 posts in 3786 days

#5 posted 01-09-2012 11:43 PM

That really made me laugh out loud, I’m ashamed to say that the other side of that wall is RED, but I pick my battles, she lets me keep the pool table in the garage instead of her car:)

-- Lucas, "Someday woodworks will be my real job, until then, there's this"

View Pdub's profile


926 posts in 4636 days

#6 posted 01-09-2012 11:49 PM

BEAUTIFUL!!! The wood and the work.

-- Paul, North Dakota, USAF Ret.

View MasterSergeant's profile


1441 posts in 4144 days

#7 posted 01-09-2012 11:57 PM

Gorgeous piece, congratulations!!

-- Kelly, woodworker under construction

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 5012 days

#8 posted 01-10-2012 12:58 AM

Pure craftsmanship, virtually flawless, thanks for posting

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View wookie's profile


154 posts in 4540 days

#9 posted 01-10-2012 01:03 AM

One of the best lookin’ entertainment centers yet.

-- Wookie=Wood Rookie

View shopmania's profile


702 posts in 4638 days

#10 posted 01-10-2012 01:21 AM

Awesome wood and workmanship!

-- Tim, Myrtle Beach, [email protected] Just one more tool, that's all I need! :)

View Stanley Coker's profile

Stanley Coker

271 posts in 4652 days

#11 posted 01-10-2012 03:04 AM

Great Wood and Great Work

-- Stanley, North Georgia

View meaded's profile


410 posts in 5163 days

#12 posted 01-10-2012 04:49 AM

That is a wonderful piece. Congratulations.

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3672 posts in 5168 days

#13 posted 01-10-2012 05:42 AM


Gorgeous wood and quality workmanship. Thanks for sharing.


-- Voltaire: “Those Who Can Make You Believe Absurdities, Can Make You Commit Atrocities” There are 112 genders (not including male and female)

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 4651 days

#14 posted 01-10-2012 02:33 PM

Truly gorgeous! great design and beautiful wood. I like the lighting up top as well, nice details

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View bvdon's profile


503 posts in 4471 days

#15 posted 01-10-2012 09:29 PM

Really nice work and the wood is gorgeous.

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