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Project by FritzM posted 04-24-2008 02:35 AM 4188 views 13 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Dimensions: 16” tall x 16” deep x 62” long.
Wood: Walnut
Finish: 4 coats Oil/Varnish blend (per FWW article this month)

Yep, I dominoed and glued the bench panel cross grain to the legs. It’s an experiment to see if it fails. If it does, lesson learned. If not, I’ll have a better sense of cross grain limitations. There are 2 (3/4”x3/4” aluminum angles set in grooves and screwed to the underside to help support the span.

-- Fritz Oakland, Ca (dedicated to my other hobby)

22 comments so far

View jjohn's profile


390 posts in 4162 days

#1 posted 04-24-2008 02:46 AM

Looks great. Is there any bow in the middle when you sit on it ?

-- JJohn

View gusthehonky's profile


130 posts in 4191 days

#2 posted 04-24-2008 03:00 AM

Really cool! Hope your experiment holds together. I really like this unique and unorthodox design.

-- Ciao, gth.

View motthunter's profile


2141 posts in 4248 days

#3 posted 04-24-2008 03:10 AM

thank you for the invitation into your test lab.

-- making sawdust....

View bfd's profile


502 posts in 4256 days

#4 posted 04-24-2008 03:13 AM


This piece is simply beautiful! This looks like it belongs in the De La Spada catalog! Is that top a two piece long grain glue up? Man this is nice. Do you have a shot of the underside showing the alum.? Seems like a great idea.

View SPHinTampa's profile


567 posts in 4134 days

#5 posted 04-24-2008 03:29 AM

Cool design.

-- Shawn, I ask in order to learn

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4271 days

#6 posted 04-24-2008 03:36 AM


This is a beautiful bench. You executed a nice design on this project.
Thanks for the post.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View FritzM's profile


106 posts in 4261 days

#7 posted 04-24-2008 03:52 AM

thanks all.

bfd: Here is a shot of the bottom. it’s probably bad form, but i typically don’t pay as much attention to the bottom as I do the visible surfaces…... so, i’m a little ashamed to show the “undercarriage” but I hope it helps. I routed an 1/8” groove (angle thickness) x 48” (angle length) deep enough to accept one leg of the angle. drilled and countersunk for #6×1/2” skrews and installed wih no adhesives. The top is 4 pieces, two wider in the center (with the sap wood) and two narrower on the outside.

jjohn: I weight about 200lbs and it flexes about 1/2” at the center. The addition of the angles made quite a difference. Before they were installed, it flexed about an inch and a half and the legs splayed out about 1/2”.

-- Fritz Oakland, Ca (dedicated to my other hobby)

View Dusty56's profile


11850 posts in 4137 days

#8 posted 04-24-2008 04:20 AM

I love walnut and this is an awesome design you have made…I hope it stays together for you : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View moonroc's profile


44 posts in 4136 days

#9 posted 04-24-2008 04:37 AM

Less is More. Beautiful Work

-- Richard

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4548 days

#10 posted 04-24-2008 05:19 AM

FRITZ! I love this piece!

Thanks for the technical info on the flex. It sagged more under load than I would have guessed.

Great Modern Design And Great Work!

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View bfd's profile


502 posts in 4256 days

#11 posted 04-24-2008 05:29 AM

Hi Fritz,

Thanks for the visual and further explanation. I think your solution of the alum L bracket is a good one and very clean the way you routed the wood so that it sits flush with the bottom. I really like the fact that you made the decision to use and highlight the sap wood. I think it adds to the natural beauty of the piece.

View SPHinTampa's profile


567 posts in 4134 days

#12 posted 04-24-2008 06:17 AM

This is a great piece.

If this is a prototype and you decide to do a second version, I have a question.

Rather than screwing the 1/2” metal strips across the bottom, could you run two grooves 1/8” wide and 1/2” deep lengthwise in underside and then epoxy the metal strips vertically into the grooves? Vertically, the metal offers more strength against bowing. (stealing the idea from Wally Kunkle – Mr SawDust)

I am curious if you think that it would work. I have always used plywood for large surfaces and don’t know as much about how to compensate for wood movement. One possible hang up might be the wood movement in the walnut plank causing cracks/warping when restrained by the metal bar.

-- Shawn, I ask in order to learn

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 4445 days

#13 posted 04-24-2008 08:14 AM

I too like the sap center on this piece and the finger joints look nice and tight…

I’ll keep my fingers crossed on the cross grain construction…I know you don’t want it to crack, but that still wouldn’t ruin the great aesthetic you have there!

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Bill Akins's profile

Bill Akins

425 posts in 4147 days

#14 posted 04-24-2008 02:20 PM

I love the bench. I have an old slab of walnut my father acquired from an old workshop and has set arounf in his workshop for years. Its about that size but about 2 inches thick. I now know what to do with it. Great work!

-- Bill from Lithia Springs, GA I love the smell of sawdust in the morning.

View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1141 posts in 4440 days

#15 posted 04-24-2008 03:22 PM

Love this Fritz, very nicely executed.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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