Maple tables from the scrap pile.

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Project by Natalie posted 01-16-2013 07:18 AM 2986 views 6 times favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

During my earlier woodworking days I lived in Port Angeles, Washington, and there was a saw mill just outside of town that specialized in cutting figured maple and old growth spruce. They would find amazing figured maple and cut it into 8 inch by 24 inch blanks that were 8-quarter thick. Then they would split them into a book-matched set. They would sell these to guitar and violin making companies. However, if the wood had the slightest imperfection they would toss it into the scrap pile! Many people collected it and used it for fire wood!

This explains why I have a shop full of wood. I would collect these book matched sets by the truck load and I still have a huge collection of them waiting to be something. I have made dozens of these tables and sold them at a local gallery, mostly to tourists who came through town to take the ferry over to Victoria. They were small enough that people could often take them with them, but I did end up shipping quite a few of them.

Many times the blanks had not been split into the book-matched set so they were still 8 quarter thick and I could use those to make a set of legs. I usually used Cherry for the table skirt because I liked the contrast, but sometimes I would also use Cherry for the legs.

In the last photo you can see that I attached to tops with buttons, which is how I do all my table tops.

I also collected similar blanks of old growth spruce from the scrap pile and will eventually post a project I made using some of the spruce.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

27 comments so far

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4352 days

#1 posted 01-16-2013 11:17 AM

That is beautiful maple! And you’ve made some fantastic tables with it. When I first started carving gunstocks, I bought a load of maple from a dealer that supplied guitar builders. He had a stack of rejected lumber that he sold for $1 a BFT! I wish I had some left.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4803 days

#2 posted 01-16-2013 11:22 AM

Ooooh so beautiful ! You did that spectacular wood proud with your table designs : )
Welcome to Lumberjocks , Natalie !

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

View michelletwo's profile


2795 posts in 4130 days

#3 posted 01-16-2013 11:23 AM

welcome to Lj’s..good to see another gal here. thanks for the story to your piece.

View Marianne's profile


19 posts in 3089 days

#4 posted 01-16-2013 12:15 PM

That is some beautiful wood! A great table!

-- "The things you take for granted...someone else is praying for..."

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30618 posts in 3453 days

#5 posted 01-16-2013 01:42 PM

Beautiful wood. Good project.

Welcome to LJ’s

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4418 days

#6 posted 01-16-2013 02:09 PM

i really like this whole project here, and the fact that you used wood that was discarded, the table are beautiful and i love the legs one there, really nice ..i look forward to seeing more of your work…keep it coming..grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View david38's profile


3518 posts in 3458 days

#7 posted 01-16-2013 02:22 PM

good looking table

View dee2's profile


277 posts in 3451 days

#8 posted 01-16-2013 02:51 PM

Beautiful tables. Love seeing the wood grain, very nice design. Hard to believe this wood was in a scrap pile at one time. I too love to scavenge!

-- Dee2, OH Aromatherapy....fresh cut wood!!

View BarbS's profile


2434 posts in 5200 days

#9 posted 01-16-2013 02:55 PM

I’m incredibly jealous of your scraps! Wonderful tables, Natalie, and Welcome to Lumbejocks!


View will delaney's profile

will delaney

332 posts in 3750 days

#10 posted 01-16-2013 03:01 PM

Wow! What a nice scraps pile you have. Very nice build and the combination of the Cherry and Maple is beautiful. I could always help you get rid of all those scraps :-)

View Natalie 's profile


369 posts in 3081 days

#11 posted 01-16-2013 03:36 PM

Thanks for the comments. Yeah, I feel guilty taking much credit for this project. The wood does the work for me. This is my passion and most of my projects start with a piece of wood that is begging to be honored.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

View UncleStumpy's profile


745 posts in 3428 days

#12 posted 01-16-2013 04:09 PM

I HAVE TO MOVE NEAR A SAWMILL, where they toss out stunning wood like this. It numbs my brain.
I’ve made several tables with bookmatched wood, but paid through the nose for the wood.
Really, really nice work!

-- "They don't want it perfect - they want it SPECIAL"

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 4155 days

#13 posted 01-16-2013 05:49 PM

Nice Wood !!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View a1Jim's profile


118162 posts in 4692 days

#14 posted 01-16-2013 06:05 PM

Wowsville great job,and great wood.


View Josh's profile


1234 posts in 3684 days

#15 posted 01-16-2013 07:56 PM

Scraptastic! Can’t beat the it!

-- Tree, wood, and box lover from Pennsylvania

showing 1 through 15 of 27 comments

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