Obligatory cutting board post.

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Project by danofpaco posted 03-26-2014 07:50 PM 1788 views 3 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Yes I know they have been done, but I wanted to add it to my projects page anyways. Sorry! Walnut and hard maple, made as a birthday present for my dear mother. Thanks obviously to Marc for the design and the instruction.

Since these have been done a hundred times, I’ll add in my learning experiences. The first cutting board I made for my wife ended up about half this size – because I neglected to account for planer snipe and had to trim a bunch off. This time around I made sure to account for snipe in my original cut lengths, and then opt to belt / RO sand the final glue up instead of sending it through the planer. It takes a loooong time! Man, a drum sander would be a nice addition to the tool set!

Second learning experience – if you forget to cap your glue, boy does it set up fast the next day! On a related note, anyone have any tips for clearing out a GluBot of some half-set glue? It set up so fast that I had a really difficult time aligning the stripes once the faces were pressed together.

Last, and this would have helped with stripe alignment in the final glue up, I should have prepared some cauls to hold all of the pieces in alignment widthwise on the final glue up. I had some to keep it flat, but not square. This resulted in several compounding minor misalignments in the final piece – so much so that the top and bottom rows are about 1/8 in off on the ends when I trimmed the board square. You can’t really tell unless you’re looking for it. I opted not to point it out to my mother.

Finish was several coats of mineral oil. -Oh, one last learning experience! Be sure to plan for a few days between applying the last mineral oil coat and the giving of the gift! Mine was still weeping oil slightly when you’d touch it, despite sitting in my shop in front of a fan and heading out several times the day before to give it several buffings. My last oiling was probably about 36 hours before it had to be wrapped up and we headed out to see her. It wasn’t soaking wet, but where you’d run your hand on it, little streaks of oil would appear.

Thanks for looking, have a great day!

-- Dan :: Minnesota

6 comments so far

View bobasaurus's profile


3681 posts in 4064 days

#1 posted 03-26-2014 10:53 PM

Nice-looking cutting board, well done. I’d recommend using a long open-time glue like Titebond 3… gives you more time on glue ups. I wish I had a drum sander for things like this too. Next cutting board I build I’m going to try using a cambered jack plane to get it flat then RO sand, as my belt sanding attempts always come out wonky. If it doesn’t work well in end grain, maybe a LA jack with lighter cuts.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View danofpaco's profile


118 posts in 2797 days

#2 posted 03-26-2014 11:01 PM

@bobasaurus – yeah on the Titebond 3! I was kicking myself because literally days earlier I picked up my first gallon of it – I was sick of the stress of glue-up time and thought to myself, “I’m gonna start using TB3 for awhile until I get better at this whole glue up thing!” Despite having TB3 sitting right there, and noticing that I left the cap off my glue bottle (TB2) from the night before, I went ahead and started the glue up anyway. Silly, silly man.

I’m just getting into bench planes, I’ve picked up an almost complete set of older Stanleys (still need a #7) but they are of the “got on Craigslist and need a little love” variety. I was in the process of fettling them when I started this project, so they weren’t quite ready to help me out – but yeah – that was another thought, “If only my planes were ready I might not have to sit here for another two hours sanding.”

-- Dan :: Minnesota

View Dusty56's profile


11859 posts in 4568 days

#3 posted 03-27-2014 01:26 AM

Nice looking board : )

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

View JimRochester's profile


573 posts in 2494 days

#4 posted 03-30-2014 09:08 PM

Came out very nice. I’m curious about your using the planer after the final glue up. No worry about tearing it apart? I once ruined a board and screwed up my planer trying that. Also I have a drum sander which is a must have for cutting boards in my book. However purpleheart burns like crazy in a drum sander no matter how little I tried to take off. I also used cauls for the lineup as well as the flats because they do have a tendency to creep a bit after clamping.

-- Schooled in the advanced art of sawdust and woodchip manufacturing.

View danofpaco's profile


118 posts in 2797 days

#5 posted 03-30-2014 09:20 PM

Hey Jim – I must have been lucky – the only other end grain board I’ve made I sent through my DW734 after final glue-up and it came out just fine. Very light passes of course. Planer and board survived without incident and left a surface that just needed a final sanding. I have read horror stories though…

Thanks for your comments!

-- Dan :: Minnesota

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3055 days

#6 posted 04-01-2014 03:48 PM

Looks great and well made. I’m sure your mom will like it and can use it for the kitchen.

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