Marie's Table... A Marquetry Adventure #5: Getting the Legs Started.

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Blog entry by shipwright posted 07-24-2012 12:44 AM 3438 reads 1 time favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: The Marqueteur's Nightmare Part 5 of Marie's Table... A Marquetry Adventure series Part 6: Oooooh, Nice Legs! »

Back in the first part of this blog I posted this photo and said that the project was going to turn out quite like the “plan”. ... but this is a sketch of a leg and just a corner of a table so what goes? Well the answer is that the original idea here was to make a table with really cool legs. The ringed ball idea had just come to me from ??? who knows where but when I sketched it I liked it. Then I added the table and indicated lots of marquetry even on the curved parts.

So lets have a look at how the ringed balls came together. First I glued and squared up some Tubi stock and made a pattern for the copy lathe attachment that came with my old ShopSmith 10ER (1950).

This would produce balls exactly 1 3/4” diameter with 3/4” spindles on each end.

The piece in the lathe here is a bit of yellow cedar that I used as a trial piece.

This is the little gauge I used to check the accuracy of the balls and spindles. I left the balls just a hair oversize so the rings could be fitted to a flat surface.

Next I bored a 1 3/4” hole in a piece of arbutus with a forstner bit ….

...and chucked it on a slightly tapered spindle for turning.

These were easy enough to eyeball so I didn’t need the copier.

Back to the tubi balls. Next job was to mark the position of the rings and sand a little flat surface for the rings to mount on.

Here’s one with the ring all fitted up. The other is the dyed yellow cedar trial piece.

And here’s the set of four with a first thought prototype of the leg top.

That’s it for this one. Sorry I didn’t get farther but this was a very critical step in the process for me because it was the central feature around which the project was developed. I really wanted to get it right and it took a bit if time.

Next time I’ll finish up with the legs. I promise you’ll like them…........I hope.

Comments, critiques and questions…. Of course.

Thanks for looking in


-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

18 comments so far

View Roger's profile


21014 posts in 3347 days

#1 posted 07-24-2012 01:26 AM

Fa fa fannntastic!!

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

View peteg's profile


4435 posts in 3366 days

#2 posted 07-24-2012 01:42 AM

Paul, I just love the way you get your head around a project & this, of course, is why you always get it right,: ))

-- Pete G: If you always do what you always did you'll always get what you always got

View sras's profile


5246 posts in 3672 days

#3 posted 07-24-2012 01:45 AM

There’s some good thinking going on here! Nice job!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Schwieb's profile


1895 posts in 4004 days

#4 posted 07-24-2012 01:51 AM

I like what you’re doing here…....... Can’t wait to see where it goes from here

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 3157 days

#5 posted 07-24-2012 02:23 AM

shipwright this is awesome build and its looking beautiful ,cant wait to see it ,and you defiantly got it right

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 3465 days

#6 posted 07-24-2012 02:55 AM

The step at which you made the rings is the most outstanding part I’ve ever seen. Before when I’m on ship, I make washers by drilling holes and clamped them together by a threaded bar… then machine it. But yours… is much simpler because the cutting bit is the one being sharpenned to suit the need. I am thinking that other shape like ogee curves and sine waves can be done easily on your method.
Thanks for poosting.

-- Bert

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3621 days

#7 posted 07-24-2012 02:58 AM

What you turn out (pun intended) is simply incredible, Paul! I can’t wait to see the finished table!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

View tomd's profile


2212 posts in 4313 days

#8 posted 07-24-2012 04:14 AM

Nice work, very interesting. Can’t wait to see the next step, thanks for the views.

-- Tom D

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

23566 posts in 3649 days

#9 posted 07-24-2012 10:52 AM

Beautiful job making those pieces, Paul! The detail is what makes the final product! I saw the Shopsmith logo on the board under the Shopsmith. Is that your creation with marketry?..............................Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View SPalm's profile


5334 posts in 4425 days

#10 posted 07-24-2012 12:24 PM

Well that is just darn right clever.
I really looks like you are having fun.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Gumnut's profile


95 posts in 2701 days

#11 posted 07-24-2012 01:27 PM

Well that shows dedication or maybe OCD, ummm I will leave that for you to decide.
I can see you have a plan and I imagine you are always thinking of the development and evolving design.
The style is stunning and the execution is amazing so I am waiting with anticipation for the next steps.

All the best.

-- Peter, member of the Fine Woodwork Association

View shipwright's profile


8401 posts in 3341 days

#12 posted 07-24-2012 02:20 PM

Thanks for the comments everyone Jim, you can find that bit of router marquetry here.

Peter, Stubbornness maybe and OCD…........ yes a little.
I think that a little OCD is a good thing. I always hope my surgeon and my airline pilot have a touch of it.

Thanks again

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View rance's profile


4271 posts in 3704 days

#13 posted 07-24-2012 03:41 PM

I too like how you approach a project like this. I know it is just a series of steps, but some folks could get overwhelmed. Like me. Are you still gonna put that bead/trim around the top of the ball? I think it needs it. (but what do I know. :P ) It is coming along very nicely. I expect it will be a masterpiece by the time you are finished.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View Porchfish's profile


857 posts in 3076 days

#14 posted 07-24-2012 04:57 PM

Clever and gorgeous !

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View stefang's profile


16827 posts in 3877 days

#15 posted 07-24-2012 06:43 PM

Nice and logical step by step work. This will be a very unique and inspired piece when finished.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

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