butterflies on live edge walnut slab

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Forum topic by Shozzy posted 09-02-2016 06:02 AM 1417 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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16 posts in 2333 days

09-02-2016 06:02 AM

Topic tags/keywords: yew walnut live edge maple slab table butterfly dutchman resource question joining

hey everyone. Looking for some honest opinions on a live edge walnut slab I have. Both ends have a decent size split about 14” long. The slab was cut by a family friend, it has been kiln dried and stored properly for several years. I am going to butterfly these splits but can’t decide on 2 or 3 butterflies on each end. I have attached a photo of the slab with my paper butterfly templates, one with 2 per and another with three, thoughts/preferences please! Also the slab is just over 1.5 inch thick, how thick would you recommend? I’ve never used them before. I have narrowed it down to two choices for wood, maple, (curly or not?), or some yew wood I have, I am limited to 1/2” deep for the yew. the slab is unfinished it was just wiped with mineral spirits in the photos, it will either become the top of a bench or hall table when finished. thanks for all the help

10 replies so far

View Tabletop's profile


139 posts in 1348 days

#1 posted 09-02-2016 07:01 AM

Beautiful piece of wood! Count one vote for 3 bow ties. I’m no expert on them but from what I’ve read they don’t have to be that deep. 1/2” sounds good for the job. I’ve read where some use 1/4 ties but I guess it depends on the wood and the size of the crack. I’m sure some real experts on the subject will give you much better advice. Have fun and be safe.

View DirtyMike's profile


637 posts in 1502 days

#2 posted 09-02-2016 07:24 AM

I would use 3 per end, I think 1/2 deep would be acceptable that slab. good luck.

nightguy in 3,2,

View Robert's profile


3598 posts in 2081 days

#3 posted 09-02-2016 12:18 PM

Those are some HUGE cracks.

Butterflies, yes, but I might also consider a recessed bolt on the underside (like they join coutertops with).

Are you going to fill with epoxy?

Be prepared for it to continue moving.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View JayT's profile (online now)


6353 posts in 2812 days

#4 posted 09-02-2016 12:36 PM

I think three would look better, as well.

-- - In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is.

View Halc's profile


146 posts in 2203 days

#5 posted 09-02-2016 12:51 PM

I think an odd number is usually more pleasing to the eye, so I would use three. With three there would be less open space between butterflies than there would be with two. It’s a little more work, but I don’t think you would regret it when the project is finished.

View KelleyCrafts's profile


4093 posts in 1340 days

#6 posted 09-02-2016 02:58 PM

I like 3 as well.

-- Dave - - pen blanks - knife scales - turning tools

View jumbojack's profile


1689 posts in 3225 days

#7 posted 09-02-2016 04:29 PM

I too am going with three as the count. I would however make them all a bit longer. They look just a shade short, like an additional 3/16 maybe 1/4.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View Shozzy's profile


16 posts in 2333 days

#8 posted 09-02-2016 06:17 PM

thanks everyone, three it is!

View GregTP's profile


63 posts in 1544 days

#9 posted 11-25-2016 03:00 AM

Another vote for three. Definitely go with the progressively diminishing size for each, your mock up looks great.

-- From exercise machine warning label: "Step ladders can cause injury and even death; the ROM machine is more dangerous than a stepladder"

View Shozzy's profile


16 posts in 2333 days

#10 posted 11-10-2017 06:16 AM

Took forever to get going but finally completed it. Had a welder friend make the legs.

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