Unique black walnut coffee table help

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Forum topic by JL619 posted 05-09-2019 11:30 PM 320 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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6 posts in 74 days

05-09-2019 11:30 PM

Topic tags/keywords: slab black walnut bark coffee table joining finishing

Hi all, first time posting here. I just received a great black walnut slab, maybe a cookie of a huge branch. Either way I am making into a coffee table with iron legs. The owner cut it 2 years ago and took great care to preserve it with wax to slow drying and avoid splits or blowouts. The bark however, which gives it much character is not attached on the lower 2/3 . The top point is very secure. How might I best keep the bark bonded and stable? Epoxy? Wood glue w. Finish nails? I just want to ensure the bark stays and looks natural as if it never separated. ALSO, wondering about what problems I could run into with these methods overtime. All suggestions are welcome please. I want this beautiful table to last! Note; aprx. 32×18x 3.25 inches thick

3 replies so far

View TungOil's profile


1273 posts in 916 days

#1 posted 05-09-2019 11:49 PM

Personally, I’d take the bark off. It’s only going to fall off eventually anyway.

But if you want to keep it, I’d suggest epoxy. No nails, they won’t do anything and will show. Tape it on good while the epoxy dries.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View CarlosInTheSticks's profile


395 posts in 793 days

#2 posted 05-10-2019 12:10 AM

I would agree with TungOil, remove the bark altogether, don’t know if intentional but the back end is already cut off which will set the rest of the piece off. Unless you encase it all in thick epoxy or liquid plastic it will always be a problem with crumbling on those delicate edges.

A rich piece of wood like that will make an outstanding piece without the bark.

-- "There are no utopias, chaos theory reigns, anyone who says different is selling you something"

View JL619's profile


6 posts in 74 days

#3 posted 07-01-2019 11:40 AM

Late response, but thank you for your recommendations. I did take all the bark off and could not be happier with the outcome. Here is a finished picture of this amazing grain!

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