Thursday 7 March 2013

Dining table hardware & sunshine

Life is feeling pretty great these days. There are lots of balls being juggled, but all of it is glorious fun and very rewarding.

The dining table top has been coming along very nicely. It took a bit of figuring to come up with a hardware system that would be very strong and yet not detract from the underside of the table. It also had to be good knock-down hardware that could be taken apart easily and put back together. I opted to inlay pieces of bronze into the underside of the table with the expansion and contraction slots hidden for a cleaner look.

The machine screws are threaded into inserts in the underside of the table and into the top of the base. There is a piece of bronze at each corner of the top of the base and one in the middle of each end. The one in the middle is fixed to keep the top centered on the base.

This is what is visible from the underside of the table. I still need to countersink the exposed hole. The shape of the exposed end follows the curve in the tabletop.

With all the hardware fit, I was able to cut the perimeter of the top. I used a jig saw to rough cut it and then a router with a template. 

 The edges were contoured using planes and spokeshaves and then blended with sandpaper.

The inlayed hardware and threaded inserts provided a good opportunity for a creative finishing approach. I placed a maple bock in each of the inlay areas and drilled a hole that lined up with the threaded insert. These 2 blocks were then joined with a piece of scrap plywood and a fence was added so it would register on the top of my sawhorses.

This allowed me to apply finish to the underside of the table and then install this jig and flip the top over to apply finish to the other side.

Showing the underside of the table and the jig on the sawhorses.

I should be over this by now, but I am still always amazed at how transforming the first coat of finish is. And this figured walnut did not disappoint.

There was a point the other day where a sliver of sunlight was streaming through one of the main floor windows. It hit the end of the table top and the curl came alive. Amazing what sunshine does to curl!

Ball No.2 - some fun planes.

This A5 was an awful lot of fun for a few reasons. It has been a while since I have made an A5 and it felt 'new' again to make one. This A5 is also the last of the Mystery Rosewood sets and while I was sad to see it go, it was also great to know it was going to such a good home. This last set was a real pleasure to work with and I will miss this wonderful material.

The next plane is a K13a infilled with Desert Ironwood. I never get tired of working with this amazing material (although it does not smell so nice when working with it).

I managed to catch a bit of sapwood on the tip of the horn and one side of the handle. 


Blogger Richard Wile said...

Yes Konrad that table top is amazing and the method of attaching it to the base is truly unique - leave it to you... That walnut find was truly a once in a lifetime haul.

Of course those two planes look beyond spectacular, that Madagascar Rosewood is a joy to behold.

I do like that DIW handle, that would work on my next one!

Always enjoy reading your posts.


7 March 2013 at 11:54  
Blogger Unknown said...

I've revisited your dining chair build posts several times and the table looks fantastic. What final finish are you considering for the top? I have 3 young kids who abuse our tables - spilling things, dropping things, etc.

7 March 2013 at 13:28  
Blogger tsangell said...

Thanks so much for sharing the hardware you made for the dining table. I've been building one for my family and this is precisely the solution I have been looking for.

7 March 2013 at 14:40  
Blogger Kevin Brehon said...

Gotta love that creative clamping. And standing on the bench to work the ends of the table! Oh yeah, all that wood stuff is real nice too!;)

7 March 2013 at 22:45  
Anonymous Nick said...

Konrad the table is beautiful, but the K13 with ironwood; well that is just SEXY!

How did you finish the handle to give the figure such depth?

8 March 2013 at 07:02  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks Richard.

I will see what I can do in the handle department:)


8 March 2013 at 13:01  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Nathan,

The top (and chairs) are finished with my own mix of finish. It is 1/2 varnish (P&L38), 1/4 pure tung oil and 1/4" mineral spirits. The finish is wiped on. I will write a more detailed process once the table is finished.


8 March 2013 at 13:03  
Blogger Konrad said...

Tsangell - glad the hardware solution was helpful.


8 March 2013 at 13:04  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks Kevin. There have been a few occasions to stand on benches. It always feels odd for a few minutes but sometimes it is the best approach.


8 March 2013 at 13:05  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Nick,

The depth to the figure is likely the mixture of the finish and the fact that the first coat was heated up so it really penetrated into the wood. That and starting with highly figured wood:)


8 March 2013 at 13:06  
Blogger Tim Raleigh said...

That top looks fantastic. So do the legs.

2 April 2013 at 17:04  

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