Exercises in Artisanship #21: Rustic Renaissance Trestle Table: Part 4

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Blog entry by jjw5858 posted 07-11-2012 11:26 PM 1869 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 20: Rustic Renaissance Trestle Table: Part 3 Part 21 of Exercises in Artisanship series Part 22: Rustic Renaissance Trestle Table: Part 5 »

Hey friends, back here in the Old Time Wood Shop with some more exercises…..or,.... trouble to get into… This time it was setting up a top for my Rustic Renaissance Trestle Table.

After some mock ups of various boards to view thickness, width, etc. I finally decided to just give a go at working up a top with a thick piece of laminated construction pine. This would be all new territory for me….never did a table, never laminated together boards to make a top. Might as well get some shavings going and some new things learned for better or worse…

Back in my shop…..I live off a dirt road where you can see a deer, hear the birds, or watch a groundhog scurry about. I feel very lucky to have this small part of the world.

Handtool woodwork is a very Zen activity. I tune onto nature more these days….I used to blast Buddy Guy, SRV, or another one of my favs Doc Watson ( Bless his heart and may he rest in peace, Doc passed very recently) and although I still blast them…just in the truck now…lol, I find that tuning into nature I connect more with the process of constructing, creating and learning.

There is an inner peace that sort of grows within your spirit as you move through each task and take on each challenge. Of course with anything, sometimes peace goes all to hell…..lmao!

Of course it is also important to have motivation, those guru’s of the woodshop that make us all go….wow….did I just start doing this woodshop stuff last week?… So many of my LJ’S buddies, you guys and gals always amaze me with your talents, knowledge, and projects…I thank you so much for sharing them with me.
But more times than not our inspiration and motivation can also come from friends and family outside of the woodshop.

My girlfriend Jenn is an amazing person, she has the kindest soul I have ever known. She is a teacher of emotionally challenged kids from grades 1-12. Some of the children are in need of medication for mood swings and erratic behavior patterns, and many others have had a terrible upbringing and are involved in crime as early as 7 years old with little to no decent parenting at all.

With her talents, patience and skill Jenn has taken a fifth grade child that could barely read first grade material and in one years time managed to get that same student to be up to 5th grade level or better.

Jenn gets up everyday to make it a better day for one child out of hundreds that might have never had a chance to survive. That motivates me….and makes me as proud as the tallest pine trees. Amen.

Well hell, I guess it’s time to look at the mischief I am into now with this table deal…lol.

Come on in and let’s take a look friends!

Pic 1-2: Welll here is some big store pine to make for a good solid top….and some good sawing. As the great Jackie Gleason said…..and awayyyyy we go!

Pic 3-6: After cutting my boards to desired size I used a few various planes for evening out, smoothing and jointing the planks. Restored Jack plane, #3, and the always fun big dog # 4 1/2!

Pic 7: The jointing was not of superb quality but an honest first time effort…...I worked this down with testing and more planing until I finally said…..on with it!....stop fussing and let’s learn if this was good or not good….lol. Yelling at yourself sort of helps at certain times…

Pic 8-11: I felt fashioning 2 pieces of 1×2 across the glued bottom for extra support was in need, maybe more….but I went with this outfit for the current part of the build. You will see my Millers falls brace….first actual task using it… terrific. A fun story regarding that, if you are new to my work you can find that tale here

Pic 12-16: Ha….I feel like I am getting into some Japanese woodworking….where’s my buddy Mads? I got to the floor and then went on with getting these pieces attached. I set these up with a super accurate jig…..I call it the eyeball….lmao. No worries….I got my super duty Irish Spring Soap….the luck of the irish on meee side!

Pic 17: Back to shaving down the top…boy these planes are such hams….always calling for a pic…

Pic 18: Ok now for setting the stylings to the edges of my table top. Simply some tracing paper and a dream.
Pic 19: Working the lines down with the pinebeast bowsaw, yeeeeeeehaw!
Pic 20: The wonderful rewards working with pine….as the blade cut through this piece…..a heavenly aroma of deep scented pine escaped to momentarily fill the workspace…..nothing better!

Pic 21: This monster needed some more high tech jigs for holding her down…an old cherry cut top and scrap.

Pic 22-24: Ok..the cuts are still rough, but for this session it ended with a few mock -up pics once more to see where I am at. I wanted the entire piece to move from the feet up on through and back….a good amount more to do on this one…..but feels good seeing it and learning more too!

Well friends thats wraps this session up…as I said….. more to do and learn from!

Great grain ahead and remember to be good to one another!

Best regards,


-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

12 comments so far

View Bertha's profile


13525 posts in 2689 days

#1 posted 07-11-2012 11:29 PM

Oooooh yeeeeeaaaahhh! Wood porn at it’s finest. I didn’t even notice what you were building; I was just enjoying the building process;)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View ShaneA's profile


6928 posts in 2594 days

#2 posted 07-11-2012 11:36 PM

Table is looking good Joe. What type of finish are you going with?

View jjw5858's profile


1135 posts in 2598 days

#3 posted 07-12-2012 12:34 AM

Not sure yet ShaneA. Will be looking over some ideas soon though, thanks for looking in!

-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

View lysdexic's profile


5254 posts in 2619 days

#4 posted 07-12-2012 02:46 AM

Joe, you may be the happiest bloggers that I have come across. LOL. I really like your work. I am a fan of Doc Watson myself. keep up the good work.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

View nobuckle's profile


1120 posts in 2757 days

#5 posted 07-12-2012 11:16 AM

Great work Joe. The table looks great. And thanks for letting us look into your corner of the world.

-- Doug - Make an effort to live by the slogan "We try harder"

View Roger's profile


20928 posts in 2800 days

#6 posted 07-12-2012 11:53 AM

Very nice.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View mafe's profile


11725 posts in 3085 days

#7 posted 07-12-2012 02:19 PM

Jenn sounds like a wonderful woman, and you are then a lucky guy.
Fine table and shaves.
I never get tired of pine shaves…
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View Brit's profile


7374 posts in 2838 days

#8 posted 07-12-2012 03:25 PM

Keep these posts coming Joe. The table is looking great. I’ve still got them Deep River Blues over here. It is really getting to me now as I haven’t been able to do any woodworking or saw sharpening at all due to the constant rain. At the moment, I’m getting my fix from your excellent posts and those of other buddies.

Wet horses…

Wet trees…

Bare beaches…

Empty Workmate…

I think the sun might come out for a few hours tomorrow morning, so I’m going for it. LOL.

-- - Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View lysdexic's profile


5254 posts in 2619 days

#9 posted 07-12-2012 03:57 PM

Andy, that looks soggy. Lush, but soggy.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

View Mauricio's profile


7144 posts in 3147 days

#10 posted 07-12-2012 07:40 PM

Looking good Joe. Dan has shown some nice pieces in pine with just some Amber Shellac that I think looks really nice, might be worth a try.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View jjw5858's profile


1135 posts in 2598 days

#11 posted 07-13-2012 02:35 AM

Thanks friends, I sure appreciate the interest and ideas!

-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

View Dave's profile


11429 posts in 2836 days

#12 posted 07-13-2012 11:44 AM

Turn up SRV! And the the chips fly. Stevie is planing music, oh nice table and great blog.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

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