Chameleon coffee table

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Project by LMJ posted 12-27-2014 01:04 AM 600 views 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My wife is a chameleon fanatic. We have those things all around the house so I thought I would give this a go. This little project started about 2 years ago when I got the wild hair to try my hand at an inlay project. Once I got started, things went pretty well for a while. It took me about 3 months to figure out the pattern and exactly how to cut out the pieces and make things fit together properly (way too much travel for work during that time and had to get my bearings each time I set to it). The body and tail are made of redheart, yellowheart, and purpleheart wood and the feet are birdseye maple. The background is Brazilian Rosewood veneer I picked up at a swap meet.

The rest of the project is made of cherry. The top has a 1/4” recess for glass and came together quite well. The bottom was just one of those brain farts that I regularly have out in the shop while flying by the seat of my pants. It turned out well, no matter how hard I tried to screw things up. My wife is also a dark wood person so I used a dark brown stain to match it up with the rest of the wood in the adjoining kitchen and the entertainment center. Several coats of oil & urethane and a couple rounds of paste wax later, it was finally done. It’s actually been in the house since May but I have been just swamped with too many other things to do to get it posted.

I learned a lot with this one. First and foremost, shop safety. I just so happened to take the tips off my index and middle fingers on my right hand due to VERY POOR practices on the jointer. I was actually working on a different piece for a charity event and just didn’t safely use my tool. It took about 6 months to fully heal but they are both back now – still numb on the very tips but looking normal. I also learned the value of a card scraper. It is amazing what you can do with that thin piece of metal when it’s properly honed.

I am in the process of making a companion end table and debating over the inlay once again. We’ll see what I come up with when it happens. ;-)


-- Just another day in paradise.

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