|Project by dustyal||posted 01-28-2009 07:01 PM||2595 views||5 times favorited||24 comments|
I’ve been hesitant in posting my first woodworking project.— a small plant table that my wife wanted. I am one of those intimidated beginners that Todd Clippinger mentions in his welcome video. So, go easy on me? I’m in awe of the work I see on this site.
My wife wanted a plant table of specific size and she “expressed desire” for me to use a piece of slab wood she picked up while visiting Mystic, Connecticut. The rough and ugly slab came from the wood the craftsman shipbuilders used when building the reproduction slave ship, Amistad. I had been “storing” this piece on the firewood pile for several years. Each year I’d bring it in and declare it to be that season’s Yule log. Annually, she would declare something different and back to the wood pile it would go. After a few years of that she chose to move it to her mother’s garage—for another six years of safekeeping.
So, lesson one in woodworking— if she wants it so, make it so, and leave it at that.
The legs are cherry—the top is from the slab. I made it a three point landing so it would be less inclined to rock. The slab chunk was actually easy to work and it has a very nice cherry-mahogany like look and colorization once a few layers are peeled away. I believe it is a African mahogany used in shipbuilding as a teak substitute. I only “smoothed” the top. Note, I didn’t say I flattened it. A straight edge will show that it is high along the edges and low in dead center. I call that “design intent.” When she waters the plants, the excess will run toward the center of the table and not off the table onto her hardwood floors.
Anyway, she is satisfied as it fits into the space where she needed it. I picked up many lessons learned and some simple skills that require more practice. It was a good first project… since nothing was square, flat, or plumb—thus mistakes made are not too obvious at first glance. I wish I had the insight from the Mason-Dixon woodworkers club before I had started! That’s a great group of helpful masters.
-- Al H. - small shop, small projects...