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Rustic Construction Lumber Coffee Table

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Project by TObenhuber posted 09-01-2015 01:28 AM 1591 views 4 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I am very excited about how this project turned out. I bought 5 SPF 2×6 from the big box store. They were very white in color so not exactly sure what they were.

I started by ripping the lumber down to 2.5” strips and being very picky on which parts of the lumber made it in the top. I then laminated the top together. The lower shelf was constructed in exactly the same fashion.

The top rails were mortise and tenoned to the legs and the lower shelf is held in place by half laps. The legs are laminated to make them 2.5”x2.5.”

The finish is a stain, mineral spirits, and polyacrylic wiped on with a sponge. The first coat was tung oil and mineral spirits. The next 5 or 6 coats (lost count) were 1/3 tung oil/stain(till I got the color I wanted), 1/3 mineral spirits, and 1/3 polyacrylic. Overall I think there was minimal blotching and a generally even color.

Overall goal/experiment for the project was to enjoy building it and sell it to help save up for a thickness planer. This is the part I was excited about, the guy who bought it was so impressed with the quality which made me to excited. I suppose the quality for the price was really good for only $160. I was super excited to know someone would buy my project and am now about half was through the same table from the money received.

The next one I am building out of 2×12 douglas fir and I am being more picky using only the quarter sawed sections. I will post the next one which is turning out really good as well.

Thanks for reading.





14 comments so far

View PhillipRCW's profile

PhillipRCW

386 posts in 727 days


#1 posted 09-01-2015 02:51 PM

I really like this. So many people are building with construction grade lumber, but nobody seems to be selective about it, nor do they clean up the edges. It’s all about those ana white plans they found on pinterest. I love the color too. Turned out really well. I was asked to do a farm table out of construction grade lumber. I’ve put it off quite a while, but I think I might go ahead and knock it out now. I’ll have to try your finishing method on it.

-- Phillip- Measure twice, cut onc.... Hey look, it's rustic.

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#2 posted 09-01-2015 03:35 PM

Thanks for the complement, I really appreciate it. Still very excited.

I would definitely recommend looking in the 2×12 rack. I picked 2×12x12 Douglass Fir for the second one and the wood is really pretty now that its in the process of being cleaned up. Warning, based on my calculations its about 50% more expensive than the SPF 2×4x8 but the quality is in the tighter quarter sawn grain. There is also considerable waist when you cut out the tree cores. I would just shuffle through the 2×4 and compare the amount of quarter sawn material in the 2×12 rack. You will immediately see what I mean.

The finish has Minwax Early American, Polycrylic, Mineral Spirits (I liked the one that says its green, its also cheaper), and I plan to use linseed oil next time in the proportions mentioned above. Its important to do the first coat or two with no stain in it. Try to saturate it so the next couple coats don’t go dark as fast when you add the stain to the mix. If you are worried about. Check it out on some scrap cut offs which will be plentiful if you use the 2×12s.

Again, thanks for the complement.

View Paul M's profile

Paul M

95 posts in 765 days


#3 posted 09-01-2015 08:55 PM

Both the construction and the finish look great. I am just beginning woodworking, so most of my work is with construction lumber. This gives me confidence that it can be cleaned up real nice. I’m going to have to try some staining experiments as you described.

Also, are you sure its not a fancy workbench? It looks quite sturdy.

-- Paul M

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#4 posted 09-02-2015 12:11 AM

Thanks Paul, Trust me. I am the definition of low budget woodworker. It was nice to receive some money that I didn’t have to ask my wife for. A pain I think many of us feel.

New woodworker should still be in my title. I started about 2 years ago and have been deployed twice with the Navy for a total of about 8 months. Stick with it and build your tools slowly. As you go you will figure out what you need. Power tools like tablesaw and chopsaw, look through craigslist frequently. There are some pretty good deals on used 1970 & 1980 cast iron contractor saws for about $100-$200 and a chop/miter saw is a chop miter saw for less than $100. The table saw I have still fits that description and I started with a $30 old craftsman sliding radial arm miter saw which served me very well till I upgraded for a 10” Hitachi (non sliding to save a few bucks). Building up your technique can you help over come some of the inaccuracies of those tools till you upgrade. If you end up upgrading at all. Good luck dude and if you have questions. Just shoot them my way I can point you in the direction of low budget woodworking that is still very enjoyable.

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#5 posted 09-02-2015 01:44 AM

Also if you are interested I have the coffee table in sketchup if you would like me to send it to you.

This is what it looks like in the plan.

http://s909.photobucket.com/user/Travis_Obenhuber/media/Coffee%20Table%20Plans_zpskcos7pu0.jpg.html

View Richard's profile

Richard

1898 posts in 2153 days


#6 posted 09-03-2015 07:46 PM

The table looks really good and just proves you can make good stuff without breaking the Bank for the wood.
What do you do in the Navy ? I spent 9 years as a MM / Hole Snipe

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#7 posted 09-03-2015 08:11 PM

Thanks for the complement.

Navy, I flew P-3s. The P-3 Navy is a very different world from the rest.

View Matt's profile

Matt

137 posts in 1345 days


#8 posted 09-03-2015 10:54 PM

The finish looks great. I’m building a kitchen table from yellow pine soon and will take note of your finishing process. In fact, it looks very much like that color my fiance wants for our table.

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#9 posted 09-03-2015 11:19 PM

Very cool dude!!!

I started finishing a second coffee table today with the just oil coats. I ended up using two coats because it just sucked it right up. Using this meathor the color intensity is pretty controllable as long as the first coat or two is without stain. Also helps with blotching. Make sure you get the wood good an saturate on the first coat. Maybe adding a little extra to the end grain because that usually absorbs fast. This way the next couple coats don’t darken as fast.

Then on the 3rd+ coats, the 1/3 with the stain can be 50% stain 50% oil. That part isn’t an exact science. I usually don’t end up pulling out measuring cups but my containers have some lines. I use those to just rough measure. As some cooks/cheifs say, “You know. To taste.” :) If it doesn’t darken fast enough you could always splash a little more stain.

Just a suggestion I saw on the wood whisperer. On the last coat or two consider making the polycrylic percentage higher to increase the water resistance. I usually increase the polycrylic on the last coat. for that reason.

Good luck with the finishing and hope to see if on here.

View Matt's profile

Matt

137 posts in 1345 days


#10 posted 09-04-2015 02:16 AM

One more thing, do you sand between coats?

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#11 posted 09-04-2015 10:18 AM

In short, I try to be done sanding before hand. Raise the grain with some damp cloth and give it another go with your 220 either by hand or in the palm sander.

I usually only go 60 to flatten with my cheap random orbital Sander and Harbor Freight smoothing plane, then 100 with the ROS and then 220 by hand or in the palm Sander. Raise the grain and wipe one more time with 220. Usually feels pretty nice after that. Then apply finish as described above. Give it a go.

So what I have found is with this oily finish it gums up the sand paper pretty quick. Probably because I don’t let it dry long enough but I have tried it a couple times sanding the next day with the same results. Maybe giving it a longer dry time like 48 to 72 hours but I’m always into much of a rush. I do know it does dry eventually but it takes a long time then sanding would probably be possible.

View Richard's profile

Richard

1898 posts in 2153 days


#12 posted 09-04-2015 07:39 PM



Thanks for the complement.

Navy, I flew P-3s. The P-3 Navy is a very different world from the rest.

- TObenhuber


Oh yes an Airdale that explains a lot of stuff. I spent my last 3 years at Moffett Field as Base Police and my brother in law spent 8 years there in VP-31 / VP-19 as an AO .

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1055 days


#13 posted 09-04-2015 07:47 PM

You got me.

View Richard's profile

Richard

1898 posts in 2153 days


#14 posted 09-04-2015 07:55 PM


You got me.

- TObenhuber

At least your not a BUBBLE HEAD. Those guys have no concept of the term Design Failure , Subs are after all Designed to go Down And come back UP. At least Planes can Glide.

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