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Rustic Quarter Sawn Construction Lumber Coffee Table

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Project by TObenhuber posted 09-15-2015 01:41 PM 2116 views 5 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Using knowledge gained from the previous build of this same coffee table I used a higher grade of construction lumber. I used the 2X12X12 boards from the BORG. I was very selective to find boards with the tightest grain patterns and most possible quarter sawn sections. I went into much greater detail of wood selection in my review. Link below.

http://lumberjocks.com/reviews/6122

The construction is the same as the last coffee table. I used mortise and tenon joints for the upper frame. I used half lapses to join the lower shelf in place. I also laminated the top and lower shelf with 3 to 4 inch strips of the best quarter sawn sections of the 2×12’s that I could. I think it turned out great. Hand planed and sanded out to 220 smooth. Chamfered the edges with my HF hand plane.

The things that I tried differently than the previous model. The lower shelf ended up having a split after cut to final dimensions. It didn’t reach the surface but I wanted to prevent it from getting bigger. So having see Bow Ties in wood working construction that is very old. I figured it was worth a shot. So that last picture is the finished Bow Tie. My goal is to sell this coffee table so I won’t figure out if it works or not but it was a good experience routing it out and trimming the edges with a chisel. I will definitely remember Bow Ties for future projects. I should have probably been more proud of it but I ended up hiding it on the bottom of the lower shelf. The table ended up looking cleaner that way.

The finish is exactly the same as the last one. I used a long oil finish using 1/3 Tung Oil, 1/3 polycrylic and 1/3 mineral spirits. I will probably end up doing another coat or two to get the table a little darker. Haven’t decided yet. The overall finish is mildly water resistant and I am very pleased with the finish quality as it is right now. For more details, I described it in pretty great detail in the comments of my last coffee table. Link below.

http://lumberjocks.com/projects/178594

Lastly, I learned about wood movement and moisture. I might try letting the wood dry a little more next time. Maybe… I assembled the table and the top must have moved. The next day after assembly, the table had a slight wobble. So I fixed it. I trimmed the legs by leveling the table and then measuring about a half inch from the surface up on the legs. Then the wobble was gone. Then I went to raise the grain and must have applied to much water. The wobble was back. I was a bit frustrated after that so I left it alone for about two days. Upon returning, the wobble was once again gone. Miracle. The table fixed itself. So far, the wobble is still gone and its nearly two weeks later.

For a few more pictures along the building process check out my website. If you enjoy what you see please like.
https://www.facebook.com/CreativeWoodworksHybla





15 comments so far

View Billy E's profile

Billy E

162 posts in 1540 days


#1 posted 09-15-2015 07:38 PM

Nice table but I’m confused over the finish. Isn’t Polycrylic water based?

-- Billy, Florence SC

View Ruffian998's profile

Ruffian998

6 posts in 614 days


#2 posted 09-15-2015 08:33 PM

So you just mix 1/3 Tung Oil, 1/3 polycrylic and 1/3 mineral spirits together in the same container to achieve that finish?

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1053 days


#3 posted 09-15-2015 10:55 PM

Yes, Polycrylic is water based. You have to stir or shake it up to mix it. The poly does eventually come out of solution in your container but then another shake or stir puts it right back.

No, I left out a step mentioned in my previous project. I added a stain. The 1/3 oil had stain after the first or second coat depending on how thirsty the wood is. I used Early American. The first coat is always 1/3 oil alone till I saturate the wood. The successive coats can be stain only or any mixture of stain to oil. For example,

Coat 1: 1/3 Tung Oil (Lineseed Oil), 1/3 poly and 1/3 mineral spirits.
Coat 2 or 3: 1/6 Tung Oil (Lineseed Oil), 1/6 Stain of choice, 1/3 poly and 1/3 mineral spirits.
Coat 3 to 6: 1/6 Tung Oil (Lineseed Oil), 1/6 Stain of choice, 1/3 poly and 1/3 mineral spirits until color of choice achieved.
Last 2 Coats: 1/4 Tung Oil (Lineseed Oil), 1/2 Poly, 1/4 mineral spirits. The oil might darken project slightly but color should remain close to where it was.

Let dry for a couple days dependent.

This is only an example and I never measure to precisely. I pour it roughly to the lines on my mason jar, mix it, then apply with a rag or sponge. This method does take a couple days but over all result is pretty even with minimal blotching. I highly recommend this method to you if you are just starting out. Its is very forgiving. Requires a bit of time but worth it. Leaves the project still feeling like wood at the end instead of like plastic. The up front cost might be high but it last for a couple projects. I have bought the quart stain and quart poly and gallon mineral spirits. It usually cost $60ish initially but has lasted through multiple coats on two coffee tables.

View Oldtool's profile

Oldtool

2373 posts in 1651 days


#4 posted 09-15-2015 11:10 PM

Nice table, very nice indeed. Like the crisp tenons, sharp corners, well made.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

5042 posts in 2607 days


#5 posted 09-15-2015 11:56 PM

Nice coffee table—very sturdy looking!

-- Dean

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1053 days


#6 posted 09-16-2015 12:36 AM

Thanks for the complements. I really appreciate it.

Yes, to serve as a conventional coffee table its probably over kill by a lot but I really like the heavy look.

View Grumpymike's profile

Grumpymike

1914 posts in 1775 days


#7 posted 09-16-2015 01:02 AM

I highly recommend this method to you if you are just starting out.

Tung Oil (Lineseed Oil),

TObenhuber … I don’t know what they are putting in your drinking water where you live, but I think you’d better move west.
First rule of woodworking and finishing, is Never, Never, Never, ... mix oil based product with water based product unless the oil is applied first and allowed to completely dry for like a week, Then you can top coat it with a water based polyurethane.
You say “Tung oil (lineseed oil)”. Out west here we have Tung oil, and then we have Linseed oil, and they are not the same as you indicate but they will give you about the same results.

Now for the new to woodworking group: When you make your mom that great foot stool, after sanding, apply Linseed oil or Tung oil to your work of art and let the piece sit till the oil is dry. Sand again with a 200 to a 400 grit and as you are sanding use the oil as a lubricant (The sanding dust in the oil will act like a filler) and wipe with a clean cloth and let it dry. ... Now apply the finish, use a rattle can of Shellac or Polly and apply several light coats.
Some of us old-timers still use this method.

I hope no one takes offence to this post, It is meant with the humor effect turned on … line seed, sheesh, or is that how they get all the lines on the highways???

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View Grumpymike's profile

Grumpymike

1914 posts in 1775 days


#8 posted 09-16-2015 01:07 AM

Oh by the way, that is a good lookin’ table, and looks strong enough to survive 7 teenagers. Kudos on the build.

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View Grumpymike's profile

Grumpymike

1914 posts in 1775 days


#9 posted 09-16-2015 01:09 AM

Oh by the way, that is a good lookin’ table, and looks strong enough to survive 7 teenagers. Kudos on the build.

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View DW833's profile

DW833

190 posts in 1343 days


#10 posted 09-16-2015 01:16 AM

I’m with Ruffian and Grumpymike on the finish. How could a water based and oil based finish mix so it would ever dry. Do any of the pictures include the table with finish on it? How long did it take to dry?

Also, as Grumpymike mentioned tung oil and linseed oil are not the same. However, I think that there were some linseed oil finishes that were sold as tung oil at one point. With some small amount of tung oil in it. Was Formby tung oil finish really linseed oil relabeled?

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1053 days


#11 posted 09-16-2015 01:34 AM

Grumpymike, Thanks for the insight. I might try that next time. Its turned out well so far so we will see. I will remember this if it start to give me problems.

Always appreciate the comments form “old-timers.”

View Ub1chris's profile

Ub1chris

85 posts in 840 days


#12 posted 09-16-2015 09:52 AM

The table looks very nice, but the way the bottom shelf is trapped is going to cause big problems when the wood starts moving.

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1053 days


#13 posted 09-16-2015 01:18 PM

Ub1chris or anyone with an opinion,

I did think about that and tried to pick all of the quarter/rift sawn sections out and minimize the pith as much as possible. Do you really think the movement will be that bad considering the movement should be mostly in the vertical direction? I could see more major problems if it were to move horizontal as in flat sawn boards. Again, trying to absorb everything I can to make the next project even better.

Thanks for all the comments.

View HappyHowie's profile

HappyHowie

325 posts in 1405 days


#14 posted 01-06-2016 12:19 PM

I was impressed with your tenons. Obviously you took a lot of care in cutting them…

-- --- Happy Howie

View TObenhuber's profile

TObenhuber

83 posts in 1053 days


#15 posted 01-07-2016 12:47 AM

Thanks!!! I appreciate the compliment. That’s one skill I am proud of.

I would love to say I have cut them by hand but that would be a lie. I have been cutting them on the tablesaw for a while now. For me, its very easy to get consistent, fast, and repeatable results. The mortises have been the harder part for me to keep clean but that is one of the reasons why I do blind mortise and tenons. I need to perfect my mortise technique still.

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