|Project by Jim Kuehl||posted 07-19-2016 04:51 PM||1106 views||3 times favorited||9 comments|
So I’ve been a lurker on this site for some time – hanging back, admiring the work of others, using it as inspiration, but not contributing much. Time to post something.
About 2 years ago my brother-in-law was able to get me this black walnut log. Of course the wife said “what are you going to do with THAT?”. Of course my reply was “I’ll think of something”. So I went about having it cut, stacking it lovingly in the basement and waiting. And Waiting. And waiting some more. I had some 4/4, 5/4, and 6/4. I always heard the rule of thumb for air drying was 1 year per inch. The countertop was 6/4 and it wasn’t dried 1 1/2 years… but so far no movement.
Anyways, I bought a lake cabin about a year ago, and the wife decided that the first needed project was kitchen cabinets… and my mind went directly to the walnut. To the basement I went, turning rough sawn boards into finished lumber. I quickly learned that is a project unto itself!! I’d bet that 25% of my time on this entire project was spent planing and jointing rough board into finished lumber, and I have a new respect for that process. I’ve attached a picture of my raw material, on the trailer and ready to go.
As you can see I was very lucky to find that the lumber I ended up with was nicely figured, resulting in in a beautiful end product. I spent a ton of time on this project but in the end, I think most of the beauty comes from the wood itself. As for finishing I went with 2-3 coats of shellac on the carcasses, face frames, doors and drawers. I really like using it because it dries so quickly and you can easily take out any imperfections with minimal time investment. On the countertop I used tung oil and wet sanding to smooth it out. Final 2 coats on the top is satin finish Arm-R-Seal.
Overall I’m very pleased with how this turned out. There are a few imperfections but my heart is at peace with them. See what you think.
Jim (former lurker)