Bubinga Mission-Style Bed Bench

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Project by Mottom posted 09-19-2007 10:34 PM 2961 views 4 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My wife and I are both short; neither can sit on the bed and put on our socks easily. My wife pointed out the difficulty and encouraged me to do something about it.

On a trip to a local wood store, she spotted a slab of Bubunga that she really liked, purchased it, and told me to get cracking. Darn, ordered to go play in the shop – would any believe that I fought that request?

I cut the end lights and mortises with a plywood template and router. The bench has 2 stringers and a stretcher joined by through mortises and tennons. I had wanted to add ebony pins to the tennons, but the wife thought they’d look too busy (next time I won’t ask, I’ll just do it). The bench was filled and sanded; it is finished in 5 coats of danish oil and then paste wax.

I learned that Bubinga is bloody heavy and dulls every tool you use. I’ll think twice before using it again.

-- A novice at the craft and loving every minute!

14 comments so far

View CharlieM1958's profile


16274 posts in 4218 days

#1 posted 09-19-2007 10:52 PM

It came out great!

I like how you cut out the sides to give the impression of slats.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View lclashley's profile


244 posts in 4113 days

#2 posted 09-19-2007 11:55 PM

I agree. Awesome sides!

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 4176 days

#3 posted 09-20-2007 12:47 AM

“Too busy!” she says. Did she choose the bed cover? Now that’s too busy. LOL

When she’s not around, add the Ebony wedges – this piece just calls out for them.

Very nice work. Even though you referred to them in your description, I didn’t notice the cut-out slats until Charlie pointed them out.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View Dano's profile


222 posts in 4031 days

#4 posted 09-20-2007 01:17 AM

Ah, bubinga, pretty isn’t it! I like the pseudo mission style of the ends, what a great idea. I got to admit that thinking like this has taught me so much here.

-- Dan in Central Oklahoma, Able to turn good wood into saw dust in the blink of an eye!

View wwnovice's profile


104 posts in 4185 days

#5 posted 09-20-2007 01:19 AM

Beautiful job. Great workmanship and beautiful wood. For the record – I don’t believe you fought your wife’s request to make it :-)

-- John

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4160 days

#6 posted 09-20-2007 01:23 AM

dang this is nice!!!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View TomFran's profile


2957 posts in 3993 days

#7 posted 09-20-2007 01:55 AM

Really nice looking bench! Great craftsmanship too.

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View Napaman's profile


5526 posts in 4076 days

#8 posted 09-20-2007 06:42 AM

very cool… i like the wood…sorry that it was hard on the tools…

-- Matt--Proud LJ since 2007

View mot's profile


4911 posts in 4036 days

#9 posted 09-20-2007 09:01 AM

I agree, a little contrast with the wedges will make a beautiful piece extra special. Great bench.

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Mark A. DeCou's profile

Mark A. DeCou

2009 posts in 4405 days

#10 posted 09-21-2007 01:10 AM

very nice. I’ve never used Bubinga.

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

View Karson's profile


35121 posts in 4400 days

#11 posted 09-21-2007 06:04 AM

One fantastic bench. Your wife has the eye for lumber also. You ought to send her out all the time to pick the boards.

She made a great choice there.

But she blew it on the pegs.

My wife tells me not to make the new kitchen cabinets too dark.

So I’m going to make them out of Cherry and let them age before her eyes and she will never notice it.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Marge's profile


145 posts in 3953 days

#12 posted 09-22-2007 03:04 AM

I also vote for the wedges, let your wife know they are like eye makeup – they will highlight the beauty that is already there.

-- Marge, Colorado

View Greg Mitchell's profile

Greg Mitchell

1381 posts in 4068 days

#13 posted 09-24-2007 12:49 AM

Beautiful wood. I like the design also.

-- Greg Mitchell--Lowell,

View mcoyfrog's profile


4145 posts in 3594 days

#14 posted 08-22-2008 03:41 AM

Nice bench, i love bubinga but yes its hard to work with…

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

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