End Grain cutting board

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Project by rockmolsen posted 10-30-2016 06:57 PM 1741 views 18 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is made with Walnut, Maple and Zebrawood. It seems that this combination of woods always looks good regardless of the project. A homemade cross-cut sled is used to cut the slices. The board is 12” W x 16” L x 1 1/2” H. I made the hand holds on the sides with a rabbiting bit on the router table using stop blocks on either side. Edges are eased over with a 1/8” round-over bit then sanded with a ROS from 60 up to 220. Finished with several coats of mineral oil then a bees wax and mineral oil mix that I melt in a small crockpot. 1 Part bees wax to 4 parts mineral oil. The bees wax helps to seal/fill the pores in both the Walnut and Zebra. Anti-slip rubber feet are added to the bottom. The board was originally going to be 1/2” longer but I dropped it during the sanding process and damaged a corner pretty bad. Back to the tablesaw sled to remove the damaged slice.

I know there are differences of opinion on this topic but …......

I run the end grain boards through my Delta surface planer with every board that I do. If you notice from the 5th photo, I always add a waste strip to each end of the board. This combats any tear-out on the edges of the board. Using a scraper I remove the excess glue after about 2 hrs. Then take very small passes and remove very little material at a time. My cutter heads are also very sharp. To date I have never had an issue with this method.

This was a 2 plus day shop project, Part of Friday evening, most of Saturday and a good part of Sunday. I always let the glue ups sit overnight. Thanks for looking

-- Rick --------The measure of who we are is what we do with what we have.

9 comments so far

View John's profile


1310 posts in 1468 days

#1 posted 10-30-2016 07:40 PM

Awesome job Rick, I’ve got to try a cutting board some day. The light in your shop photo really shows the wood contrasts.

-- John, Sunshine Coast, BC, Canada.

View WillliamMSP's profile


1084 posts in 1803 days

#2 posted 10-31-2016 03:52 AM

Very nice – you did a spectacular job with the pattern.

-- Practice makes less sucky. (Bill, Minneapolis, MN)

View majuvla's profile


13353 posts in 3066 days

#3 posted 10-31-2016 05:24 AM

You are right about combination of those woods, but you put them together on that way so they realy look awesome. Beautiful shadow-light play.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View TexasToddT's profile


54 posts in 1119 days

#4 posted 10-31-2016 07:48 AM

Nicely done, Rick! What an eye-catching mix of species. I have the typical 3 species (maple, walnut, and cherry) on hand and am trying to decide on a pattern. I think you’ve helped me out with answer. Cherry will not provide the same “pop” to the board, but it’ll have to do. Thanks for sharing!

-- TT

View rockmolsen's profile


278 posts in 1772 days

#5 posted 10-31-2016 12:16 PM

Yes Cherry is also a great combo for cutting boards. As far as the pattern is concerned I just randomly cut the widths without any plan so its always exciting to see then end result.

-- Rick --------The measure of who we are is what we do with what we have.

View Roger's profile


20952 posts in 3002 days

#6 posted 10-31-2016 08:38 PM

Wood combos are awesome.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View fogbow's profile


71 posts in 784 days

#7 posted 11-01-2016 01:08 AM

Love the pattern with Zebrawood. Has anybody tried using an electric hand planer on end grain?


View rockmolsen's profile


278 posts in 1772 days

#8 posted 11-09-2016 11:46 PM

Hi Barbra,

I have not tried the Hand planer but would still use waste slices on the ends to combat the tear-out.


-- Rick --------The measure of who we are is what we do with what we have.

View quasarwutwut's profile


59 posts in 804 days

#9 posted 12-18-2016 05:33 AM

I had not considered zebrawood, and now i am completely sold. Beautiful work!

-- Jordan, Chicago, not allowed near saws or goats. Or goats with saws.

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