Pie-Crust Table

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Project by Eli posted 03-03-2010 08:09 PM 3065 views 3 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a pie-crust table I made while attending the North Bennet Street School in Boston, MA. It is solid mahogany and the top is a single 36” wide board. The top was dished out on the lathe, then shaped by hand.

I like the figure of the top and the overall design. It has the usual crust layout with 8 repetitions. I based the legs on an original, which I can’t cite at the moment. They had a lot of tension which I wanted to recreate. I felt that I succeeded in general. The feet continued the tension of the legs. My carvings left much to be desired. They lacked polish to the point of distraction. The column is under-embellished, which contrasts with the legs and top.

25 comments so far

View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 3888 days

#1 posted 03-03-2010 08:19 PM

absolutly beautiful…....................and no easy piece to make.

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View CharlieM1958's profile


16274 posts in 4213 days

#2 posted 03-03-2010 08:24 PM

Fantastic job!

I’m left wondering where one finds a 36” wide mahogany board and a lathe big enough to put it on. :-)

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

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 3722 days

#3 posted 03-03-2010 08:31 PM


View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3957 days

#4 posted 03-03-2010 08:33 PM

Excellent!! I’m with Charlie, that is one big lathe. I’m guessing an outboard turning???

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View jm82435's profile


1285 posts in 3737 days

#5 posted 03-03-2010 08:37 PM

Very nice. Welcome to LJs.

-- A thing of beauty is a joy forever...

View Tony Strupulis's profile

Tony Strupulis

260 posts in 3118 days

#6 posted 03-03-2010 09:14 PM

That’s awesome! Did you turn the table top on a lathe as others suggested or did you lower the field by hand?

Are you Eli, the NBSS student from the T-Chisel podcasts?

-- Tony -

View Eli's profile


141 posts in 3001 days

#7 posted 03-03-2010 09:28 PM

The board is from Irion Lumber in Pennsylvania. It was turned outboard on a lathe at the North Bennet Street School. I am that Eli. :) Thanks for the compliments.

View MrHudon's profile


114 posts in 3204 days

#8 posted 03-03-2010 10:32 PM

What an outstanding piece of work, that’s the type of work I strive for but don’t think I’ll live long enough to get that good!
I find it interesting and I guess all things are relative; you build a beautiful piece like that and point out what you don’t like about it. Guess that’s part of being a woodworker no matter what level we are at.
My carvings left much to be desired. They lacked polish to the point of distraction. The column is under-embellished, which contrasts with the legs and top.
Do you get graded on your work at NBSS?

-- Mark,

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3682 days

#9 posted 03-03-2010 11:04 PM

Personally I think that the column has just enough “flavor” to it and goes well with the flow of the legs before the feet “happen”. The top is remarkable to say the least. What did you finish this beauty with ?

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Eli's profile


141 posts in 3001 days

#10 posted 03-03-2010 11:23 PM

We were graded, but the grades aren’t very serious. If you make a good effort and fulfill the requirements, you’re fine. I don’t generally point those things out, although it is a natural tendency of some woodworkers. I’m certainly proud of my work and think it looks great. This piece has been around for a while and I’m always open to critique. I wanted to give everyone an idea of where I stand on my work and invite criticism. I appreciate the pats on the back and I also appreciate honest and open critique.

The finish is just oil and shellac. I’m not a very good finisher and I didn’t want to experiment on this one.


View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6855 posts in 3974 days

#11 posted 03-03-2010 11:25 PM

Great job Eli,

Beautiful !

Makes me want to finsh the one in my shop.

Although we didn’t use a lathe, we used a router and sled on the top. We got the Mahogany in Pennsylvania also, but at Hearnes Hardwoods.

I found the feet to be far more difficuclt to carve than ball and claw legs for a highboy.

Just not as intuitive. But since it’s almost finished, I think I will get back to it. Only a handful of hours needed to finish it.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View dfdye's profile


372 posts in 3031 days

#12 posted 03-04-2010 12:49 AM

I’m blown away by the mahogany plank you used for the top. I have seen some pretty big mahogany boards, but a 36” wide single piece is always impressive, especially with that grain.

-- David from Indiana --

View rmoore44's profile


51 posts in 3029 days

#13 posted 03-04-2010 02:53 AM

Never heard of this kind of table, but its awesome. And the comments on the process are also fascinating.

-- --RoB, Florida

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3768 days

#14 posted 03-04-2010 03:13 AM

Very impressive piece. You did a beautiful job on it. Thanks for posting.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Loucarb's profile


2388 posts in 3440 days

#15 posted 03-04-2010 03:21 AM

Excellent craftsmanship. Well done.

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