Not My Knot

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Project by ChuckV posted 04-16-2017 10:43 PM 3059 views 3 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When I saw the recent trefoils project by BanjoBen, I knew right away that I had to try making one myself. Ben kindly helped me out with some of the details.

I made this out of black walnut. The miter keys are maple and padauk. This was lot of fun to make. Since I don’t work much in my shop in the winter, it was also the perfect “warm-up” project for the upcoming season.

In Progress

Here are all the pieces cut to size:

Here is how I held the unglued pieces to cut the miter key slot on my table saw:

After the first round of gluing:

After the second round of gluing:

The Confession
Apparently my miters were a bit off in such a way that the errors compounded. When I got to the last joint, it was off by about 3/8”. I could have forced it into position, but then the joint would not meet well. Instead, I patched the error as best I could:

Once trimmed and finished, it is not perfect, but not too bad:

Now what?
My family had been asking me what I planned to do with this thing once it was completed. I have a habit of building projects just because it contains some technique or feature that interests me. I came up with some ideas on using the knot:

(1) Can it restrain a hedgehog?

I guess not.

(2) How about a tortoise?


(3) A snake?

Never mind…

Does anyone have any other ideas?

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

13 comments so far

View madts's profile


1884 posts in 2577 days

#1 posted 04-16-2017 11:24 PM

Looks to me that it is the infamous Gordian Knot

I would hang it from the ceiling as a mobile. Then it can at least restrain some air.


-- Thor and Odin are still the greatest of Gods.

View BanjoBen's profile


89 posts in 1138 days

#2 posted 04-17-2017 12:52 AM

Very nice. The contrasting/multilayer splines are a nice touch.

View BanjoBen's profile


89 posts in 1138 days

#3 posted 04-17-2017 12:53 AM

And I think it might work better as a hedgehog jungle gym than a restraint. :)

View Michael McKenzie's profile

Michael McKenzie

64 posts in 677 days

#4 posted 04-17-2017 01:26 AM

It’s a beautiful piece that can stand on it’s own merits. Personally I’d like to see it waterproofed then mounted on a no-friction swivel atop a nice pole and see if the wind will turn it….it’s that nice-it can be an art piece.

-- ~ Ancora imparo! ~

View SteveMI's profile


1128 posts in 3532 days

#5 posted 04-17-2017 02:21 AM

Looks great! I have one on my list for this week.

View Desert_Woodworker's profile


1673 posts in 1452 days

#6 posted 04-17-2017 03:56 AM

WOW! thank you for sharing this and the procedure….

-- Desert_Woodworker

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10369 posts in 4290 days

#7 posted 04-17-2017 04:49 AM

COOL exercise in precision joinery…

Very nice!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View ChuckV's profile


3183 posts in 3764 days

#8 posted 04-17-2017 11:48 AM

Thanks for all the kind comments. I meant to say that I used this Elmer’s glue. The initial tack is very quick, it’s not too runny, and it’s inexpensive.

Steve: I’m looking forward to seeing your take on the project.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View Roger's profile


20965 posts in 3041 days

#9 posted 04-17-2017 11:56 AM

Some very unique eye candy.

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

View Porchfish's profile


847 posts in 2770 days

#10 posted 04-17-2017 01:24 PM

I love it, on the floor , I’d love it on a wall, or I’d love it on a pole , I’d love it suspended from above, I’d love it supported from below, I’d love it over here most, but I’d love it way over there. I love it, Well done and well loved ! .....Sam I am !

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View Ted78's profile


401 posts in 2237 days

#11 posted 04-17-2017 02:29 PM

A hedgehog, a tortoise AND a snake! Quite the menagerie!

Menagerie: 1. a collection of wild animals kept in captivity for exhibition. 2. a strange or diverse collection of people or things.

Alright maybe not so ‘captive’ but nailed the strange or diverse part.

Really nice project by the way.

-- Ted

View ravensrock's profile


507 posts in 1880 days

#12 posted 04-17-2017 06:58 PM

Cool project! Really like those splines!

-- Dave, York, PA, Wildside Woodworking

View Grumpy's profile


24818 posts in 4088 days

#13 posted 04-17-2017 10:47 PM

Nice job & congratulations on your Top3 award.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

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