10 x 4 redwood slab table with malachite and shell inlay

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Project by Andy Needles posted 1454 days ago 5470 views 20 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Finally had time to post this big redwood table that I completed a month ago. It was a commission from a local winemaker. He provided the redwood and the shells for inlay.

Working the slab was a challenge. I had to strap four sawhorses together, to support the slab as I worked it.

I actually split it in two with a sledge and a froe as it has a split right at the center rings of the tree. I worked the bottom of each piece, as they were small enough for me to flip myself.

I then flipped them over (top side up) and doweled them together with 8 1×12 oak dowels. This got me through the wood near the middle of the slab that is prone to movement.

To flatten the slab, I used my huge 1806B 6 3/4 Makita planer, and crosshatched the slab. I then came over it with a belt sander w/ a sanding frame, and finally the r/o sander. I popped the grain with shellac and coated with Target poly. I had to spray the underside lying on my back. and moving the sawhorses as needed.

The inlay is a mix of crushed malachite and epoxy resin. I grind it off with a concrete grinder, and finish with a belt sander and RO sander. You use LOTS of sand paper doing these sections!!!

They were so pleased that in addition to the payment, they set us up with about two cases of quality local wine (Minassian Young) in addition!

Oh- the base is made of Monterey Cypress- a beautiful stable local wood- the joint is a simple through tenon with a shoulder.

Other than house additions, it’s the biggest Damn thing I’ve built yet!!!

-- rustic andy

20 comments so far

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8768 posts in 2725 days

#1 posted 1454 days ago

Nice looking job.

Well executed and good interpretation of the given materials.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View DBnR's profile


14 posts in 1654 days

#2 posted 1454 days ago

I’m amazed… and a little jealous.
Must’ve been a fun project.

View Splinterman's profile


23058 posts in 1987 days

#3 posted 1454 days ago

Hey Andy,
Now that is cool….well done.

View mahadevwood's profile


403 posts in 1645 days

#4 posted 1454 days ago

nice job, amazing finishing


View rivergirl's profile


3198 posts in 1464 days

#5 posted 1454 days ago

Beautiful table! After you split the table and inserted the inlay material how did you keep the material from falling through the big crack?
PS I found a good “how to” article by Stephen Hatcher- it’s a pdf file… here’s the link.

another article- inludes specific details for materials/supplierst etc. also a pdf file.

another good one

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View obi999's profile


182 posts in 2034 days

#6 posted 1454 days ago

Oh wow, its an absolutely perfect table and a pleasure to the eyes of an woodworker and “wood-lover”. I am sure, the real beauty finally comes out in a room with the additional ambience.
very cool job, thanks for sharing

-- *** the german lumberjock ***

View rivergirl's profile


3198 posts in 1464 days

#7 posted 1454 days ago

Wood anthracite coal work for an inlay?

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View TZH's profile


421 posts in 1766 days

#8 posted 1454 days ago

Beautiful table, beautiful inlay work, once again. You’ve just given me the inspiration I need to do a similar style table for a dining room. In fact, your design for the base is exactly what I’ve been looking for as this couple wants a live edge slab for the top (probably juniper), but a more “machined” look for the base. Your’s could be adapted to work for them, and looks to be sturdy enough to support just about any weight load it gets subjected to. Once again, your artistic design, combined with the naturalness of the wood itself and the superb inlay work, blows me away. Thanks for sharing.



View DiamondWW's profile


84 posts in 1859 days

#9 posted 1454 days ago

Wow! that is incredible. I like the way you did the inlay. Awesome work!

-- There is no such thing as scrap wood, only smaller projects.

View Gary's profile


1018 posts in 2950 days

#10 posted 1454 days ago

Great looking table. Even my wife noticed it from across the room as she was shoulder-surfing my viewing.

-- Gary, Florida.

View jeth's profile


210 posts in 1464 days

#11 posted 1454 days ago

A very beautiful piece, love the inlay work and the colour contrast. Inspired and impressed once again.

View jim1953's profile


2671 posts in 2468 days

#12 posted 1453 days ago

Great Lookin Job

-- Jim, Kentucky

View Dark_Lightning's profile


1690 posts in 1735 days

#13 posted 1453 days ago


Reminds of the bubinga slabs I see at my dream website. Maybe I could afford a redwood slab instead.

View GabrielX's profile


231 posts in 1457 days

#14 posted 1452 days ago

There is just something to be said about a big redwood table…

-- GX

View zlatanv's profile


689 posts in 1860 days

#15 posted 1452 days ago

Nice job, i like your other stuff too.

-- Z, Rockwall, TX

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