Cutting Board Gifts

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Project by Ralphk posted 08-21-2011 04:50 PM 1437 views 3 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These are a few cutting boards that we made this past Christmas as gifts for friends and family. The wood used includes Black Walnut, Purpleheart, Maple and Curly Maple. The boards are finished using mineral oil and beeswax for a food safe finish. The glue used was Titebond III. These are great little projects to practice milling, glue-up and finishing skills. We made up little cards that identify the woods used and on the backside have care instructions for the cutting boards. The cards also make the gift look a little more “professional” even though we are just a man, a wife and a garage full of tools:)

-- - Ralph, Great Falls, Virginia

7 comments so far

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2511 days

#1 posted 08-21-2011 05:41 PM

I’m in the process of making a few end grain butcher block cutting boards right now. Most will be cheese board size, 6” x 8” x 3/4” and a few will be huge at 24” x 30” x 1 1/2”.
They will be made up mostly of Osage Orange and Pecan in the field then around the edge will have a band of English Walnut, Hickory and Persimmon laid on edge with box joint corners, routed with a cove bit to create a nice detail.
All the wood is from wind falls and tree trimming on the property that we manage and has been drying for about 2 1/2 to 3 years.

I would be interested in how you are making the cards. I made some for one batch, but using my inkjet printer I found the ink isn’t waterproof. It faded in the sun and as soon as it got wet ran into a kaleidoscope of grey and black.

My thought was to , make a steel template with the words on it, then use a propane torch to burn the words into the wood. Alternatively, I could use the Dremel and a small bit to carve the words into the back of the board.

Any thoughts on this plan?

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View Ralphk's profile


7 posts in 2512 days

#2 posted 08-21-2011 06:14 PM

Dal300 -

Sounds nice. I’m not sure what would happen if banding using box joint corners in terms of wood movement but I imagine that given the relatively small size of the individual boards it may be fine. We just printed the cards using an inkjet printer as well and haven’t had any problems with the ink running or fading. That said, they probably weren’t sitting in the sun for any significant length of time or gotten wet immediately after printing. All in all we haven’t had any problem with them. As for branding the wood, you may want to consider a branding iron (either electric or torch heated) similar to what is sold here:

I would think that using a Dremel might be a little time consuming and inconsistent. Also, after going through the trouble of making the boards I wouldn’t want to mess it up by signing my work:)

-- - Ralph, Great Falls, Virginia

View Jonathan's profile


2608 posts in 3074 days

#3 posted 08-21-2011 06:35 PM

I think it’s imperative to always include a card with something like this, as people are prone to absentmindedly sticking everything in the dishwasher these days. Not only that, but it lets them know not to leave it soaking in water, and to follow-up with mineral oil every now and then so the board doesn’t dry out.

Speaking of boards, I like your choice of woods, and the various strip sizing you used here, as well as the way you aligned the outer walnut pieces.

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3711 days

#4 posted 08-21-2011 07:38 PM

Larger photos and better lighting would help your projects a lot .
If you want to show off something that is dark , use a lighter background : )

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

View amagineer's profile


1415 posts in 2620 days

#5 posted 08-21-2011 08:02 PM

The colors mate well. I always include a card as well. We are familiar with the exotic woods, but most people are not and fascinated with what kind of woods they are and where they come from.

-- Flaws are only in the eye of the artisan!

View Ralphk's profile


7 posts in 2512 days

#6 posted 08-21-2011 08:20 PM

Dusty56 -

Point taken. I just joined the Lumberjocks community and thought that I would post a few pics of some of my projects. The pictures weren’t really taken with the idea that I would post them for viewing, rather that I would just remember what they looked like and what woods I used. Also, I wasn’t sure how to best size the pictures. I was concerned that they shouldn’t be too big and take up too much storage. Is there a rule of thumb that anyone could share with me regarding sizing?

I love the site, the ability to view others projects all of the feedback and the knowledge shared in the forums.

Thanks for viewing.

-- - Ralph, Great Falls, Virginia

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3711 days

#7 posted 08-21-2011 09:17 PM

I’ve never “resized” any of my project pictures posted here, so I’m afraid I can’t answer that question for you.
I was in the same mind set regarding photos as you are , but now that I have a showplace to share them at , I hopefully have become better with the lighting and display of my projects. : )
Keep up the good work and welcome to Lumberjocks : )

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

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