1st intarsia piece, JGR whale

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Project by jfk4032 posted 10-27-2011 01:16 PM 2854 views 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
1st intarsia piece, JGR whale
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I started reading up on intarsia earlier this year and thought this was an area of woodworking I would like to get into. I purchased a handful of books, researched many pieces online at LJ and other forums, and read up on the techniques used by JGR, Kathy Wise and others. I had some of the needed equipment and tools and have continued to accumulate some more as I go.

I actually completed this project during the Summer while taking an intarsia class at a nearby Woodcraft store, but immediately got busy into two other portrait projects and forgot to post this piece.

I cut, shaped and sanded this JGR whale at the intarsia class and finished and glued it up back home. I used poplar and cedar for the piece with walnut for the eye. I learned a lot working on this piece…the cutting wasn’t too bad and neither was the shaping. But, the gluing presented me with some challenges. The pressure I used from the sides to get the glue to set caused the tail piece and the jaw piece to rise up a little. By the time I noticed this the glue had already taken hold. Next time I’ll lay the pieces on a flat surface and use that leverage while apply pressure from the sides. I may also use CA glue on the edges before gluing it to the backing.

I know I’ve seen it posted by many more experienced intarsia folks to just jump in and try it and don’t be intimidated…which is what I did. I learned a lot and look forward to progressing into this more. I already purchased 3 more JGR beginner patterns and started working on several custom designed patterns as well.

I have to build some shelving for my basement and also in my workshop before I can get back into intarsia, but I’m hoping by the end of the year, I can start up again with it.

-- ---Joel; Central MD...rookie empter nester and getting back into woodworking!

3 comments so far

View j_c's profile


68 posts in 2468 days

#1 posted 10-27-2011 02:14 PM

Really really nice! Love the choice of woods. Look’s very much like a blue whale, if I’m not mistaken?

I’ve never heard of ‘intarsia’ before, but I’m sure it will now be added to my never-ending list of things to research…

View hairy's profile


2718 posts in 3557 days

#2 posted 10-27-2011 07:56 PM

Very nice!
You say it has a flaw, but I sure don’t see it.
When I look at something I’ve done mistakes are the first thing I see.

-- My reality check bounced...

View Time2beupinAZ's profile


453 posts in 2986 days

#3 posted 10-27-2011 10:10 PM

Great job there. I just started this type of cutting to. Im just learnig on the fly but am having a blast doing it. have fun and keep up the good work.

-- Tim - I usally measure twice after I cut......then I know for sure that I cut it short.....

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