First end grain cutting board - Jenn's X-mas present

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Project by pneufab posted 12-25-2011 10:05 PM 2515 views 3 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I decided to try my first end-grain cutting board as a Christmas present for my wife (this seems to be a theme for most of my projects!)

It is hard maple and purple heart. The purple heart arrived very brown. It is currently sitting outside in the sun to try and purple it up some more.

She likes nice even stripes, but after the initial glue up, cutting and flipping to the end grain, the thought of re-gluing and keeping the lines perfect was too intimidating to me. I decided to go a bit random, although I think three or more species would have worked better for a random board. Next one maybe I will have the guts to try a straight line, end grain board. Finished with salad bowl finish.

Thanks for looking.

11 comments so far

View degoose's profile


7193 posts in 2773 days

#1 posted 12-25-2011 10:19 PM

That is really fabulous… I like the staggeredness of the pattern…

-- Drink twice... and don't bother to cut... @ For lovers of all things timber...

View hasbeen's profile


90 posts in 2104 days

#2 posted 12-25-2011 10:39 PM

Greetings from the socialist capital of America – California.
Why do you think they call it the ’left coast’?

Well, I like it a lot. Forget about the even stripes. I think you have a winner here. I’m sure your wife will love it too. If she doesn’t, call me ASAP.

Moreno Valley’s local has-been.
Servant of the Living God.

-- I may not have a lot of good ideas, but some of them are just incredible.

View Ken90712's profile


16863 posts in 2607 days

#3 posted 12-25-2011 11:40 PM

Great job I’m sure she loves it!!!!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 2975 days

#4 posted 12-25-2011 11:53 PM

Great job on the cutting board

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View smitty22's profile


694 posts in 2366 days

#5 posted 12-26-2011 04:44 AM

Nicely done, sort of psychedelic!

-- Smitty

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 1906 days

#6 posted 12-26-2011 04:49 AM

I think you can expect the Purple to become browner (More Brown?), the longer it is in the sun.

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

View pneufab's profile


112 posts in 2499 days

#7 posted 12-26-2011 04:59 AM

Thanks for the comments!

Dallas- The piece of paper that came with it from Bell Forest said that exposure to UV will help it turn purple. It does seem like it works, to an extent (I keep it in the sun all last week) and it is a bit more purple.

I also read something online about heat. I tried heating a small scrap with a heat gun. It did turn it a dark purple, but it also melted the glue that was on it! Obviously I cannot use that technique without disastrous consequences.

Do you have another suggestion?

View j_c's profile


68 posts in 1862 days

#8 posted 12-26-2011 01:27 PM

I think your pattern is better than ‘even stripes’. Beautiful finish too, I’m sure she loves it!

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 1906 days

#9 posted 12-26-2011 03:18 PM

From what I’ve seen, it’s the UV that causes the resins to turn brown.

I’ve been told that you can put the wood in an oven on a low heat and that will allow the resins to flow through the wood a lot better, causing a more purplish coloring.

Here is a site that kind of tells about what happens.

And another site that shows aging and effects of UV light.

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

View pneufab's profile


112 posts in 2499 days

#10 posted 12-26-2011 05:13 PM

Dallas – Thanks for the links. It’s weird because that exact link (the “and another site” link) is where is states:

“plank and closeup—- notice how the plank clearly shows the effect of having part of it (top) exposed to light and air while the rest was covered by another plank. Purpleheart has a muddy purple color at first but if you expose it to sunlight it turns a brilliant purple.”

Maybe moderate exposure turns it purple and too much will brown it???

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 1906 days

#11 posted 12-26-2011 05:45 PM

Yeah, I haven’t worked with it a lot so I couldn’t say for sure, but it could be like red Cedar, Ipe and Bodark. The longer they are exposed to the UV rays, the browner they turn, although Cedar and Ipe both turn silver when exposed to the elements.

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

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