Maple tables from the scrap pile.

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Project by Natalie posted 540 days ago 1678 views 6 times favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

During my earlier woodworking days I lived in Port Angeles, Washington, and there was a saw mill just outside of town that specialized in cutting figured maple and old growth spruce. They would find amazing figured maple and cut it into 8 inch by 24 inch blanks that were 8-quarter thick. Then they would split them into a book-matched set. They would sell these to guitar and violin making companies. However, if the wood had the slightest imperfection they would toss it into the scrap pile! Many people collected it and used it for fire wood!

This explains why I have a shop full of wood. I would collect these book matched sets by the truck load and I still have a huge collection of them waiting to be something. I have made dozens of these tables and sold them at a local gallery, mostly to tourists who came through town to take the ferry over to Victoria. They were small enough that people could often take them with them, but I did end up shipping quite a few of them.

Many times the blanks had not been split into the book-matched set so they were still 8 quarter thick and I could use those to make a set of legs. I usually used Cherry for the table skirt because I liked the contrast, but sometimes I would also use Cherry for the legs.

In the last photo you can see that I attached to tops with buttons, which is how I do all my table tops.

I also collected similar blanks of old growth spruce from the scrap pile and will eventually post a project I made using some of the spruce.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

27 comments so far

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 1820 days

#1 posted 540 days ago

That is beautiful maple! And you’ve made some fantastic tables with it. When I first started carving gunstocks, I bought a load of maple from a dealer that supplied guitar builders. He had a stack of rejected lumber that he sold for $1 a BFT! I wish I had some left.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Dusty56's profile


11638 posts in 2271 days

#2 posted 540 days ago

Ooooh so beautiful ! You did that spectacular wood proud with your table designs : )
Welcome to Lumberjocks , Natalie !

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

View michelletwo's profile


2172 posts in 1598 days

#3 posted 540 days ago

welcome to Lj’s..good to see another gal here. thanks for the story to your piece.

-- We call the destruction of replaceable human made items vandalism, while the destruction of irreplaceable natural resources is called development.

View Marianne's profile


19 posts in 557 days

#4 posted 540 days ago

That is some beautiful wood! A great table!

-- "The things you take for granted...someone else is praying for..."

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

12863 posts in 921 days

#5 posted 539 days ago

Beautiful wood. Good project.

Welcome to LJ’s

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View grizzman's profile (online now)


6698 posts in 1886 days

#6 posted 539 days ago

i really like this whole project here, and the fact that you used wood that was discarded, the table are beautiful and i love the legs one there, really nice ..i look forward to seeing more of your work…keep it coming..grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View david38's profile


997 posts in 926 days

#7 posted 539 days ago

good looking table

View dee2's profile


277 posts in 919 days

#8 posted 539 days ago

Beautiful tables. Love seeing the wood grain, very nice design. Hard to believe this wood was in a scrap pile at one time. I too love to scavenge!

-- Dee2, OH Aromatherapy....fresh cut wood!!

View BarbS's profile


2433 posts in 2668 days

#9 posted 539 days ago

I’m incredibly jealous of your scraps! Wonderful tables, Natalie, and Welcome to Lumbejocks!


View will delaney's profile

will delaney

320 posts in 1218 days

#10 posted 539 days ago

Wow! What a nice scraps pile you have. Very nice build and the combination of the Cherry and Maple is beautiful. I could always help you get rid of all those scraps :-)

View Natalie 's profile


366 posts in 549 days

#11 posted 539 days ago

Thanks for the comments. Yeah, I feel guilty taking much credit for this project. The wood does the work for me. This is my passion and most of my projects start with a piece of wood that is begging to be honored.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

View UncleStumpy's profile


360 posts in 896 days

#12 posted 539 days ago

I HAVE TO MOVE NEAR A SAWMILL, where they toss out stunning wood like this. It numbs my brain.
I’ve made several tables with bookmatched wood, but paid through the nose for the wood.
Really, really nice work!

-- "They don't want it perfect - they want it SPECIAL"

View DaddyZ's profile


2368 posts in 1623 days

#13 posted 539 days ago

Nice Wood !!!

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View a1Jim's profile


111999 posts in 2160 days

#14 posted 539 days ago

Wowsville great job,and great wood.

-- Custom furniture

View josh's profile


878 posts in 1152 days

#15 posted 539 days ago

Scraptastic! Can’t beat the it!

-- Josh; Former Pennsylvanian, current Coloradan

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