Spalted Maple Secretary Desk

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Project by LoganN posted 522 days ago 1293 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This desk is made of Spalted Maple and Katalox. I’d never used this wood before (Katalox) and I’m not sure that I ever will again. It is the densest wood I have ever used and it was tremendously difficult to work with. It does, however, have a natural beautiful contrast between the heart wood and sapwood, which is what gives it that neat dark/light look of the wood.
This was made to fit in a specific corner of our house and store some papers and the kids backpacks when they come home from school. The bottom 2 drawers are actually one large drawer. Hand cut mortises in the top hold the sides in place. Inside dividers are maple and walnut. Instead of using drop front supports (which I did purchase) I opted to have the first drawer act as support for the drop front. I also decided against putting any (OK, my wife decided) hardware on the drop front because the live edge of the wood is perfect to use as a way to open the drop front.
The drawers are made of simple 1/2” ply with the ends pinned using 1/4 walnut dowels. The desk itself is 43” tall, 14” deep, and 33” wide.
I finished it with Danish oil and Arm-R-Seal. Most of these pictures don’t give a really good idea of how beautiful the spalt lines are, but I simply love the top. Hope you like it

12 comments so far

View helluvawreck's profile


15627 posts in 1501 days

#1 posted 522 days ago

Nice piece and beautiful wood.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Sergio's profile


402 posts in 1327 days

#2 posted 522 days ago

Wonderful wood. It can be displayed like a natural art piece

-- - Greetings from Brazil - --

View JSB's profile


681 posts in 713 days

#3 posted 522 days ago

The grain is gorgeous! I love that side panel. Nice!

-- Jay - or

View david38's profile


1065 posts in 978 days

#4 posted 522 days ago

beautiful desk

View Woodbridge's profile


2672 posts in 1053 days

#5 posted 522 days ago

Logan, that is a beautiful piece. The spalted maple looks great, I really like the through tenons on the top … a nice detail, and “your” decision to use the live edge instead of hardware to open the drop front was a great idea.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View gsimon's profile


485 posts in 748 days

#6 posted 522 days ago

this looks amazing! Great job
The contrast is so vivid it looks to be inlays

-- Greg Simon

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13833 posts in 973 days

#7 posted 522 days ago

Nice looking desk.

Welcome to LumberJocks

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

View gfadvm's profile


10740 posts in 1325 days

#8 posted 522 days ago

A beautiful desk. I love the gorgeous wood choices and the drawer supporting the desk surface looks like a good idea to me.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View bugz's profile


773 posts in 1298 days

#9 posted 522 days ago

Very nice use of some beautiful wood, great contrast. Welcome to lumberjocks.

-- Bob, Lewistown, Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View Kenns's profile


155 posts in 1226 days

#10 posted 521 days ago

This is really a nice piece. I love the Maple. Where did you every find such a beautiful selection of wood?

-- Then, Than, Their, There, They're, To, Too, Two.....Pine, Maple, Walnut....We need to know the difference.....

View workerinwood's profile


2708 posts in 1702 days

#11 posted 521 days ago

Beautiful!! Great job, welcome to LJ’s.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

View LoganN's profile


138 posts in 535 days

#12 posted 521 days ago

Thanks everyone. This is one of my favorite pieces so far! It is a great addition to the house.
I bought the wood at Pittsford Lumber in Pittsford, NY. They have a great selection of wood at decent prices.

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