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Mahogany Sofa Table

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Project by Todd A. Clippinger posted 2674 days ago 9155 views 124 times favorited 47 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This sofa table is made of mahogany and ash. I made it for my wife because everything I make goes into someone else’s house. My wife and I get to look at this everyday.

This table is my favorite because it was a breakout piece for me. It was my first piece that exhibited exceptional design and craftsmanship in comparison to the more simple projects that I had done. This was the point in which I truly got hooked on fine furniture. This table was part of the portfolio that gained me juried entrance to the Western Design Conference.

The inspiration for this table is actually Arts & Crafts. The original drawing reflects the Arts & Crafts idea that evolved when I added a curve to one of the legs. I traced the drawing over and added curves to all of the legs and stretchers.

I think some of the design elements of A&C are a little heavy and too blocky. The natural thing to do is to throw in some curves. Sweet sexy curves!

The ash that I used for the slats was actually scrap wood. I happened to find it setting next to the mahogany one day and it struck me that they would go well together. I like ash with the colored streaks in it and in order to show the pattern at it’s best, I realized that slats would work better than spindles. An added benefit was that I also had fewer pieces to deal with.

I made 7 legs to get 4 good ones. In cutting curved legs it always releases tension in an unbalanced manner and they will twist.

The finish is a precat lacquer from Sherwin Williams.

Here is a good lesson for everyone: My wife and I clean our furniture with only a damp rag, we do not use furniture polish. When the top got scratched it was no problem. I used a rag wet with lacquer thinner to wipe the scratch and lightly melt the surface. I used a small brush to apply 2 coats of lacquer to the scar. After achieving the build I did a light sand over the whole top, wiped it again with a rag dampened with thinner, and resprayed it. I would defy anyone to find the scratch. Lacquer is easy to repair if it is not contaminated.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com





47 comments so far

View scottb's profile

scottb

3647 posts in 2925 days


#1 posted 2674 days ago

I LOVE this one!

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- http://blanchardcreative.etsy.com -- http://snbcreative.wordpress.com/

View WayneC's profile

WayneC

12249 posts in 2695 days


#2 posted 2674 days ago

It IS very nice. Thanks for sharing Todd.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8715 posts in 2697 days


#3 posted 2674 days ago

Thanks for the compliment Wayne C, but you’re just a dog, what do you know?

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View WayneC's profile

WayneC

12249 posts in 2695 days


#4 posted 2674 days ago

Good furnature for one thing when I see it… lol

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Chip's profile

Chip

1904 posts in 2690 days


#5 posted 2674 days ago

Another beautiful piece Todd. The grain and craftmanship are just outstanding. I am in the middle of doing a piece with curved legs and could have used the “7 legs to get 4 good ones” comment earlier. Glad to see that though, so I know it’s not just me. LOL.

Always a pleasure to see your stuff and learn a little bit more about fine woodworking. Thanks for sharing.

-- Better to say nothing and be thought the fool... then to speak and erase all doubt!

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8715 posts in 2697 days


#6 posted 2674 days ago

It may seem like I write a lot of explanation in my text. But I like to make it easy for people to glean the information without writing a tech manual. I hope it helps others further their talent.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Karson's profile

Karson

34853 posts in 2998 days


#7 posted 2674 days ago

Be careful the Dog lifts his leg around Fire Hydrants, maybe even tables.

Great table Todd. I can see wood bend when you release uneven balance wood. Were the unusable legs dramatically different?

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View BassBully's profile

BassBully

259 posts in 2695 days


#8 posted 2674 days ago

Great lesson Todd. Thanks. I think the Ash contrasts nicely with the mahogany.

-- There are three types of people in the world, those who can count and those who can't!

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8715 posts in 2697 days


#9 posted 2674 days ago

There was a substantial amount of movement. One leg actually twisted like someone was wringing water out of it. It was pretty amazing how much it moved. None of the legs moved until the second cut was made.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana, http://americancraftsmanworkshop.com

View Max's profile

Max

55956 posts in 2871 days


#10 posted 2674 days ago

Todd,

As Karson said the Dog lifts his leg around maybe even table legs… Maybe that dog got to your table legs?? and it wasn’t tension that caused them to twist!!!!!

-- Max "Desperado", Salt Lake City, UT

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 2912 days


#11 posted 2674 days ago

You have so great design skills. I’m always happy to see the next project. Keep them coming.

View Jeff's profile

Jeff

1011 posts in 2691 days


#12 posted 2674 days ago

As always, a fabulous piece, Todd. I also greatly appreciate the depth of commentary in your posts.

-- Jeff, St. Paul, MN

View DrSawdust's profile

DrSawdust

307 posts in 2696 days


#13 posted 2674 days ago

Todd, that is absolutely spectacular. I really appreciate the explinations you give. Please don’t stop teaching.

-- Making sawdust is what I do best

View gizmodyne's profile

gizmodyne

1763 posts in 2688 days


#14 posted 2674 days ago

Beautiful grain! Do you spray the finish?

-- -John "Do I have to keep typing a smiley? Just assume it's a joke." www.flickr.com/photos/gizmodyne

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2758 days


#15 posted 2673 days ago

and I really appreciate the info re: caring for the finished product.

(very lovely)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

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