|Project by MHarper90||posted 12-22-2013 02:56 AM||1862 views||9 times favorited||12 comments|
My parents refuse to give me Christmas suggestions for them, so I had to come up with something myself. At one point this year my mother asked me to make her some wooden coasters, but I never got around to it (I cut off part of my left thumb at work not even a month later…). I purchased a small stack of 8/4 hardwoods back at Thanksgiving from the store near my parents’ house in order to take with me back to work in New York (I’m a carpenter). I had no planned projects, but wanted to get some materials because I haven’t found a good supplier in New York yet. I decided to use some of the hard maple and purple heart to make this matching set for them.
I copied a fairly common end-grain cutting board design I’ve seen several times here on LJ. I really liked the design, and this is my first ever cutting board, so I wanted to give it a go. Let me just say that it was hell. We have some pretty nice tools in the wood shop at work and I just kept burning the purple heart every time I cut it, and I spent a lot of time sanding after every glue up. We have a C-drum sander, but it’s not quite wide enough so it took hours of passing it through, rotating directions, and running at a very slow speed. Eventually the thing turned out great, and I’m very pleased, but I never expected it to take so long. I also used an old bottle of Titebond III we had laying around at work for my initial glue up, and I think it might be a little too old. The first glue up fell apart on me, but not until after I had already made the second set of cuts. It took me an extra day and a new bottle of glue to get back on track. I finished the cutting board with Watco Butcher Block Finish.
I made the coasters to somewhat match the theme of the board, but with it being much smaller, I had to condense it down. I did this by cutting the dimensions you see in the coaster, but made them 10 inches long and glued them together to form a giant log. I then sliced them on the table saw (I was waiting on a new bandsaw resaw blade in the mail), ran them through the drum sander, and routed and sanded the edges round. I then built a quick little holder for them with some scraps I had. I finished these with several coats of lacquer.
The final piece in the set is a salt & pepper & napkin holder. I picked up the pepper grinder and salt shaker at TJ Max for a good price and built the holder around them. I thought the pattern used on the cutting board and coasters would be too busy for the middle of a dinner table, so I went with a simpler pattern. The vertical pieces are dadoed into the base and the grinder/shaker are recessed about a 3/8” with a 2” round forstner bit. Also finished with several coats of lacquer.
My parents loved these items when the opened them tonight while we celebrated Christmas a few days early with family. I was also very impressed with what I was able to come up with. This is the first time I have made any of these types of items and it’s also the first time I’ve ever done much with hardwoods. I build with oak a lot at work, but that gets old. I also don’t do much glueing without fasteners like I did here. That was an experience…
I hope you all enjoy looking at these! Merry Christmas!