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I AM BUILT FROM FIGURED SAPELE...WHAT AM I???

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Forum topic by Rob posted 03-24-2014 03:32 PM 1143 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Rob

65 posts in 212 days


03-24-2014 03:32 PM

Topic tags/keywords: resource question humor tip jig trick mahogany bandsaw carving tool drill-driver lathe planer scroll saw biscuit joiner chisel drill press miter saw router spray gun blade clamp jointer plane sander tablesaw carving milling shaping turning finishing refurbishing scrollworking veneering joining sanding sharpening woodburning arts and crafts rustic victorian greene and greene shaker modern traditional sapele light kitchen stain

I was browsing in my local lumberyard (U.S. Mahogany Corp. Matawan NJ) on Friday afternoon. It’s on my way home from work (good for me, bad for my bank account), and while looking for nothing really in particular, I came across a really nice board of Sapele in the “Exotics/Special Woods” section. It was calling out to me and even though I had zero purpose for it at the time, I knew if I purchased it I would eventually come up with something. So I made an impulse purchase. Considering my history and immature nature of just tossing money away like it’s nothing, this isn’t that bad. Last impulsive purchase I made was a car…just sayin. Anyway so here it is; I threw some min spirits over it real quick just to bring out the grain for the pic. Sorry if pic quality sucks. I didn’t feel like looking for my good camera.
Figured Sapele Board L72” x W6” x T.75”

It’s been a month now. At first I had it tucked away in a corner. But last week, I propped it up in on my outfeed/assembly table, so I would have to constantly look at it, and maybe inhibiting some sort of inspirational magic in the process. I apparently have none of that. I have thought of everything from wine racks to cigar boxes, to a lightstand or a slim threshold/hallway table. Although every one of those ideas would probably be a worthy skill honing experience, the latter being my favorite, none of them excite me. And that is how I usually decide to build something. When I get excited thinking about building and finishing it.

*I also thought about using it as a suspension lighting fixture in my kitchen (sort of like the picture below). That would actually be the best option for displaying the ‘figured’ grain in its entirety, without really having to cut it up, and would look awesome the way my kitchen is set up.

But this would entail zero woodworking skills, and really would just be a fabrication/electrical/homeowner DIY project, in which case I am posting this on the wrong site… LMK if any of you have an idea. I seem to have….builders block? Designers block? Idk, it’s a block though. Lend me some imagination please!

-- Rob, Middletown NJ


27 replies so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

14164 posts in 991 days


#1 posted 03-24-2014 03:33 PM

Sometimes you have to just stare at a specific board for a long time till it tells you what it was meant to be.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View The Box Whisperer's profile

The Box Whisperer

582 posts in 723 days


#2 posted 03-24-2014 03:34 PM

If it were me Id either resaw it into larger boxes or build it into a piece of furniture in a way that shows it off. Nice score!

EDITED: +1 to Monty. I do that too, Ive got one pice in the living room still hasnt told me what to do yet and its been 7 years.

-- "despite you best efforts and your confidence that your smarter and faster than a saw blade at 10k rpm…. your not …." - Charles Neil

View Rob's profile

Rob

65 posts in 212 days


#3 posted 03-24-2014 04:09 PM

Box Whisp I agree completely, that is why I was really considering making a Threshold/hallway entrance table. I would use the entire board as a long slim table top and it would be very visable, being in the hallway by my entrance. The light fixture woul def be cool, but running wire, and adding circuits and blah blah blah is one of my LEAST favorite things to do around the house. Idk, gotta stare at it a little longer like Mont said maybe.

-- Rob, Middletown NJ

View Picklehead's profile

Picklehead

575 posts in 582 days


#4 posted 03-24-2014 05:03 PM

Put it under your mattress and sleep on it awhile.

-- You've got to be smarter than the tree.

View Noel Fisher's profile

Noel Fisher

25 posts in 199 days


#5 posted 03-24-2014 05:24 PM

In 1969 I bought:
1. 2 African Ribbon Mahogany boards measuring about 4/4 X 10” by 5 ½ feet.
2. 3 White oak boards – each less than 4/4 by 5’ X 6”.
As I moved from apartment to house to house to house, those boards came along for the ride. And each time we cleaned the garage, my two sons wondered why on earth they were constantly moving boards out and then back into the garage (my car and wood shop was the garage for most of my life.) In 2007, Jackie and I decided to retire to East Tennessee, and guess what? Yup. Those boards came along in the United Van Lines truck, and were firmly ensconced in our rental house basement storage area. When drawings were nearly completed for the house we built, one son suggested that, since they moved these Mahogany boards about a thousand times in their young lives, they should be incorporated into design of the new retirement home. Thus, I designed a fireplace that I thought would use them appropriately as the mantel. The house was completed in 2007 and, surprise of surprises: the white oak boards are now in storage in my new basement wood shop, never mind that I’ve built numerous items from other white oak since moving to Tennessee. This long-worded reply is my way of saying three things:
1. You cannot count on me to give you any timely reasonable idea for any beautiful board you may have and love.
2. Loving boards may not prove to be an efficient use of money: The 2 African Mahogany boards purchased in 1969 came in at perhaps at $2.50 each. The additional 10 or 12 purchased from Jeffries Woodworks south of Knoxville came in at in excess of $1,000
3. Life is GREAT!

-- Noel

View Marcus's profile

Marcus

1047 posts in 673 days


#6 posted 03-24-2014 05:53 PM

I say just add it to the lumber pile. When the right project comes along for it, you’ll be glad it’s there.

I carried around a small chunk of curly maple (maybe 2 bd ft) for 2 or 3 yrs and had a piece of walnut that I had for 2 yrs and probably sat in my grandfather’s garage for 30 yrs before that. I had an idea for a toolbox for the kiddo in my head and I just knew those were the two pieces of lumber I needed to use and made these:

http://lumberjocks.com/projects/85615

View Rob's profile

Rob

65 posts in 212 days


#7 posted 03-24-2014 06:35 PM

Noel, awesome story actually. I could totally see myself doing that. I am actually growing to like just looking up at it every day I’m in my shop. Not good! haha…Also, I stop at the lumber yard probably somethimes once, and at least twice a week and I ALWAYS have to buy something. I’m not good at holding onto money, my wife is. They have an unbelievable exotics section. I was holding a $140 piece of Zebrawood the other day, and had to force myself to put it down and walk away. If it’s there next time, I will convince myself it’s meant to be, and probably buy it.
-And Marcus, that’s what it looks like is probably going to happen. I already have some really nice pieces of Walnut, Sapele, Mahogany and Teak. I’m becoming a hoarder of Woods. Admittance is the first step right?

-- Rob, Middletown NJ

View Rob's profile

Rob

65 posts in 212 days


#8 posted 03-24-2014 06:37 PM

Pickle I just saw that horrible joke. Well done sir… Well done

-- Rob, Middletown NJ

View Marcus's profile

Marcus

1047 posts in 673 days


#9 posted 03-24-2014 06:40 PM

you say you’re a wood hoarder like its a bad thing…strange.

View cdarney's profile

cdarney

76 posts in 1684 days


#10 posted 03-24-2014 07:46 PM

I do the same thing…find a piece of wood that’s just LOOKING for a project!

Hold on to it. I’ll sure bet something will come up and the lightbulb will go off in your head saying “I know what that board is!”

View TimberFramerBob's profile

TimberFramerBob

68 posts in 576 days


#11 posted 03-24-2014 09:18 PM

I have a huge shop and we tend to “impulse purchase” wood like that as well. Some wood has been here for years….....until the wood says ” psst…..hey…..this is what you should make out of me”........just let it sit. The WORST thing is to take a piece of wood and “force” it into a project…...as soon as you do that a lightbuld will go off as to what you really should have done with it. I think having wood sitting around is actually better because when you are hit with something yo have a choice of what you will make it out of and you are more likely to do it. When you have to decide on a wood BEFORE you buy it…...to me…...its harder. something will pop in your head….just let the wood chill for a while.lol

-- ..........a man who works with his hands, his brains, and his heart.....is an artist.

View The Box Whisperer's profile

The Box Whisperer

582 posts in 723 days


#12 posted 03-24-2014 09:21 PM

I like the idea of doing the table. I have a spalted beech slab that was sitting around, waiting to be made into just that, and then it dawned on my gf that it should be a bench with a set of built in shelves. Just goes to show you never know when an idea will pop into your head. Heres the slab…

-- "despite you best efforts and your confidence that your smarter and faster than a saw blade at 10k rpm…. your not …." - Charles Neil

View Noel Fisher's profile

Noel Fisher

25 posts in 199 days


#13 posted 03-24-2014 09:37 PM

If I had time to read how to post photos, I’d get a picture of the mahogany fireplace up here for y’all. Unless you lose them somehow, your boards are unlikely to become less valuable. Hold onto ‘em and their time will come.

-- Noel

View mrjinx007's profile

mrjinx007

1439 posts in 421 days


#14 posted 03-24-2014 11:58 PM

I don’t think there are enough of it to make a furniture unless you cut it in half lengthwise as a table top and use something else for legs and have it stand with partial aprons.

-- earthartandfoods.com

View The Box Whisperer's profile

The Box Whisperer

582 posts in 723 days


#15 posted 03-25-2014 12:03 AM

Mrjinx has a good point. If it were mine and I wanted a table Id frame out the top in maple. Id more likely let it stay where it is untill it speaks to me though. Amazing how much faster that happens when I go off my meds ;)

-- "despite you best efforts and your confidence that your smarter and faster than a saw blade at 10k rpm…. your not …." - Charles Neil

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