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Forum topic by Joshua Oehler posted 08-04-2014 03:36 PM 882 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Joshua Oehler

169 posts in 1157 days


08-04-2014 03:36 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I have been trying to decide for a month or so now how I am going to go about building a new entertainment center for my living room. I have finally decided that I am going to go with a maple/cherry combo. Although I wish I had the money to do the entire thing out of solid wood it is just not going to be feasible for me. I am going to have to use ply for the case work. My problem is I would really like to incorporate curly maple & curly cherry into the project. Whenever I see furniture pieces that use these woods they are typically done completely with these woods or just as an accent piece here or there. What I am thinking is to do the case work out of ply but using curly for all of the wood faces and door/drawers ect. I am worried about this not looking right though and it possibly looking better out of just straight clear wood. Does anything have any thoughts/suggestions on this or maybe some pictures that show this being done?

-- - "But old news can change, as memories float downstream. So don't judge me by my failures, only by my dreams"


9 replies so far

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Earlextech

1159 posts in 2157 days


#1 posted 08-04-2014 04:01 PM

Look at anything on my projects page! This is standard practice for those of us in the real world. Completely solid wood projects are few and far between. Especially in casework like you are describing. Ply for the boxes and solid wood for the frame, doors, drawer fronts and trim.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

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Joshua Oehler

169 posts in 1157 days


#2 posted 08-04-2014 04:12 PM

I totally get that. I did cabinet work for around 12 years. My problem is more along that lines of will it look funny with the ply areas being normal Maple/Cherry with all of the face frames/drawers/doors being curly maple/cherry. I am afraid of it making the exposed ply parts look unfinished.

-- - "But old news can change, as memories float downstream. So don't judge me by my failures, only by my dreams"

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timbertailor

1592 posts in 890 days


#3 posted 08-04-2014 04:22 PM

Veneers are your friend!

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1836 days


#4 posted 08-04-2014 04:39 PM

I built an entertainment center piece (more like a tiered shelving unit) out of solid maple. It was one of my first projects. Looking back, if I were to do it again, I would definitely use plywood for the majority of the work. Much easier to work with when you get to panels that size.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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Earlextech

1159 posts in 2157 days


#5 posted 08-04-2014 05:07 PM

You can get curly ply, but not at the box stores, or lay up your own veneer. Lots of work and expense that probably won’t be noticed by anyone but you. Also, depending on your design, you only really have two end panels exposed. Make those out of curly ply or veneer, much less expense than the entire unit.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

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firefighterontheside

13518 posts in 1323 days


#6 posted 08-04-2014 05:44 PM

If it were me, I would include some curly stuff if you like but make the rest of it about your joinery and do that well. That’s what you will be most proud of and people will notice more than whether it was all curly or not. Also I would be afraid that once all the curly stuff got together it would not all match. Either way it sounds like a great piece and fun to build.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

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CharlesA

3025 posts in 1264 days


#7 posted 08-04-2014 05:57 PM

On a piece that is that big, I think curly can get overwhelming (I know not everyone agrees with me). And I love curly maple. I would use ply and then use the curly a bit sparingly, but to really good effect.

Hood manufacturing in Louisville will sell almost any kind of ply with a $100 order. Don’t know if there is one near you or another source.

The other part of me also thinks that you have two conflicting visions: using ply for ease and cost and maximizing curly lumber which is expensive and hard to find in ply—maybe the veneer is your savior.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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Yonak

979 posts in 987 days


#8 posted 08-04-2014 06:50 PM

Joshua, I like the maple / cherry combination. In your shoes I would go with figured wood for the framing that shows the most, but not for the panels. I made a TV stand from maple and cherry last year .. no fancy woods, though.

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Joshua Oehler

169 posts in 1157 days


#9 posted 08-04-2014 09:34 PM

Thanks everyone. I know veneering the exposed panels would be the way to go but as has been said I don’t want want the curly woods to be too much. I think the more it has the less it will stand out. I also have never worked with veneer nor do I know anyone in my area that has. Watching edited videos online are one thing but 99% of them are in a “If everything goes perfect” scenario. You don’t get to usually see all of the problems that were edited out. They are a great tool for learning but nothing beats seeing someone 2ft in front of you do it with your own eyes. I would much rather play with veneer for the first time on something small like a box or something.
My plan was to only do the face frames and door frames out of the curly material which would not cost me that much more in lumber, but I am still undecided. The only other thought I had was to do the opposite. Make the entire thing face frames and all out of regular Maple/cherry but then have the drawer fronts & door panels be curly. I could probably do that for less money and may look better

-- - "But old news can change, as memories float downstream. So don't judge me by my failures, only by my dreams"

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