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 Post subject: Butternut End Table
PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 8:26 am 
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This is just a simple end table I made for my sister. Actually, for my niece's play room.

Image

Nothing too fancy . . . as the title says, it's butternut. I've never worked with butternut before. It's fairly soft, but it's pretty.

Image

Image

I might have found a new favorite finish. I tried Arm-R-Seal (satin) for the first time. I like it! I did a wash coat of #1 shellac first.

Here's a shot of the top. I was able to get a nice 12" wide board, so I could do a nice 2 board glue up.

Image

Hmmm, that's about it. Pocket screws for the joinery and I used figure 8 fasteners for the top.

-Brian


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 8:34 am 
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Nice Brian,Your two top boards came out very nice,
looks close to book match .. I like the finish also.
Thanks for the pictures.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:21 am 
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Nice end table.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:42 am 
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Very nice Brian!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 10:58 am 
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Nice looking table! :-D
I've never used Butternut but, I agree that it has a beautiful grain to it.
I'm more of a "Butterfinger" guy my self..... Which reminds me, I haven't had a Butterfinger for quite awhile......Be right back!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Rog

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:33 am 
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Good work! The wood grain is interesting with those dark streaks. It looks like spalting in the first picture...


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:38 am 
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Very nice work!

The grain matches perfectly on the top, and the details are outstanding.


If I may offer 2 minor criticisms :

- The first is simply an opinion, so take it with a grain of salt ;) . The edge molding appears too sharp. I would ease the underside a slight bit. This would also tie the top to the apron more visually; with a sharp edge the top appears to "float" a bit over the structure to my eye.

- I tried Arm-R-Seal (satin) for the first time. I like it! I did a wash coat of #1 shellac first.
IIRC ArmRSeal is an oil/poly blend and like most wiping varnishes, well, dumb-proof ;) No reason in my mind to have to use shellac first.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:47 am 
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Beauty work and I love the look of butternut. 8) 8)

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:55 am 
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DMoening wrote:
Very nice work!

The grain matches perfectly on the top, and the details are outstanding.


If I may offer 2 minor criticisms :

- The first is simply an opinion, so take it with a grain of salt ;) . The edge molding appears too sharp. I would ease the underside a slight bit. This would also tie the top to the apron more visually; with a sharp edge the top appears to "float" a bit over the structure to my eye.

- I tried Arm-R-Seal (satin) for the first time. I like it! I did a wash coat of #1 shellac first.
IIRC ArmRSeal is an oil/poly blend and like most wiping varnishes, well, dumb-proof ;) No reason in my mind to have to use shellac first.


I like criticisms! Since I'm the engineer type, I could use all the design help I can get.

Do you think my top had too much of an overhang? I think it was an inch and a half on the sides, and almost 2 on the front and back. I made this table with the same dimensions as another table I made for my sister ( http://www.woodworking.org/InfoExchange ... highlight=) Though on that one, I beveled the underside of the top.

As far as the shellac . . . why do people use the wash coat with the "rude and crude" method? That's an oil wiping varnish right? (My after the fact excuse is that I was finishing this and cherry piece at the same time, so I had the shellac open anyway :D )

Again, thanks for the thoughts.

-Brian


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:11 pm 
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Do you think my top had too much of an overhang?

Actually, yes. But I didn't want to go overboard with the critiques :D

The overall size and shape are very pleasing to the eye.

On the table with the underside bevel, the extra overhang works with the general size/shape of the table. And with the bevel it is needed. Perhaps it is more pleasing to the eye because it lacks a lower shelf? hmmm, have to think about that.

However, in this current example, the extra overhangs detracts a bit from the overall unity of the piece.

(This is a hyper-critical view btw ;) )

Typical overhangs are around 1".

why do people use the wash coat with the "rude and crude" method? That's an oil wiping varnish right?

Uh, I don't know. :oops: I guess you're right about that.

IIRC Dave sanded (or buffed) almost all the shellac off prior to applying the topcoat (which [you're right] is probably an oil/poly mix).

In his case, the shellac is used to help "pop" the grain of the exotics in his pieces. In your case, I don't feel this step is needed. But, it certainly doesn't hurt.

And you wouldn't be the first person to use shellac because it's sitting there on the bench. :D

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 12:40 pm 
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DMoening wrote:
Perhaps it is more pleasing to the eye because it lacks a lower shelf? hmmm, have to think about that.


I think you've got it. Critiquing it myself . . . with the lower shelf more inset than the apron, you have a sort of "top heavy" issue. Small shelf, going up, bigger apron, and and even bigger top. Visually an upside down triangle.

Which is why I usually design these in Sketchup first. Which I did with this one. I originally had applied molding around the apron, which just didn't look right so I changed it to beading.

But yeah, I'm a chemical engineer and have always bemoaned my lack of artistic ability or "eye" for design. :-D

Thanks!

-Brian


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:24 pm 
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Gorgeous, Brian!!!

I guess I've never seen butternut before--I hope to get some for myself sometime after seeing it in the picture.

Verna

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:04 pm 
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Nice design :) especially the detail work around the skirt and top. Friendly, very comfortable looking, like a nice bowl of homemade chicken soup. :)

As long as you're soliciting design ideas, I'd have made the lower shelf a couple inches higher. I've used butternut myself once or twice and it is a nice wood to work with. Works well mixed with darker woods, etc. also, imho. Used it in a similar table a couple years ago (ugly legs, I know. Have to fix that one of these days ) - Image

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:34 pm 
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awesome looking table--- I like it just fine the way it is... but I'm no expert on preportion either :)

As for the shellac before any other finishes...I use shellac as a basecoat on nearly all my projects--but especially on projects with woods I'venever used before. It solves multiple issues for me fixing any problems with any woods that might react uncontrolably to oil/varnish mixes and ensures that the finish will get a good binding no matter how humid/dry/etc etc it is when I finish my piece. I also like the butt smooth feeling I get with a rude and crude finish and I'm not sure if that has to do with the shellac first part but it works for me....

just my .02 and again, I really like the table
Lawrence


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:39 pm 
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because of your post I am a butternut fan now. that wood is stunning. It is possible your craftsmanship played a part :wink:

Lovely very lovely

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:18 am 
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The table is beautiful. I guess I'm in the minority on the lower shelf height. I like it right where it is.

Love the butternut.

I understand on the sharp edge. But, I wouldn't have said so without someone pointing it out.

I also disagree on the over hang. It's not a visual problem for me.

I love it.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 9:37 am 
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love that top grain ! nice job !


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 06, 2010 3:57 pm 
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Brian - that's a wonderful table. I've never used butternut and find it to be very appealing. The grain and tone of the wood is very warm. Also, an outstanding job of grain match on the top - it's a flawless blend on your glue up.

I think Lawrence is right about the shellac wash coat. I have reached a point where I always put that on first regardless of the wood used in the project. It seems that without it the final appearance is muddy - the bit of shellac seals enough to bring out the true beauty of the wood. I also agree with the smoothness element. Without the shellac, it takes even more coats of the oil/poly mix to bring about an acceptable level of smoothness.

Keep up the good work.

Tom

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