Looking for ideas for my new coffee table project! - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 8 Old 11-19-2015, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 4
View Wooduniverse's Photo Album My Photos
Looking for ideas for my new coffee table project!

Hi all! I'm VERY new here and also very new to the idea of wood working! I did it as a child with family and loved it. I am finally in a place where I can do it again!

My first project is to build a coffee table. I was given a great (or at least I think it's great!) slab of wood from a fallen tree, and I instantly wanted to make a table out of it.

I'm here with a few questions. First, I noticed it's a bit bent. I can push down in the middle and make it flat, but I'm wondering what the best steps for a man with little tools to level it. It's still VERY wet. Got it yesterday and it leaves your hand wet when taking it away.

Second, do you keep the bark on, or take it off? I have seen pictures with both, I'm wondering what your thoughts are.

I know I need to sand it and clean it up, and noticed some nicks from the saw. Best ideas to get it nice and flat? I'm going to attach some pictures. Feel free to give me any advice you'd like! I'm open to learning! Thanks!
Attached Images
  
Wooduniverse is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 Old 11-20-2015, 09:57 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Midwest
Posts: 1,883
View woodchux's Photo Album My Photos
First, Welcome here to this very friendly WW forum where there is always room for one more. IMO it appears that your wood slab is too wet to work with - especially when it leaves your hand wet! Do not be too anxious to work on that slab as it needs to be dried out flat for a few months before attempting to give you a smoother surface. As for the bark, when it is dried it may help you decide as to save it or take it off. Be safe.
woodchux is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to woodchux For This Useful Post:
Wooduniverse (11-20-2015)
post #3 of 8 Old 11-20-2015, 03:19 PM
Senior Member
 
was2ndlast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 821
View was2ndlast's Photo Album My Photos
If you are looking to have a dead flat coffee table after it dries you should see if you can find a shop or hardwood retailer that has a drum sander to flatten it. Or you can handplane that gently instead...maybe a scraper plane (stanley 88) so you don't get tear out around all that figure. Go for it, that will be a unique top.
was2ndlast is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to was2ndlast For This Useful Post:
Wooduniverse (11-20-2015)
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 8 Old 11-20-2015, 03:19 PM
Senior Member
 
was2ndlast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 821
View was2ndlast's Photo Album My Photos
Stanley 88
was2ndlast is offline  
post #5 of 8 Old 11-20-2015, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 4
View Wooduniverse's Photo Album My Photos
thanks for the advice everyone! I guess i don't really care if it's PERFECTLY flat, but yes i figured it'd probably be easier to do what youve suggested! So you say it will take a few months to dry? totally fine with me, as it gives me some time to learn more about it before diving in!

is it best to let it dry on its own? I have it placed flat in a dry basement. anything i should be doing in the meantime to prepare it for its future life as my new coffee table? thanks guys!
Wooduniverse is offline  
post #6 of 8 Old 11-30-2015, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 4
View Wooduniverse's Photo Album My Photos
Hello all! I have a bit of an update,

So the slab has split in half from the drying process. I'm sort of into it - maybe rethinking it as two end tables, or was also thinking of gluing one end and using colored resin to fill in the others. I will take some photos when I am home. What type of sand paper is best used to smoothing it out? sorry if im asking lame questions, just trying to learn about the process!
Wooduniverse is offline  
post #7 of 8 Old 11-30-2015, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 4
View Wooduniverse's Photo Album My Photos
Here it is currently. Any people out there with an eye for potential ideas for this?
Attached Images
 
Wooduniverse is offline  
post #8 of 8 Old 12-01-2015, 12:54 AM
Senior Member
 
kelsochris's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 226
View kelsochris's Photo Album My Photos
It looks like as it started to dry and the fibres started to shrink it released the stress by splitting. The same thing will happen with logs if they aren't sawn into lumber soon enough. Then it is called checking and it can also occur in the ends of boards as end grain releases moisture faster than edge grain. It looks like your slab was only an inch or so thick which is thin for a slab like that. You could salvage the slab by sealing the end grain with some canning wax suspended in mineral spirits. You could make a two level coffee table.
kelsochris is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Build Your Own Router Table treewok2512 Power Tools & Machinery 23 09-16-2018 12:47 PM
Ok whom has built a coffee table with a lifting top? Tree Hugger General Woodworking Discussion 3 09-06-2016 10:51 PM
Tabletop Coffee Table Help... SDWoodworkgin Design & Plans 3 11-10-2015 02:39 PM
Wolfcraft 6157 router table. dbhost Tool Reviews 2 10-02-2015 07:22 PM
Dismantle Coffee Table apoorv1in Project Showcase 4 09-17-2015 10:19 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome