Creating a live edge black walnut coffee table All used materials and tools linked in the description Hello and welcome to this new project.
What you see here are two slabs of black walnut. As you can see these were already treated, they don’t grow like that in nature I had the pleasure to use a couple of really old machines, planers, jointers and sanding machines in a workshop close to where I have my place So let me go back in time and show you what we did there to prepare these slabs and after than I continue in my place. This is going to be a coffee table,
a pretty large coffee table for a friend of mine. Very similar to the ironwood dinner table project So it’s not going to be a lot of new things you see here, a couple though. If you ask yourself why is he creating another video showing the same, that’s very easy. I just record on video the stuff I do the stuff I like and so these kind of projects I like.
And that’s like different lumber So it looks and behaves different, and so I’m just recording what I do And there might be a lot of projects that are a repetition, that are similar. I don’t really mind about that it’s it’s just my hobby. So let me go back in time, and show you what we did to plane these slabs and polish them the way they are right now before I continue to glue them together First we ran the slabs off camera through a jointer and planer If you don’t know how to do this, there are plenty of videos on YouTube showing you how to do that Then we cut one live edge of each slab with a circular saw After that we spent some time deciding where to cut the slabs so the table is around 1 meter 50 long We then ran the slabs again through the jointer to make sure everything is straight Then we cut slots with a disc cutter router bit to prepare the slabs for gluing I prepared the clamps and applied a good layer of wood glue to the slabs I also inserted a small piece of wood into the slot between the slabs Okay, let’s have a look at this tabletop. Black walnut is one of the most gorgeous lumber out there. If you look at it like that you might think it looks just fine but once you put the oil on them the colors that pop out of black walnut are just amazing. You have everything from white to yellow to light brown, dark brown Sometimes even red It’s absolutely fantastic. This lumber here is in pretty good shape. There are only few cracks or branches, these kind of things. We have here one large crack that I will use as an opportunity to insert a couple of bowties Which is also something decorative.
Then there’s a bunch of small cracks here and there that we can fill with epoxy resin On the flip side, there are a couple of more complicated things that we can also fix with epoxy So for now I am going to plan these bowties to fix this crack maybe this crack over here, and then continue I started by marking the bowties by hand onto scrap pieces of black walnut Then cut both bowties with the bandsaw Using a belt sander I cleaned these up I marked the bowties on the slab where I will insert them I used hand carving tools to cut the holes into the lumber I then made sure the bowties fit the holes by sanding them to the appropriate sizes Then I started to remove the bark.
This is quite work intensive so account for some time I taped the bottom side of the tabletop with water resistant tape to start working with epoxy resin Then I used wood glue to attach the bowties and used a hammer to sink them in With a hand planer I removed most of the excess And then I sanded the rest down with an 80 grit paper I finished the bowties
As you might have seen I did it by hand There are plenty of videos showing how you can do this with a router so if you’re comfortable with the router go and check out these videos The reason I do it by hand is because the router is actually not my favorite tool, and I never really got friends with it I’m a little clumsy with it and I try to use it as little as possible so I think by hand is fine pretty fast, kind of more precise, so that’s why I do it by hand I taped the side below with water resistant tape and now we’ll start with the epoxy. I’ll use normal epoxy no colouring or anything like that Close the gaps and a few spots It’s actually a pretty nice slab. There are very few places to use the epoxy on. Mix your two-component epoxy really really well and long. There is nothing worse than epoxy resin that doesn’t cure With a heat gun, you can remove air bubbles from your epoxy I then ran the tabletop once more through the planer And used a sanding machine to sand it with 100 grit paper Okay, let me quickly explain to you what I just did. As you’ve seen I’ve run this tabletop through the planer again, and the reason was that after gluing there was a little gap about one millimeter which you can also deal with my sanding but it would take a lot of time to sand that down and because I have that fantastic planer at my disposal, I just decided to run it again through the planer and get rid of that gap But don’t think that you need to do that
If you want to do a project like that yourself and you don’t have that machine at hand you can do that by sanding and just investing more time After the planing I sanded the tabletop with this beautiful sanding machine that you’ve seen. It was a 100 grit paper It goes really fast. Its this incredible machine that I can use from that other workshop that is not mine That went pretty fast on both sides, with 100 grit paper Obviously that’s not enough for the upper side of the tabletop, and I will continue with an orbital sander there But for the bottom side that’s absolutely fine After that I filled the holes on the backside I filled with epoxy a couple small places and a large problem space that we had at the end here,
which was like a branch, it was a pretty soft lumber and like holes in it and so I filled all of that with epoxy resin which has the advantage that its stabilized, there shouldn’t be any issues So we are now on the bottom side working and finishing the bottom side. I will do that first. I will first sand the epoxy down with an 80 grit paper and Then not spend a lot more time in sanding and we’ll attach the aluminum bars prepare and attach aluminum bars to make sure this project doesn’t bend in any kind of way later on I always do that with tabletops because you can never guarantee how the different pieces of lumber bend with the humidity of the environment and all these kind of things and so that gives additional security that your tabletop stays straight, so let’s get that stared I placed the table legs to figure out where to best place the aluminum bars Then I cut the aluminum bars to the right length and drilled holes into the bars to attach them To attach the bars I use socket screws Using a router I rounded off the bottom side edges Now it was time to remove the rest of the bark and clean the live edges with a brush and sanding Then I sanded the bottom side with an orbital sander and 120 grit paper Then I cleaned up the surface with mineral spirit And applied a layer of mineral oil to make the grain pop Now it was time to apply polyurethane
I applied a total of three layers In between layer two and three I attached the socket screws to mount the table legs Then I flipped the tabletop and filled all the cracks with epoxy resin When the cracks are smallI like working with a syringe I sanded down the epoxy with an 80 grit paper Always use your mask when doing that because epoxy dust is toxic Then I rounded the upper side edges with a router And cleaned up the edges with a sander To sand the round edges use a simple sanding paper by hand The machine would destroy the nice curves you just make with your router Now it was time to sand the upper side with 120 and 180 grit paper And clean up all your edges with 180 grit paper To make sure there is nothing sharp where people can hurt themselves After everything is sanded clean your workpiece with mineral spirits Now I applied one layer of sanding primer. This helps you seal the wood and get the surface really smooth Once the primer was dry I sanded down the surface with 240 grit paper Once again clean with mineral spirits Then I applied a layer of mineral oil to make the grain pop. Look how beautiful this is becoming. After the oil soaked in start applying polyurethane with a brush I applied three layers for this project. After it tried sand your surface very very gently with a 400 grit paper by hand Don’t go crazy. You don’t want to damage anything Then I applied three layers of satin polyurethane spray paint I do this to remove brushstrokes and also to make it look satin At the end clean up the workpiece with a rag to remove dust particles that got stuck in your paint and clean up with mineral spirits Okay, that’s it. I think we’re done with that baby it turned out pretty nice. I think small simple nothing fancy Very nice to be able to work with slabs that are in that good shape So not a lot of work needed to be done with epoxy and other fancy things So let’s pack that up Transport it and then assemble it Bring it to its new home I hope you liked this video. If you did make sure to LIKE and subscribe so you don’t miss future videos. See you later.