Building reproduction furniture is safe. Queen Anne is Queen Anne. Shaker is Shaker. Federal is … well, you know. But when it comes to contemporary projects it’s a different story. The woodworker who builds something that’s not the everyday standard takes a chance. Some people like the results. Some do not.
If you’re looking at this project and are thinking that it’s a piece of crap, hang with me. There are techniques used in building this table that are not often shown in woodworking magazines. And there are techniques shown that differ from the accepted norm. Whether or not this is a piece you would build, there are things to discover and learn. If you like this table, welcome to the party.
As I wrestled this project from my mind, one thing that was clear was that I was going to use aluminum angle for the legs, and that I would simply bolt the legs to the carcase (Fig. 1). Also, I wanted a dark contrasting wood to bounce off the bright finish of the aluminum. There would be inlay, but I was not sure as to what that inlay would be. The wood, however, needed to stand on its own – no dyes or other chemicals would be applied.
I’ve used old-growth walnut in other projects, and the wood’s color when finished was very deep brown. But the walnut available today is far too light and not what I was after. Hello import. Wenge was my first thought, but sometimes the tan streaks are too much and the dark brown doesn’t stand out. Plus, the expense for even a small table was more than I wanted.
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