Hands-on Class Table

wickhamtableA couple of weeks back we had seven guys in to build a pier table. Everyone took off with their tables in various parts so that it would be easier to transport them home. Plus, there was additional work to be done.

I’ve received the first of what I hope to be seven six photos (no pressure, Mark) of completed tables. This one is from Dave Wickham. Nice.

Taking a class allows you to power through without making most of the regular mistakes along the way. And it builds confidence.

— Glen D. Huey

Sign up today for one of our hands-on classes – we have an Esherick Library Steps class and two sessions on molding planes with Matt Bickford upcoming for 2016, and a whole list of classes for 2017.

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5 thoughts on “Hands-on Class Table

  1. It may be a few weeks before I finish. I came home to 2 promised but unfinished wood projects, a new project regluing my father’s grandfather’s favorite chair (some urgency here…), and several new projects. And we are going on a belated anniversary trip with our kids and grandkids.
    I’ll get it though; it is sitting in a place that I cannot help but see it every day.

    I enjoyed the class. It really helped my confidence.

    1. Mike,

      Great to hear you enjoyed the class. You showed great skills with your work. I do expect that we’ll see your table completed in due time. If you run into questions, please don’t hesitate to call or email us. We’re always happy to help you over any hurdles you may come across. Happy belated anniversary. Enjoy the trip.

  2. I still enjoy seeing this piece. I finished it, per your suggestion, with boiled linseed oil followed by shellac. I am still learning finishing and have a question, or want reinforcement of what I think to be true.
    I understand neither the blo or shellac gives good protection. I also understand that shellac can be renewed by simply putting more on. And I understand that I can get a deeper looking finish using car buffing compound. Are these all true?

    If I buff the shellac now, after a half year, what do you recommend I put on to protect the finish? Or should I just leave a shellac finish?


    1. Mike,

      In the finish schedule you followed, the BLO is there to highlight figured grain and to help fill in wood pores. As for the shellac, it has protection and is great, in my opinion, as a furniture finish. If you, however, have a piece that receives heavy wear – kitchen table, dining table or chest used in a bedroom – where items are constantly being toss on or slide around, I’d suggest a more durable finish. I don’t think your card table falls into that category, but I’m not familiar with how you use your table. On high-use surfaces, I often use a pre-cat lacquer.

      Rubbing out shellac is going to smooth the surface, but it’s also going to raise the shine, which can be knocked down again by abrading the surface with #0000 steel wool. The sooner you buff the shellac the easier it will be – the longer it cures the harder it gets, to a point.

      On my card table, completed nearly 15 years ago, I finished with shellac and have not found it necessary to re-work the surface as of yet. As an added protection, you should maintain a coat of paste wax on your table. It’s from the wax that most of your water protection is gained.

      1. It will not get hard use, so I will leave it.
        Thanks for the quick response.

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