I finally finished the year long coffee table project. Almost sounds like a suspense/thriller. Anyway, it’s a pretty nice table with a finish that I’m not completely happy about. The finish coat is a bit poorly done, I’m afraid, and working with the poplar proved to be a little more difficult than I imagined.
The stain was actually pretty nice, but I used a very diluted shellac wash coat, which worked perfectly with the birch ply top and pine edge banding, but needed to be a little less diluted on the poplar parts. Despite that I am pretty happy with the results as the wash coat REALLY brought that grain out (and darkened the green/brown of the poplar a little bit much).
Applying the polyurethane was a new thing for me. I’ve never really worked with oil based stains or top coats, and it was a real pleasure. The only issue I had with it was that it bubbled. I read that I needed to think the polyurethane in order to prevent that, but I’ve also heard my brush stroke could have an affect. I’m not sure what I could have done better, but it ruins the top coat for me (but no one else really cares). Anyway, I’ll post some photos as soon as I take them.
I’ve been working on a coffee table for about 6 months or some other ridiculous length of time, trying mostly to figure out the best way to accomplish some of my design issues. I designed and built this table mostly from a few sketches and rough dimensions in my head transferred to paper, which is what I tend to do when building things, and it makes for a mess at times.
Well, last night I finally completed this thing and it’s all together about as perfectly as my lack of precision allows (it’s not quite square but you can’t tell by looking), and now it is time to move to the finishing stage.
This is the part I dread the most, simply because I’m not very good at it. I’m trying to decide whether or not to use a gel stain, or some water based stain with a pre-conditioner before hand. One thing I do know, is that I’ll be putting on a fine coat of glossy poly-urethane, probably water based to give it a nice solid durable finish.
Anyway, I’ll have some photos of the finished, but not finished, table to post pretty soon.
My uncle gave me an old Craftsman 113.29991 10inch arbor table saw about a year ago. It’s been my go to tool since then, allowing me to create numerous items and do some simple ripping and cross cutting along the way.
Lately I’ve been making a go of some simple furniture, with my latest attempt being a coffee table. What has bothered me about this table saw, though was the surface rust that accumulated on the thing and that rust transferring to my wood stock. I decided that enough was enough and I was going to really give this thing a thorough cleaning and so that is what I have been doing for the past several days.
I did some research and discovered that this particular saw was built in 1961, sold by sears, not sure who built it, but due to it’s age I have to conclude that these old tools were truly built to last. It’s roughly 48 years old. That’s twice my age.
At any rate, I’ve disassembled the top, cleaned it of rust, buffed it, and have it oiled with WD-40 for now, and will be moving on to the arbor and body sometime this weekend. Most of it just needs a really thorough cleaning, so the restoration work is a cinch. This has been fairly well taken care of and maintained, although the screws for angle and height adjustments stick a bit.
It still has the rip fence, miter gauge, and one original extension wing as well as one that looks like somebody built their own and added it. It works well enough.
At the moment it is sitting on a home built stand–one that is VERY solidly built. However, I’m going to build a little rolling cabinet to make moving this table saw around just a little bit easier, but I have to wait until I have this back together (ironic).