Archive for August, 2012

Table finishing using hand planes

Finished table

Recently I’ve been making a very large table for a new shop opening soon on Broadway Market in east London. The brief was for a table 3.2m by 1.2m. Initially they wanted it made from scaffold boards, but we discussed materials and decided to go with reclaimed Pitch Pine.

To finish the table top, I went old school, using hand planes. It’s been a while since I’ve taken on finishing a table this way and it was a very satisfying process…. Now for some woodwork geek-out….

First thing to do was to sharpen up all 5 of the blades for my Stanley No. 6 plane on an oil stone to razor sharpness and to sharpen the blades for my block planes.

I made diagonal strokes across the top to take off any high spots, making the top as flat as possible, using the Stanley plane. Then I made long strokes with the grain with the block plane set very fine.

I used wire wool to rub the surface using ’00′ grade. This process takes off any wood fibres sticking up and provides a gentle polishing of the surface.

Nearing the end, I chose to oil the top with ‘Osmo oil‘. A lovely natural oil. (Nearly) finally, after 24hrs, I further polished the table with ’0000′ wire wool and oil again.

This process I will repeat another 4 times to build up a generous coating of the top over a few weeks.

After doing all that, I created a custom made steel table frame.

Reclaimed Paint?

paint

For most of us painting means rolling up our sleeves on our weekends, holidays or/and days of to get the job done. And it can be a costly business.

If you’re in London and want some cheaper options, I often pass by a rack like this each time I go into Leylands diy shops. Paints that have been wrongly mixed or not collected and are at bargain prices. Some colours are a bit garish, but could liven up the front room, or breathe new life into a piece of furniture. £5 a pot for some! no complaints from me.