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Fun Weekend Project

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Scott French, Jul 23, 2005.


  1. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    A friend of mine was here showing off some keyboards he picked up at a local thrift shop this morning. He told me about a solid slab table he saw while he was there. It was pretty cheap so I decided to go check it out. The slab looked like it was chainsawed and coated in about 1/8" of some kind of varnish. It happened to be 50% off furniture day so it went from $26 to $13. We grabbed it and took it home. We took a scraper and sander to it so we could check out what was underneath. It looks just like another block of redwood I have so we decided to "process" it. First we cut off the live edges and took it down to about 15" wide, then we ran it through the planer. It was a pretty good find, there are some cool figured burly/flame/birdseye (?) kind of spots. $13 and an hour or work got us a board that roughed down to about 14.5" wide, 60" long and 1.75" thick. This friend just put in an order for a guitar a week or two ago so we'll probably use this for the main body wood. He found it and really likes it so I'm excited to use this for his project.

    Ian with a scraper checking out the figure:
    [​IMG]

    Cutting off the first live edge:
    [​IMG]

    Live edge gone:
    [​IMG]

    After planing:
    [​IMG]

    Figured spots with naptha:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    Jesus, Scott: that's sick! Congratulations on a great find!
     
  3. ArtisFallen

    ArtisFallen

    Jul 21, 2004
    that really is a terrific find. i only wish the yard sales thrift shops and flea markets out my way had things like this tucked away for us wood workers to go bonkers over
     
  4. Worshiper

    Worshiper

    Aug 13, 2004
    New York
    WOW!! Congrats on a great find. Can we see some more pictures of that wood?

    And did you just take a complete gamble on that table or did you know what kind of wood it was before you baught it?
     
  5. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Worshiper, It was pretty thickly coated and dark, but being in Northern California, the size, coloring and rough cuts pretty much screamed "cheesy redwood table". I didn't know there was any fancy figure there although it did look like the grain was funky. As we were checking out my friend said he could see some kind of weird bug holes. I thought that might be a little suspect since redwood is usually pretty bug resistant. For $13 I would use this for painted bodies if the wood didn't look good so it made sense to pick it up just for fun.
     
  6. Cerb

    Cerb

    Sep 27, 2004
    Indiana
    Very, very nice. I've been searching through Goodwill stores lately, but all I can seem to find is pressed wood furniture :-\.
     
  7. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Here's one more:
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Cool find. I would've bought the board too but never expected to find what you did.

    Here's a tip for you guys in California especially but the entire US if you know what you're looking for...

    Years ago, redwood was the wood of choice for signmakers to create relief carved and sandblasted signs. Redwood resisted rot, and had the grain structure that blasted well - especially when it was quartersawn. These signs were usually made up from boards that were 8"+ in width and usually 2"+ in thickness. However, they were rarely cut into further than about 1/2". So, if you find old dimensional wood signs that are better than 20 years old, you can bet that they are redwood and you can get some killer stock from them.
     
  9. ArtisFallen

    ArtisFallen

    Jul 21, 2004
    that's a cool tip. i'll keep my eye out from now on

    mental note: old signs might = good wood
     
  10. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. tjclem

    tjclem Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Very very nice!
     
  12. Worshiper

    Worshiper

    Aug 13, 2004
    New York
    guess who will be checking the local thrift stores more often.
    I'l give you a hint. His name starts with a "W" and ends in "Orshiper."
    :D
     
  13. teej

    teej

    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    My grandma has a huge slab table. It's easily big enough for two bodies or several necks. It's core is burl walnut, and then it has burl maple around the edges. Not big enough for a body, of course, but with a little patience and a steady hand, you could probably get two necks out of it.
     
  14. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    That looks awesome. Great find. Are you the big dude pushing the piece through the bandsaw? I've got that same bandsaw (Grizzly 15").
     
  15. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    US-NY-NYC
    You don't want to use any kind of burl for necks. To unstable, and low in strength. Unless perhaps Larry from Gallery acrylized it for you.
     
  16. Scott French

    Scott French Dude Supporting Member

    May 12, 2004
    Grass Valley, CA
    Yep, that's me Bud. Ian's girlfriend took that pic and I think she changed modes in the middle of a picture. The image got all messed up and made me look 8 feet tall or something. I think Ian is around 6' and I'm 6'3".

    Most the bigger power tools in my shop are green. I'd like to be able to afford some nicer stuff someday but the longer I own these I realize I probably wont need much more.
     
  17. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass


    Nothing wrong with the green stuff. Have you tried the Wood Slicer blades?