Custom Wood Furniture Chattanooga TN
How to Make an End Grain Butcher Block Cutting Board
Vinny's Pro Shop - Shop Tour
One of my favorite woodworking projects is a butcher block end-grain cutting board. Im not sure if its the “back to basics” simplicity or just the fact that it is one of the most useful projects a woodworker can make, but something keeps bringing me back for more. A custom cutting board makes a great gift and many woodworkers make them in batches every Holiday Season. And if you are relatively new to woodworking, this is a great project to hone your milling, glue-up and tablesaw skills. I’ll cover the preparation and construction of the board itself, as well as the various finishing options available. I’ll also discuss how to maintain the board and keep it looking fresh for years to come!
Although I stopped actively pursuing clients for my custom furniture nearly three years ago, I do have a few special people that I continue to work for. One of those folks is the man responsible for the “Summer of Wenge” as some of you old-timers may recall. This guy has an affinity for fine hardwoods and has an eye for unique pieces. Most times he has a very specific idea of what he wants, but I do have some influence over the design.
The coolest part about this process is the challenge that collaboration brings. Making a piece of furniture for myself is rather easy. My personal tastes influence every decision I make and I simply build to my liking. But building within the confines of someone else’s tastes can be quite difficult because I am forced to differentiate between bad design and what is simply a unique set of personal preferences. So its important not to give in to that knee-jerk reaction that says, “That wouldn’t go in my house!” If you can see beyond the initial visual shock and analyze the piece within its own world and on its own merits, I think you are one step further on your path to “open-minded” design.
Now I am a relative noob when it comes to traditional design theory, so I am probably too open-minded for my own good. But personally, I would rather start with a wild set of design ideas and slowly but surely contain and restrict them, as opposed to starting with a strict set of design rules, and slowly learning how to branch out and become flexible. This way just sounds like more fun to me!
I feel a music analogy coming on! As a drummer, I played in numerous bands for several years before I started taking lessons. At first, the lessons were difficult and the rigidity of the play style I was being taught didn’t seem to help me much in my live gigs. That is until one day, things just clicked. Suddenly, the rudiments I had been perfecting during lessons found their way into the creative side of designing a beat for a song. The end result? I was a better, more creative drummer. On the flip side of things, I had a friend who was classically trained on the piano. As hard as we tried to get him to play in our band, it just never worked. He couldn’t do anything without a sheet of music in front of him.
I suppose the point of this article is just to make you think a little. I am currently working on a new piece for the customer I mentioned above, and it got me thinki...
I have been watching you from the beginning, the show and your work are great! We here at PCWWC are a family owned and operated custom furniture and cabinetry company. We work out of a single car garage and recently have built a 10×16 dedicated finishing shop. We only spray water born materials and use a Fuji HVLP Q4 spraying system. We upgraded the heart of our shop last year to a PM2000, love it! We roll with a Dewalt planer and a Ridgid 6″ jointer. The jointer is soon to be up graded to a bigger model. As you can see in the pictures I have a 100 bd/ft of red oak for a kitchen refacing job we are working on. You and Matt have gotten me into hand planes, I am trying to hone my skills. We use a 1963 Craftsman 18″ radial arm saw for cross cutting our rough material. We do all of your dovetailing with the Leigh Super 24. We just purchased a CMT 333 for boring hinges. Drilling pocket hole screws are done with the Kreg master system. Enjoy the tour!