Author Topic: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table  (Read 1334 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« on: October 08, 2020, 04:41 PM »
This past summer I went with my wife for a couple of days to Western New York to stay with her boss, who had fled the city amidst all the Covid stuff and bought a country house, which came with a decent sized timber-framed barn that went back to the mid-19th century.  Unfortunately the roof had started to collapse, and since there were not the resources to rehab it, I was invited to salvage whatever wood I wanted.

The real prize in the barn is probably the 12x12 hewn beams that make up the structure, some of which are over 30 feet long.





But getting at those would have required machinery and a crew, so I decided to go for more accessible material that had been used to frame out a room in one corner of the barn, which included 6 ten foot long 8/4 planks, some of which were as wide as 16"



I still had to work pretty delicately, taking out one part of the exterior wall so I could even access the ends of some the boards, and then for everything else, working very carefully when prying them off so as not to split the wood, which was fastened by the old style square nails.

I took as much as I could reasonably and safely fit in my pickup for a several hour highway trip back to the city, ending up with a pretty decent mix of 5/4 and 8/4 boards.





I cleaned everything up with the brush sander so I could get a better look at the wood, which as best as I can tell is some kind of pine or spruce, but old-growth given how densely compact the growth rings are



and after spotting some bug holes, I treated them all with a Borax solution to kill any pests that might still be there, and then let the wood sit in my loft for a few weeks.

In the interim I got a commission to do a rustic type of coffee table, so I figured this would be the perfect material to use.  I had originally considered preserving some of the patina'ed board faces for parts of the table, but they were so splintery that I decided to plane all the material smooth.  That meant that I had to remove all traces of embedded metal, which I did using a metal detector and this mechanical nail removing tool I picked up a while back after seeing it in use at a reclaimed lumber spot.  The sleeve actually slides up and down the body and so you pound it with the jaws slightly open around the nail to create enough force to sink them into the wood, then rock it back and use the leverage of that crescent shape to pull out the embedded nail.  It does leave a rectangular perforation in the board, but it works like magic to extract nails that are otherwise inaccessible.



 

I had enough material to go through that jointing by hand didn't really make sense, so I rigged up a platform to flatten one face of the boards with the woodpeckers slab jig (in the meantime cut down to rough length)



Then sent them through the planer to get the 2" boards down to about 1 5/8 and the thinner wood to around 7/8.



The specs for the coffee table were pretty loose -- just something that was 36"x36" with a flippable top for internal storage, with the rest of the details left up to me.  So I'll go through in the next post the actual build.
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 645
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2020, 05:19 PM »
It sad to see structural buildings like that go down. The work and craftsmanship that has gone into barns and sheds previously is phenomenal. We also see a lot of these abandoned, and later to be knocked down in order to be replaced by buildings crated with lesser quality craftsmanship in fast grown wood, thin steel, plaster and plastic. Urgh!

In the UK there are several who reclaim these buildings and giving them new life, restored to a new life as a classic or contemporary building to live in. I’ve seen one tribute to an old barn that they built a new house inside the barn, creating open spaces inside the barn as an outside space inside the barn. Got it? [big grin]

I really hope we can see more of these rescues here as well. I’ll be looking out for it.
I’m starting a renovation and rescue of my 100 yrs old combination building, where more living space is created, a long with a woodshop space and a spare garage.

Good thing though, that most of the wood can be reclaimed and used over.
I’m sure the table will be proud  [wink]
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Offline c_dwyer

  • Posts: 164
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2020, 10:15 PM »
Hi Edward:

Very nice find and opportunity to salvage.  Our family also has a mid-1800's farm in central NY, and the wood salvaged from both the barn and sheathing under the siding of the house fit your description and your pictures.  I can't say for sure what you have based on appearance, except for the board leaning up against your planer. It matches both the grain pattern and color of wood that I've since been able to have identified as eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis).

Looking forward to more pictures of your build(s).

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2020, 10:44 PM »
Somewhat disappointingly I had ended up having to rip all the wide boards down the middle, which had originally been plainsawn, due to deep cracks along the length that would have compromised the strength of the wood.  So instead of just using a couple of boards for the table top, I had to edge join multiple pieces to form two separate 18" wide blocks




I made sure to glue up these pieces at the start of the build, so I could give them some time to settle from the sudden influx of glue moisture and so remove whatever cupping would develop as a result.

The base of the table was just a straightforward frame and panel construction, with 1 1/2" boards dominoed for the frame members and a single piece planed down to 1/2" for the floating panel set inside a dado:




I had at first tried to produce bookmatched panels through resawing some of the thicker boards



Problem was that I had already set aside most of the good boards for the top and frame members, so what was left were those with pretty advanced splitting, such that once they were resawn and planed down to 1/2" they became very unstable.  I ultimately only got one bookmatched panel out of it, and decided just to plane down some of the 5/4 instead for the rest rather than waste any more thick boards.

I joined the two frames together with 4 rails after producing the dado for the other two floating panels with the router and edge guide





For the insides I planed down some of the thinner boards and fit them together with a tongue and groove made with a combination plane





Nice thing about working with the plane is how aggressively it can cut, and overall it was much faster than it would have been to set everything up on the router table.

Created a frame along the bottom of the case for support, then nailed in the floorboards:







Since the basic design was so plain, I decided to augment it with moulding on all the edges, so next up will be the creation of the trim.


 
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2020, 11:30 PM »
For the panel moulding, I started with a double rabbet bit on 3/4 stock



Then screwed around with a variety of other smaller additional profiles until I finally hit upon a combination of a 1/4" beading bit and two passes from a 1/8" roundover






For the base moulding and then the trim around the top edge, I started with thicker 1" stock and ran a large ogee bit, the finished off one with the lower half of an architectural moulding bit and for the other a large bullnose bit



The architectural moudling bit left a slight lip between the two profiles, so I had to clean it up by hand with a rabbet plane



To make the flippable top, I affixed a center rail to the top of the case with dominoes.  I used the trim stop to center and balance the machine on the vertical plunge into the casing.   I oriented the dominoes parallel to the rail and used the wider setting so that I didn't have to be super exact on aligning the mortises, and could adjust the rail to center it on the casing.





After having first removed most of the waste on the drill press, I worked with a bottom bearing flush trim bit to rout out holes for concealed barrel hinges in the rail as well as either side of the top.  I worked off of a template that I had made with the Shaper Origin that locked in the spec-ed spacing of the holes 16.5mm from the face edge.  Since the hole was precisely centered on the template, I could use the same template for all the holes without worrying about any misalignment.







I had experimented with a couple of different hinge types after initially thinking the barrel hinges wouldn't be sturdy enough, but it turns out the barrel hinges are perfect for this application.

After attaching all the moulding all that was left was just a bunch of fine tuning via sanding and planing, along with installing some adjustable feet on the bottom so that the table floats just above the floor, and finally adding a few butterfly inlays where there was splitting on the ends of the boards. 



It's basically done now, and I'm just working on selecting a color for the stain.  If it were going to be in my home I would probably just stick with a clear coat, but client wants to experiment with white and gray tones, so there is still a bit more work to do, but the construction part is done:



As you can see below, I got lucky with the grain on one particular side, where the plainsawn cathedral grain of the panel seems to continue into the top rail, even though it's two separate boards. I tried to beef up the effect even further by selecting for that side a pieces of base moulding where the grain ran parallel to the face.



Here in the next one you can see how the one bookmatched panel turned out.  The effect is pretty inconspicuous due to how light the grain is, and really only noticeable in the mirroring of the nail holes on the left.  If and when a stain is applied, the bookmatch effect will probably disappear almost completely, so in the end it's not really a loss that I wasn't able to do it for the other panels as I had originally planned.





« Last Edit: October 09, 2020, 08:49 AM by ear3 »
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2020, 11:36 PM »
@c_dwyer I've never worked with Hemlock before, but looking at the pictures of it now, it could very well be that.  It didn't really have a pine or spruce smell to it, but that was the closest I could think of based upon the grain and coloring.  Thanks for the identification!

Hi Edward:

Very nice find and opportunity to salvage.  Our family also has a mid-1800's farm in central NY, and the wood salvaged from both the barn and sheathing under the siding of the house fit your description and your pictures.  I can't say for sure what you have based on appearance, except for the board leaning up against your planer. It matches both the grain pattern and color of wood that I've since been able to have identified as eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis).

Looking forward to more pictures of your build(s).
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Offline Getmaverick

  • Posts: 176
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2020, 08:11 AM »
Looks like Douglas Fir to me.

Offline mrFinpgh

  • Posts: 419
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2020, 08:51 AM »
Very nice. I especially like the moldings around the panel. I think you certainly achieved the 'look' here.

Regarding finishes - I know Rubio has some white pigmented finishes that might fit the bill here.  If you're doing a film finish, lockwood has some gray dyes which seem to be intentionally made for the weathered look.   Charles Neil mentions them in one of his books.

Where in WNY was this?  There are some great old buildings in the region.

Offline FestitaMakool

  • Posts: 645
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2020, 12:58 PM »
That came out very nice!
And the fact that is made of reclaimed wood makes it even better  [smile]

Smart design too, like it!
“The Stig” Yes, it is true, at least some part of it..
“If you have an old Land Rover and a fit wife, you’re most likely always busy”

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2020, 07:18 PM »
Thanks @mrFinpgh place was over in Tioga County.
 
Very nice. I especially like the moldings around the panel. I think you certainly achieved the 'look' here.

Regarding finishes - I know Rubio has some white pigmented finishes that might fit the bill here.  If you're doing a film finish, lockwood has some gray dyes which seem to be intentionally made for the weathered look.   Charles Neil mentions them in one of his books.

Where in WNY was this?  There are some great old buildings in the region.
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Offline John1102

  • Posts: 53
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2020, 09:15 PM »
Great project, those old boards look awesome when refinished. Nice posting with pictures [smile].

Offline jcrowe1950

  • Festool Dealer Affiliate
  • *
  • Posts: 126
    • Woodcraft Chattanooga, TN
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2020, 10:11 PM »
That was a brilliant project....I really like the fact that you use a mix of power and hand tools. Good job young man....
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline ear3

  • Posts: 4177
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2020, 11:48 PM »
Worked out the finish for the piece, or rather, carried out the wishes of the client under protest.  The base actually came out pretty good initially.  Used light gray Osmo color oil on the base, which worked beautifully -- kind of a sea-foam gray which contrasted wonderfully with the remaining visible orange/brownish rings of the wood.  But it wasn't white enough for the client, and so I added a few coats of whitewash to lighten it up a bit and make the finish more distressed.  The result is not as nice as just the plain Osmo, but it still more or less works.  The real shame here is the top, which they insisted be reddish-orange.  They're trying to match some existing furniture in their home which has that color mix, and despite my saying that it would probably be better to finish the top and the base the same way, they insisted that color be added to the top.  So I tinted it with Osmo cherry color oil.  The result is kind of carnivalesque, but they claim this is exactly what they wanted, so I'm not going to argue.













« Last Edit: October 10, 2020, 11:52 PM by ear3 »
Kapex KS 120 w/UG Cart and Extensions • CXS Set • T 18+3 w/Centrotec Installer's Set • PDC 18/4 • TID 18 • TS 75 • TSC 55 • HKC 55 w/250, 420 and 670 FSK rails • Carvex 420 w/Accessory Kit • Domino 500 Set • Domino 700 XL • OF 2200 w/Base Accessory Kit • OF 1400 • OF 1010 • MFK 700 EQ Set • LR 32 • MFS 400 w/2000, 1000, and 700 extensions • Rotex 90 • Rotex 150 • LS 130 • ETS-EC 150/5 • ETS-EC 150/3 • Pro 5 LTD • RTS 400 • RAS 115.04 • RS 2 • HL 850 • Vecturo OS 400 • AGC 18-115 • CT 26 w/BT module • CT Sys w/Long-Life Bag • MFT/3 • STM 1800

Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 1271
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2020, 06:17 AM »
Very nice Edward. It turned out well. Nicely documented as always.

Ron

Offline greg mann

  • Posts: 1894
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2020, 09:41 AM »
Very nice, Edward. I really appreciate the documentation.
Greg Mann
Oakland, Michigan

Offline Cheese

  • Posts: 7782
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2020, 10:53 AM »
Nice job...and nice documentation Edward.  [big grin]

Like you, I would have used just the gray Osmo on the entire unit. [smile]  It would have been interesting to see how the butterflies on the top were highlighted.

Offline Vondawg

  • Posts: 362
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2020, 05:22 PM »
I too appreciate the story and pics...very nice job! Almost didn’t want to see it finished.. but alias we are hired to do the work and for someone else’s tastes....and Ive always been thankFul of that...great post !
There are no mistakes....just new designs.

Offline Jasonj888

  • Posts: 112
    • Blog about woodworking and family life.
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2020, 05:45 PM »
Great work! I agree with you on the finish - I would prefer the more gray look. Or even just a single color. Can't argue with the client though.

Offline sammy.se

  • Posts: 10
Re: Reclaimed lumber flip-top coffee table
« Reply #18 on: October 13, 2020, 09:11 AM »
That is very nice, well done!

I actually like the final colours/finish (although I didn't see the pre-whitewash).
That kind of pastel shade with natural wood contrast is very 'English Country' style.