I had some vacation time schedule for the end of June this year, so what better to do than refinish our deck! We had built the deck in early 2016, left it unfinished all Spring and Summer long, with a southern exposure, which baked the wood to needing stain rather quickly. I used the water drop method to decide when the neck needed to be finished, and it was ready (Use a drop of water, if it beads up, then the original wood treatment is still working. If the water soaks in, it's time for stain).
At that time, we used a good (or so we thought) Olympic Elite Semi-Transparent stain to put down. The stain went on well with a nice light coat. The rest of the Fall the stain worked really well for us. Then came Winter, and eventually Spring, which is when we realized we had made a mistake...
After receiving the Ridgid table saw for Christmas, I knew I wanted to create something special for my parents. You can check out the blog post here describing the table saw gift! I decided to make them a cutting board from walnut, padauk, and purpleheart. I have three kids, so I wanted three stripes in the board to symbolize my parent's grandchildren!
So for quite some time, my wife had been trying to convince me that she needed more counter space and we needed to buy a new microwave and hang it above our range. The overall goal was to get our old microwave off of the counter.
I had been resistant to this change, seeing a little too much effort and too much tearing into the kitchen... But I knew I was in trouble when my parents bought a new house, and ended up with a brand new microwave, that would fit our space. The deal was struck and the microwave was going to get installed.
So my wife commissioned me to make a box for her to showcase her Lipsense products when she's going out on demo appointments. She had another box that was the appropriate size for what she wanted, but there were a couple changes that needed made. I grabbed the pencil and paper and got to work! Below is what we came up with.
Even though this wasn’t my first real project, it almost felt like it. This was my first cutting board, my first glue up, my first that I needed to sand like crazy and the first I needed to oil. I was excited for the task and ready for the challenges (which were plenty).
What I started with
I started with a clean, fresh plank of curly maple. As you can see, it was 2.64 square feet of 3/4”. I spent the $47 and used 2/3 of the board, more on that later.
I picked maple because of the look, the hardness, and the price. I was looking at some other more exotic woods, but landed on curly maple. Look at this grain! I loved the tiger like cross grain!