Some where out here we did some pictures of a walnut slab, we were doing for a client in NY, and I had explained that I had coated it in the 2 part pour on epoxy, I did this to encapsulate the slab , to eliminate as much as possible any expansion and contraction, basically seal it off totally from the environment, the problem with this is that the epoxy being a super high gloss, it looks like plastic, and no one likes that.
The issue with looking like plastic is sheen more than thickness, here are some photos I took as I was finishing it up, I sanded the epoxy with some 180 grit to be sure it was flat and level, yep 180 , then I used a 320 sanding pad to go over the edges and ensure it was all smooth and sanded, epoxy dries hard , and all but impenetrable , so I wanted to be sure I had a good scratch to afford a good mechanical bond, then just to further ensure my bond with the water base finish I will be top coating with, I sprayed it with a quick coat of 1 lb shellac… just to be sure. when it was dry I gave it a quick scuff sand with a 320 grit sanding sponge, and applied a satin topcoat ( General Finishes High Performance), now it has a nice satin sheen and looks like wood , not plastic, again its the sheen.
The satin sheen over the high gloss diffuses the light, and gives it that soft , natural wood look, it looks great, hopefully today the acrylic will be here and we will install it to make a simple clear base, , we want the wood to be the total focus… and it sure will be
Again this is a technique I have used often on big natural slabs , some quite large indeed http://antiquesbuiltdaily.com/Website%20Photos/August24/Desks/partnersdesk1large.jpg while not the normal finishing schedule, it sure does preserve these big slabs, which are prone to splitting and checking, over time, rarely are they really dry , usually a higher moisture content than conventional lumber , so locking it in and stabilizing it is a good thing to do, certainly not cheap , but oh so effective, I am not sure how many exactly I have done , guessing 30 or 40, and never an issue,.
Big slabs usually also have some checking and defects as well, the epoxy will seep into the checks and defects and solidify and fill them, while not changing the appearance, it will fill a large knot hole , I have actually plugged the knot from the bottom ( big one), and added some small vine and other natural wood debris and filled it, it looked like a petrified piece of resin with the added in’s in it, pretty cool , and made to last,,, just thought I would pass along some of my “outside the box” means of dealing with something a bit different…
Well the slab is done,( except for the acrylic) blanket chest is done, so as soon as the acrylic is done, all the NY stuff is ready to go, but we still have some projects to get done, for pick up on our return, still alot to do, got one show filmed yesterday, it was simply picking the cherry and getting it glued together, the whole show, so many of you have ask me to go over this in detail, you got it, I also am putting together a router bit thing for those you want to do the desk and secretary top, we are going to do the bonnet top, (fully closed) with flame finials and carved rosette’s as well as I am going to do a flat top crown, for a less formal look, so you have the options, the bonnett top will be basically just a smaller version of the Bombe http://antiquesbuiltdaily.com/Website%20Photos/Bedroom%20Furniture/mahbombe1large.jpg … with a few variations, but not much,
Years ago we had Whiteside make us a custom-made bit , actually 2 for making the goose neck molding, we paid about 600.00 for the bit, because we had to pay all the design and set up expense, but it sure made making these a whole lot faster and easier, so we are going to be sending an email out telling you about the bit, it will not be cheap, thinking in the 100 to 150 range, Yea I know, it will depend on the number of ones we have made, remember we have the set up fee no matter, but the more its spread over the cheaper they become, and yes I know its a seldom used bit, for the hobby guy, so no issue, just want to make it available to those who may want it, it also makes for super nice dished , and very elegant picture frames here is a picture of the actual goose neck http://antiquesbuiltdaily.com/Website%20Photos/August25/bedroom/bed7large.jpg… again, not trying to sell ya anything, just trying to make it available, the reason we are doing it now is it will take approx 5 to 6 weeks for the bits to be made, so if you have an interest watch for the email…
Well I guess I best get to work and get these projects done, Hope to get back to the table today.. looks like we will ..