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How to Make a Good Table

By 5 March 2010 8

Many months ago I wrote about buying a lovely slab of timber from Paul the Simply Slabs man on the side of the road, with the intention of doing it up and making myself a wonderful dining table and coffee table. After many months of laziness and procrastination I actually started work.

So after attacking the slab of red river gum with various grades or sandpaper over and over again I finally got it to the stage that it was nice and smooth. The next challenge was filling in the gaps which was mostly done with a clear resin, some of the larger knots on the underside were filled in with wood filler. And then it was back to more sanding. First coat of gloss, then more sanding, then 3 more coats, top and bottom. Thats the coffee table done, and repeat but 4 times as long for the dining table.

I removed the top of my old dining and coffee tables and just put the new slabs onto the existing legs, nice and simple. The bark edges give the table a lot of character and the colour is very impressive.

The other trick to be aware of when you are working on it, is that the wood will curl upwards on the edges towards the sun, so you need to flip it over every once in a while to let it flatten itself out again, that and the slabs are very heavy.

The outcome is a good looking dining and coffee table.

Next challenge is getting some timber for a pergola over the deck.

For those interested Paul (0410 293 377) is down the bottom of Bindubi Street this Canberra Day long weekend and again in another fortnight.

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8 Responses to How to Make a Good Table
#1
rottweiler11:03 am, 06 Mar 10

Che awesome tables I myself have brought I few pieces from Paul one i believe was pictured in your last piece on him it’s still a working project. Thanks for the pic’s.

#2
H1NG01:33 pm, 06 Mar 10

Looks awesome. Nice work.

#3
I-filed1:42 pm, 06 Mar 10

The big one looks as though two corners slope downward – or is it a trick of the light?

#4
paservank8:14 pm, 06 Mar 10

I’m just wondering where these slabs come from?

Something that big would have to be from old growth forests, right?

#5
Dazzlar12:31 am, 07 Mar 10

Good job! Could I be so bold as to ask how much it all cost?

#6
westyonline10:06 am, 07 Mar 10

most of the trees are river red gums,which dont grow in forests!.they are solitary trees,that grow along rivers.To get timber that well seasoned,it has to be dead,and has to dry all the moisture out of the timber before you can work it..these trees could well have been dead for 50 years or more.

#7
housebound11:51 am, 07 Mar 10

So much for the Red Gum Forests in the Barmah State Park. I guess someone should change the name there. http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/1park_display.cfm?park=43

#8
I-filed1:03 pm, 07 Mar 10

housebound said :

So much for the Red Gum Forests in the Barmah State Park. I guess someone should change the name there. http://www.parkweb.vic.gov.au/1park_display.cfm?park=43

The Simply Slabs man’s website refers to “naturally felled” timber – but I notice they are based at Bodalla. Echuca would be a looooong way to take their “eco friendly portable mill” so some more provenance detail from Paul on this timber would probably be a good thing!

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