The project I have just completed has a fun story behind it. As I shared in the latest newsletter, my friends and neighbors, Nicole and Sean, discovered "Defiance Boards" had been used as the floorboards in their old bathroom. Back in the 1700's, certain wooden boards were hidden in places like floors because they had been illegally cut down by Vermonters -they did not want the British using them for the masts of their ships. When Nicole and Sean discovered they were in posession of something so special, they asked me to transform the boards in to a new dining table for them. The ironic fact that I am British but have just become a US citizen was not lost on any of us!
It was necessary to prepare the boards while maintaining their original character. First, I had to mark lines on the boards to see how much yield there was - could I make a 96" x 42" table? Only 78" of straight, clean board existed, so we discussed what to do and decided to put bread-boards on each table end. I then stripped all of the old finish.
I had to "square" the 3 main pieces which was not an easy process, as there were old nails hidden in the boards and I didn't want to ruin the blades of my saw! Next, I sanded the surface being careful to maintain the character of each board. Before glueing and clamping the 3 main boards, I tenoned the edges to help align the irregular surfaces.
More in the next blog...