Monthly Archives: March 2015

Wood Lover Wednesday – Cocobolo

For this Wood Lover Wednesday, I traveled to my local lumber supplier to sneak a peek of some stunningly beautiful Cocobolo. Thanks to the awesome folks at AdvantageLumber.com, this humble wood lover was able to snap a pic of this gorgeous Cocobolo slab!!

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Cocobolo is a very dense, tropical hardwood (Dalbergia retusa) & is extremely oily with a floral odor. It’s heartwood is an orange/reddish brown color with a figuring of irregular black stripes. Only the heartwood of this beautiful tree is used, tho as you can see in the above pic, the sapwood is a creamy yellow with a clear delineation in between. Cocobolo is known to cause allergic reactions because of it’s high oil content so a mask is advised while working + if gluing up, I recommend wiping surfaces to be glued with acetone to attain proper adhesion. This wood stands up to water very well, making it ideal for knife handles and gun grips. It can be polished to a lustrous, glossy finish & has a Janka hardness of 2260. Due to Cocobolo’s amazing resonant properties, it is a fine choice for acoustic guitars. Not much of this rare wood exists out of national parks & reserves, so it’s uniqueness is worth the hefty price tag.

Yolo! Splurge on some Cocobolo & share your wonders here! ;D

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Wood Lover Wednesday – Walnut

Welcome to my first ever Wood Lover Wenesday! Each Wednesday I’ll be featuring some wood species info & pics in order to learn my woods & swap photos with fellow wood lovers! Feel free to share a link to your favorite wood of the week pic!

Learnin’ –> Walnut has a dense (janka – 1010), tight-grained timber which makes it perfect for furniture, turned carvings, and lutherie + it’s burls are prized for making incredibly beautiful veneers. Walnut can range in color from creamy white in the sapwood to dark chocolate in the heartwood. Walnut is purplish-brown when air-dryed compared to a dull brown when kiln-dried, both of which are stunning in this wood-lover’s eyes!

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Here’s a shot of the walnut top of the Fine Furniture table seen here that I recently built. I LOVE how you can easily see how the tree was sliced and even where branches were growing out from the trunk!!

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My First Fine Furniture Table

I’ve always enjoyed designing furniture… I LOVE the whole design process, from gathering inspiration to bringing a concept to fruition! Before this week though, I had only been able to doodle my designs since I didn’t have the know-how to build my wooden creations. Thanks to my time at Franklin Street School of Woodworking in Tampa and the expert tutelage of Kate Swann, the world of Fine Furniture Building has been opened up to me. I designed, selected lumber, jointed, planed, ripped, chopped, and formed said lumber into the table that would start my Fine Furniture building career! My time at Franklin Street went by in a flash since I was enjoying myself soooooooo much! Do I love Furniture Refinishing? Of course, I do! But, it seems like a natural progression for me to finally build all the designs that have only lived on paper up until now. So, without further ado, here is the first table that I not only designed, but was able to BUILD out of walnut & quartersawn sycamore!!!! Hope you like it! :D

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For this table concept, that will start a series of work for me, I tried to show emotion (in this case, impatience) and movement with leg placement. Keep an eye on my Etsy shop for future furniture designs up for sale! What emotion would YOU like me to convey in furniture form?!

Straight, Square, Flat, and True

As a dive into the amazing world of Fine Woodworking under the expert tutelage of Kate Swann & Franklin Street Fine Woodwork, I find myself so eager to fulfill my dreams of becoming a Furniture Designer/Fine Furniture Maker, that I’m pushing myself to be perfect right out the gate… I have to be continually reminded that it’s not a race, it’s not a contest, then I allow myself to slow down and enjoy the process… at that moment that I can see that the turning of a raw piece of lumber into a square slab of wooden perfection is incredibly rewarding. I have always been a wood lover & now through this amazing process of taking lumber through the jointer, planer, chop saw, and table saw, it seems that wood now loves me back! The grain patterns that emerge through this process conceptually mesh with the furniture design in my head, planets align, and my soul is lit on fire… time stands still and speeds up at the same time as I realize that I could (someday, with a ton of practice), actually be good at this thing that I’ve wanted to do all my life! Now if I could just turn this passion into a career, that would be bliss! :)))

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“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” – Confucius