Moderators: Random Orbital Bob, nev, Noel, Charley, CHJ

 Reply
By LancsRick
#1086980
I'm getting new sofas in a couple of months (yippee!), and thought that this might be a good time to also replace the battered old Ikea coffee table that sits in my lounge with something a bit nicer, as well as giving myself my first ever proper furniture project which should push and grow my skills a bit.

To set the scene for the room - it's got a very dark brown/almost black laminate floor, black bookshelves, white walls, and will have mid-grey sofas. Colour comes from the wall decorations and a rug or two that I'll be putting in there. No fire, TV on a black glass stand is the main thing in the room. As you can imagine, it's a fairly minimalist modern room, but I'd like to give it a visual centrepiece by putting a nice table in there. That said, I'd like something fairly contemporary in its styling.

My idea at the moment comes from crashing together a couple of designs I've seen elsewhere:
http://www.wharfside.co.uk/living-room- ... -table-lux
and also
coffee-table-t92158.html?hilit=table

I like the small drawer on the first one, and the fact that the table has a solid base. I don't like the fact they haven't mitred the corners, and for me it's too uniform. That's where the second link comes in - I like the chunky feel of that one, and the addition of a contrasting wood makes the whole thing feel much more eyecatching.

I'm thinking therefore of combining the themes of the two, into a coffee table approx 160cm long, 60cm wide. Dominant wood to be european oak, with a feature/stripe/something from black walnut.

What do you guys think?

Construction-wise, since it would probably be uniform and I'd combine the woods through edge laminating, I'd just look to to 4 45degree mitres with dowels as I can't see why I'd need any consideration for expansion in this design.

C&C welcome, I'm way out of my comfort zone on this!

Cheers
User avatar
By custard
#1090880
Very interesting designs, like you I think the first one is only let down by the butt jointed corners, mitres with the grain flowing around would be far superior. The slim drawer is excellent, I like the little "pencil keep" strip that they incorporated, that's a great little detail.

I'd be a bit cautious about putting Oak together with Black Walnut, especially if the table will be located in a south facing room. I'll see if I can dig out some photos of fade tests that I ran, the fact is what walnut looks like in the workshop bears no comparison to what it will look like after just a few months and I'm not sure there'll be enough contrast with Oak to make it worthwhile.
User avatar
By custard
#1090887
I can't find the photos I really wanted and I need to get back to work, but this will give you some idea.

Fade-Test-2-Months.jpg


From the top left hand corner and working clockwise this is English Oak, English Rippled Sycamore, American Black Walnut, and American Cherry.

The right hand side of each wood sample has a UV filter finish (I was testing different UV resistant finishes).

The bottom half was shielded from the light, the top half is in a south facing window.

This is after just two months, I've got photos from 6 months, 12 months and some after 24 months, the differences just keep growing.

What you can see straight away is that ABW gets lighter in room daylight, where as Oak gets darker, so the contrast between them ends up pretty minimal. I could go on about how steamed Walnut (which is 95%+ of all the ABW available in this country), fares worse in fade tests than unsteamed and far worse than English Walnut, but I'm sure you get the picture!

Good luck!
By LancsRick
#1091087
Thanks for the reply, that's a fantastic bit of info because I wouldn't even have thought of considering that.

I might just use some ebonising lacquer on a separate oak strip to create the detail, that might be the better approach. Cheers!
By Chris152
#1182013
custard wrote:I can't find the photos I really wanted and I need to get back to work, but this will give you some idea.

Fade-Test-2-Months.jpg


From the top left hand corner and working clockwise this is English Oak, English Rippled Sycamore, American Black Walnut, and American Cherry.

The right hand side of each wood sample has a UV filter finish (I was testing different UV resistant finishes).

The bottom half was shielded from the light, the top half is in a south facing window.

This is after just two months, I've got photos from 6 months, 12 months and some after 24 months, the differences just keep growing.

What you can see straight away is that ABW gets lighter in room daylight, where as Oak gets darker, so the contrast between them ends up pretty minimal. I could go on about how steamed Walnut (which is 95%+ of all the ABW available in this country), fares worse in fade tests than unsteamed and far worse than English Walnut, but I'm sure you get the picture!

Good luck!

I'm amazed at how much those woods shifted tone in such a short time. Did you find one UV resistant finish that was most effective?
User avatar
By custard
#1182066
Chris152 wrote:Did you find one UV resistant finish that was most effective?


Here's the paradox, most UV inhibitors break down in...wait for it...sunlight! The bottom line is that any good spar varnish will give superb UV resistance for a few years, then it quickly collapses. That's why revarnishing a wooden boat is the task of Sisyphus.
By Chris152
#1182100
I guess that's a whole new can of worms to be thought about if I'm painting details onto the wood, and retaining the tone of the wood's important - removing uv resistant varnish to re-coat would take the detail away, too. 'To be used only in North-facing rooms...'