Well Grafted Table

This piece is inspired by the Art Nouveau movement. All of the curved members are laminated from 1/8 inch thick Ash strips pressed into molds and held with clamps until the glue has dried. Years ago, when I was still making kitchen cabinets for folks, I made the molds from the leftover plywood. Today I buy baltic birch ply and make molds and jigs from it. The system is designed so that I can use bar clamps to pull everything together. After the laminations are made I use mortise and tenon joinery to connect them. "Well Grafted" is a take-off on "Well Crafted." The dark end of the table top is Claro Walnut, used in walnut orchards as the root stock on which is grafted English Walnut. The Claro resists something called "oak root fungus" that we have in the soil here - the English Walnut is grafted on to produce walnuts that are easy to shell and to process. The light colored end of the table top is the English Walnut wood, and the dark line in between is where the two were grafted.

I make my own veneer for these things. It is sawn on my 30 inch Oliver Bandsaw to 3/16ths thickness, sanded to 1/8th inch, and then laid up on the substrate. The back, or bottom, side is veneered too, or the whole thing would warp. I usually make the backing veneer out of eastern soft maple. See my website for a different version of this table.

Dimensions: The oval top is 4 by 6 feet. The table is 30 inches tall.

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Made in Boonville, CA

By Tom Mcfadden Furniture


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