butcher block table

a side trip to the thrift store and suddenly an unexpected purchase.

we didn’t exactly NEED this table but I couldn’t leave it there.
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about 350 pounds of maple. just one leg weighs 6.58 pounds.

we needed to use carraige bolts fix legs because they were cracked.  the main problem was that someone put wheels on the legs and there was just too much weight on that small pivot point and there was too much stress on the legs causing them to crack. we could have used the table without the wheels but it was rather low.

it was tough to find wheels that would work so finally we settled on making a dolly or shelf for the table to set on. that way you can still move the table without getting a hernia and the platform or shelf provide a place to store pots and pans.

the before picture shows the table before a little cleaning and tlc. but look once it is cleaned and oiled.

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it dominates my tiny kitchen but in a good way.

cleaned, sanded and oiled the table demands you stroke it as you walk by. it is a marvel ….maple blocks on end all dovetailed together. it is hard to imagine having the patience to dovetail and fit 13″ blocks of wood. every scrap of wood was used even strips that were only an inch in width.

imagethe craftmanship is unbelievable. I wish I could read the writing on the underside of the table and find out where it is from. I can only imagine that it was in a butcher shop or maybe a restaurant and it was used daily.

 

the table did not need a lot of work before putting it in our kitchen. the hardest part was figuring out how to attach new wheels with out cracking out the legs more. we thought about putting new legs on but it seemed a shame to use pipe legs instead of the original wood legs. building a little dolly for the table to sit on seemed to be the best solution for us. it doesn’t change the table at all and adds storage space in our tiny kitchen.

to prepare the table for use I cleaned the top with vinegar which got off some of the grime and dirt. then after it dried overnight I used an orbital sander to clean it a little more. I didn’t want to sand and level the top just clean and prepare the surface for oiling so I used 120 grit sandpaper. that took a lot of the surface dirt and marring off. I spent less time on the sides of the table and just sanded it enough to open the grain and get off surface dirt.

once we got the table inside I coated it with mineral oil. the wood is fairly dry so I have rubbed oil into the surface 3 times. the sides and legs I only have oiled once. we want to stain the dolly too. and I am thinking some walnut husk dye will do the job and then I will oil the shelf also.

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