Camphor Laurel Timber Slab Hall Table

This nice camphor laurel slab was purchased at the Sydney Timber and Working with Wood Show.

Unfortunately it was a bit too long and wide for our hall. After making a large number of proposed cut lines, P and I were in agreement!

Which line was it?

Thought a long time about the style of legs to use. Decided on a trestle table, and it was P’s idea to use the part cut away from the back of the table as the stretcher. Making the legs, these are a prototype using radiata pine. I am planning to use fancier timber after verifying the proportions (but know there’s a chance I’ll never get round to it).

Checking table size in the hall. Stretcher not in place yet.

Dry fit.

Taping up table top so when I fill voids from the other size with epoxy, it does not leak through.

Gluing up table legs and filling holes with epoxy. The epoxy used was West Systems with 206 slow hardener and ebony black aniline dye from Lee Valley. The photo shows the underside of the board which had the most voids.

Flattening underside of table top. Also bevelled the edges a little.

There are a lot of choices for finishing (including boiled linseed oil, tung oil, polyurethane varnish, blends such as Danish oil and epoxy). Since I didn’t want one that would make the wood look yellow and it didn’t need to be particularly durable, decided on polyurethane. Struggled with whether to use water-based polyurethane varnish or oil-based but ended up choosing the latter. This was mainly because it is hard to get a good finish with water-based unless you spray. Anyway, I’m happy with the choice, it really brought up the contrast in the wood (photo shows underside again).

Table in hall.