Woodworking - Kibuye Style

 By Jason

A number of people on our team enjoy woodworking among their hobbies.  Wood here comes very roughly cut, and usually half the duration of any project is just getting things flat and straight.  The following project was no exception.

When the Cropseys built their house 10 years ago, a massive eucalyptus tree was growing in the middle of the plot where the house was going.  I'm sure John tried to convince Jess to keep the tree and build a tree house in the middle of their new home, but alas, it came down.  John did save the root and made a table from it, but it was so heavy that it was nearly immovable.

After the Cropseys moved, I asked John if I could try making something with the wood, and he agreed.  So we towed it up to the workshop, closer to the tools:

I wanted to slice it like bread and make a coffee table.  I thought the process would provide some exercise as well.  We located a massive saw from a previous attempt at cutting wood, and we tried our hand at slicing the stump.

Many hours and sore muscles later, it was clear that this was going to need more expertise (Eucalyptus is HARD), so we contacted the local woodcutters, and they came and worked for 3 days and produced three slices of  the stump.  

I offered them our saw as payment, since theirs was nearly gone from years of use (as you can see in the picture), and they were overjoyed at the prospect (it was worth more than they asked for in payment), and I was pretty sure we were never going to be buff enough to make use of it.  Win-win.

After wrestling the piece of stump into the shop, I started the long process of flattening it and making it smooth.  

I inlayed some "bowties" to keep the cracks from extending and filled in some of the deeper crevases with epoxy, before finishing it with a number of coats of varnish, and then made a base out of eucalyptus.  It currently sits happily in our living room, adding lots of character, and now I am looking forward to seeing what the other 2 slices could become.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Oh, this amazing Jason, I want one! :-)