Slab desk/table Update

Picture heavy update this evening everyone! I don't have the energy for huge volumes of description and I have a cat sitting on my lap who's significantly inhibiting my ability to type. I've been making slow but steady progress on the slab desk (I'm calling it a desk, because that's how I intend to use it, but it's more table in stature and design).

The finish came today.  I'm using General Finishes Semi-gloss Arm 'r' Seal which I'm very excited about.  It's supposed to have the grain-popping capability of oil, with the protection of a polyurethane.  From what I've seen so far, that's true!

Yesterday (Sunday) I did the surface prep on the actual slab and patched a corner where I accidentally took a chunk of wood out while de-barking (i.e. removing the bark, not disembarking).  The surface prep is less than thrilling, so only a couple of pictures there:

Scraping.  You can actually see the interface in the middle between scraped vs. un-scraped.

And a few photos of the corner-patching process:

Raw corner with the patch area marked out.

Clean and ready for gluing.

After clamping for 24 hours.

Shaped into place.

Trio of koa keys/patches.

I actually think that the patch kinda perfectly rounds out the keys.  I dunno.  It somehow feels more complete with it there.  I definitely didn't plan it that way!

Now for the best part: applying the first coats of finish.  I only did the bottom of the slab tonight, so I don't know how the keys are going to look yet! I'm most excited about that.  But the wood looks amazing.  I'm just always blown away by how beautiful wood can is.

Ready for a first coat.

Halfway through...

First coat finished.

A little glossier than it'll end up being once fully cured, but daaamn does that walnut look good.

And finally (actually prior to putting on the first coat of finish) I put a seal on it, something I've never really done before.  It felt a little weird, but I think I like it ultimately.  Since the desk is somewhat George Nakashima inspired, I went up-down first with my initials instead of left-right.  I'm pretty pleased with how it came out if nothing else. :-) After carving it in, I inked it with some ink and a brush my mom recently sent me.  Finishing over the top of it should make it pretty permanent.

Carved seal? Signature? Not sure what to call it.

Inking it. (The glove is to keep my oily hands off of the prepped wood surface).

Ready to go.

Alright everyone.  That's all for tonight.  Tomorrow AM I'll start on the top and get to see what the keeeeeys looks like.  I'll be distraught if they don't look good.  Just a heads up. ;-)

<3,

John