Maple Trestle Table, Session 29 – Removing Epoxy, Then Adding More

On the morning of Sunday, April 15th, Morton and I exchanged ideas about trestle tables, spurred on by a recent sketch of a table on which he was working.  That got me yearning to build a trestle table.

I documented my progress live on Twitter which was useful because each update had a time stamp so followers could see the rate at which I progressed.  Here is a list of the previous Sessions:

Session 1 – Flat Boards are Boring;
Session 2 – Playing with Slabs;
Session 3 – From Two Slabs to One Table Top;
Session 4 – Clamping Odd Shapes and Sketching on Wood;
Session 5 – Routing Pockets for Battens;
Session 6 – Making Battens and Installing Countertop Connectors;
Session 7 – Installing Battens and Flattening the Underside;
Session 8 – Make Your Tools Work for You and Flattening the Top;
Session 9 – Mortises the Slow Way (or Why I’m Buying a Domino XL);
Session 10 – Curvy Legs are Always Good;
Session 11 – Straight Lines on Wonky Surfaces;
Session 12 – Fitting the Mother of all Mortise & Tenon Joints;
Session 13 – Making Things Better, Worse, then Better;
Session 14 – Battens and Complicated Tenons, Again;
Session 15 – The Trestle Comes Together Session;
Session 16 – Angled Mortises and Tenons;
Session 17 – Two Feet for Two Legs;
Session 18 – Attachment Strips and Power Carving;
Session 19 – Refining the Sculpted Base;
Session 20 – A Little Sanding, then Lots More Sanding;
Session 21 – Preparing for a Big Glue-Up;
Session 22 – Fitting and Joining the Table Top;
Session 23 – The Bottom of the Top;
Session 24 – Profiling the Table’s Edge;
Session 25 – Completing the Bottom Edge;
Session 26 – Installing the Base;
Session 27 – Flattening the Top and Completing the Edge; and
Session 28 – Filling the Voids.

(If you are not familiar with the format used on Twitter, every update, or “tweet” below starts with a username, being the author of that tweet.  Sometimes, you see two or more usernames in a tweet.  The second (and third, etc) usernames are preceded by a @ symbol and are people to whom the author is talking.  The other symbol you see is #, which serves as a category.  I try to remember to categorize all my tweets pertaining to this project under #flairww.)

FlairWoodworks After a couple hours scraping epoxy (spread out in 10-minute sessions) the epoxy is levelled. #flairww -11:04 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks The dark, shiny areas indicate low spots so I’ll mix up a bit more epoxy to fill them. #flairww -11:05 AM Jun 24th, 2012

roncbailey FlairWoodworks did you tint the epoxy? -11:15 AM Jun 24th, 201

FlairWoodworks No. The epoxy is clear. #flairww RT @roncbailey: @FlairWoodworks did you tint the epoxy? -11:15 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks These air bubbles did not escape before the epoxy cured so I’m using a chisel to break them open. #flairww -11:17 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks There were lots of pin holes to fill. Now I’ll go do something else for the day while the epoxy sets. #flairww -11:47 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Even though I only needed a little epoxy, I dispensed a full pump of epoxy resin and hardener. #flairww -11:49 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks The West System pumps accurately dispense the right amount of each part to ensure the ratio is right and the epoxy cures properly. #flairww -11:50 AM Jun 24th, 2012

luggermatt @FlairWoodworks Always do a full pump of each otherwise it won’t go off! I use West Epoxy a lot! #flairww -11:51 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @luggermatt Do you use the Slow Cure stuff? How big of a batch are you comfortable mixing at a time? #flairww -11:52 AM Jun 24th, 2012

luggermatt @FlairWoodworks I use either depending on what’s being glued. The most I mix at a time is 10-15 pumps of each. Then work FAST!!! sooner do two mixes than have it start to cure in the pot! Bonding the cabin sides was stressfull! 3 loose tennons 16 ft long. all had to be glued at the same time as they have threaded rods through them too! -11:56 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @luggermatt I hope you had help! -11:56 AM Jun 24th, 2012

luggermatt @FlairWoodworks One mate! Anymore people and you’d end up falling over each other! The second side was a MUCH smoother process. Both OK tho! -11:57 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @luggermatt Glad to hear it! -11:58 AM Jun 24th, 2012

luggermatt @FlairWoodworks A beer was well earned that afternoon! -11:59 AM Jun 24th, 2012

FlairWoodworks No kidding! RT @luggermatt: @FlairWoodworks A beer was well earned that afternoon!-12:02 PM Jun 24th, 2012

After the epoxy dried, I flipped the top to fill the voids on the bottom surface.

FlairWoodworks I’ve turned the top over to work on the bottom. The biggest voids were filled from the top. #flairww -6:15 PM Jun 25th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’ve applied epoxy to the underside of the table. Now I must wait. #flairww -7:07 PM Jun 25th, 2012

Again, I let the epoxy harden before scraping it back and applying more where necessary.  It is much easier to scrape when not fully cured.

FlairWoodworks I’m back in the shop scraping epoxy again. It isn’t fully hardened, so it’s easier to scrape. #flairww -7:27 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Some of the voids require more filling so I’ll vacuum the surface and prepare some more epoxy. #flairww -7:49 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m going to use 5-minute epoxy for the smaller voids and voids along the edges. #flairww -8:07 PM Jun 26th, 2012

BCcraftmaster @FlairWoodworks how much epoxy have you used? -8:12 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m not sure. I’ll weigh the can when I’m done. #flairww RT @BCcraftmaster @FlairWoodworks how much epoxy have you used? -8:16 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks 5-minute epoxy sure sets fast when you’re used to working with Slow-Cure epoxy! #flairww -8:16 PM Jun 26th, 2012

DozersWorkshop @FlairWoodworks wow! 5 minutes as opposed to your 500 minute? #flairww -8:30 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks The thicker 5-minute epoxy doesn’t run very much and was perfect for the edges. #flairww -8:35 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks That’s it for today! #flairww -8:36 PM Jun 26th, 2012

DozersWorkshop @FlairWoodworks was this a full number session or just a .5? #flairww -8:41 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks @DozersWorkshop This was just a short session – scrape epoxy, apply more, then wait. #flairww -8:41 PM Jun 26th, 2012

DozersWorkshop @FlairWoodworks so we’ll just go with a .3 then #flairww -8:47 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Can we make it 0.33333 repeat? #flairww -8:47 PM Jun 26th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’m scraping epoxy again. #flairww -9:27 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Epoxy can be applied to bartops for that thick, tough, glossy finish. That’s not how I’m using epoxy though. #flairww -9:41 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I am scraping all the epoxy from the surface so it remains only in the voids. #flairww -9:41 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks Epoxy shavings are white. I scrape until i start removing wood, indicating that the epoxy is flush. #flairww -9:46 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks A sharp scraper is very effective at removing epoxy. A dull scraper is not. I remember to stop and sharpen when required. #flairww -9:48 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I may create a low spot along the edge if I use the scraper in the conventional manner so I am using it laying flat. #flairww -10:13 PM Jun 28th, 2012

FlairWoodworks I’ve scraped and sanded the underside of the table. I’ve also scraped the edges but they still need sanding. #flairww -12:32 AM Jun 29th, 2012

Once all the voids are filled, I need to scrape back the epoxy.  Then, a final sanding and inspection is all that remains before finishing!  Care and patience at this stage will make the finishing stage easy.  Read Session 30.

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