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Kauri Wood advice

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Kate Harding 103/10/2011 19:15:50
4 forum posts
I am a very inexperienced woodworker who loves wood. Last year I bought an unfinished Kauri wood coffee table top in New Zealand and had it shipped back to the UK. It's 40,000 years old, dug up from a bog. It's approx 1000 long and 400 wide and uneven in shape with bark still on most of the sloped edges.
 
I would like to to finish it myself to bring out the amazing grain in this red wood - and then find a wooden base to fix it too (I would hope to find a tree base with root spurs that I can level and - who knows how yet - fix the two together). I don't want to end up with a varnish / lacquer type shiny finish which is what I can find on the internet. I'm ready to do a lot of sanding!
 
Please can anyone recommend what I need to buy and do to finish this ancient piece of wood? A total layman's guide would be fantastic with Step 1, Step 2 etc.. would be ideal - I wouldn't feel patronised!
 
Thank you very much indeed,
 
Kate
dennis wake03/10/2011 22:39:12
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2044 forum posts
1451 photos
1 articles
firstly welcome to the site
if you are wanting to flat the top i would get a orbital sander and gradually go through the grades of sand paper from 150 through to 400 using all the grades in between . when you sand , sand with the grain. in between each grade i would brush all the dust of the top. on finishing i would have a look through all the postings on the finishing heading on the forum. >>here<< is a start for you. good luck with the table and keep us all informed of your progress.
dennis
Big Al04/10/2011 07:00:09
1604 forum posts
73 photos
I would use rustins danish oil, it will give you the colour from the wood, and after 3 coats it would leave you with a matt satin finish.
 
Al
BillW04/10/2011 07:56:15
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711 forum posts
21 photos
Hello and welcome Kate,
I had a read up on Kauri last night, very interesting.
I would love to see some photo's of it.
To add to what Dennis said, try and imagine you wood at the moment is like a mountain range, it has to end up like a sandy beach.
 
Bill.
Kate Harding 119/10/2011 18:56:49
4 forum posts
Hello Dennis, Big Al and Bill W,
 
Sorry for the delay. I wanted to get started and get some photos before I got back to you. Thank you so much for your help. I've started sanding it down now and have bought some Danish Oil, ready for when I get through the finer grit. My problem is that I have a Mac (rather than a PC) and it doesn't seem to be compatible with this forum. I'll keep trying...
 
In the meantime I can post a link to a photo of the kind of base I'd like to find. Obviously it won't be Kauri, but any advice on good alternative wood types wold be great. And if any of you know of good sources then that wolud be great too:
http://www.treetables.com/tree_stump_tables_stone_tops.php
 
Now I will attempt to put my photos somewhere on the net so that I can post a link to it, as I don't think I will be able to post directly.
 
Thank you again for your help.
 
Kate
 
 
Ron Davis19/10/2011 19:10:19
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1619 forum posts
201 photos
I do believe that somewhere in the undergrowth there lurks a moderator, try a email to Darren, the editor and he will put you in touch. Darren has been helpful to me in the past when I had a query. I think you should be able to post with a Mac.
 
Have you resized your pics? Try PIXresizer if not
 
Ron
BillW19/10/2011 19:22:50
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711 forum posts
21 photos
I really don't see why you should not be able to post piccy's with a Mac, as Ron says the first thing to address is size, 800x600 pixels is a good starting point, then check the name of the photo's, no illegal (in computer terminology) characters or format.
 
The only thing I can suggest regarding the tree stump base is get in touch with local forest/woods and/or tree surgeons.
 
Bill.
Big Al19/10/2011 19:43:32
1604 forum posts
73 photos
I have a mac and the only time that I have a problem is when someone pastes a really long link.
 
With regards to resizing pictures, on a mac its easy, if your photo's are in iphoto, then just export them and when the export photo box appears then change the size and quality to reduce the size of your photo's.
 
Al
Kate Harding 119/10/2011 19:44:16
4 forum posts
Right,
 
If you click on this link you can see my slab of 40,000 year old wood. You don't need to be a member of Facebook - it's a public link / album.
 
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150412383860155.401382.621425154&type=1&l=a3380bb993
 
I plan to leave the rustic edges, where possible and just sand off any loose parts or bits with resin.
 
It's also got a bit of damage (which happened in transit) because it a surprisingly soft wood (well a surprise to me).
 
I'll post more once I start oiling, although I have to admit I'm a bit nervous.
 
Kate
Kate Harding 119/10/2011 19:47:36
4 forum posts
Th problem with the photos comes when I click on the 'Insert Image' icon. It says there's no albums there to choose from, so I can go no further.
 
Derek Lane19/10/2011 19:57:15
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Moderator
3219 forum posts
1004 photos
Kate have you uploaded your photo's to a album first if not look HERE. Hope this helps
BillW19/10/2011 19:57:43
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711 forum posts
21 photos
You must create an album on this site first Kate, I don't think you can post external images.
 
There are some help articles on the Home page.
 
Bill.
dennis wake19/10/2011 22:24:15
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2044 forum posts
1451 photos
1 articles
hi Kate
hope you don't mined i have added a better link to the facebook page >>here<< for you it meens that every one that wants to look at it can.what i wood do with the damaged area is cut it of and sand down the edge as it is sawn in that area any way. if you have any realy soft areas try putting superglue on the area and let it dry and then sand it you will soon see the difrence.
dennis
dennis wake19/10/2011 22:28:31
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2044 forum posts
1451 photos
1 articles
hi Derek
if you click on the link you will find that it no longer exists. don't know what has happened as this was a very informative links.
dennis
Joe O 319/10/2011 23:04:31
203 forum posts
Denis and Kate,
 
I presume that when Marc changed his profile Sparky to A1 the guides were removed too.
A pity as they were informative. I hope someone in authority replaces or re-writes them.
Welcome Kate.
Joe.

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