If you missed it, we built a Wood & Pipe Dining Table, check it out here.
****UPDATE**** Check out our revised version of the Pipe & Wood Table
Today we’re gonna finish it!
Although I love the thickness and width of the construction grade spruce 2×12’s that we used, I don’t love the colour. They are yellowy light wood. Its just not my thing. We wanted something a bit darker, but that would not overpower our open concept dining room/kitchen. Our walls are a light grey, floors are a natural ash, and our cabinets are white. After considering several stain options, we opted to go with Varathane Stain in Chocolate. We also opted to drop $15 on Wood Conditioner. A lot of people think wood conditioner is an overpriced fad. However, I have stained softwood before and had utterly terrible blotchy results, and a stain that was waaaay to dark. So rather than ruin my whole tabletop, I opted to spend the $15 and give it a shot. So we applied the wood conditioner and let it dry for 30 minutes. Then I came back and applied a generous coat of stain to the table (one board at a time) with a foam brush. I let it soak in for about 5 minutes then wiped it back with a clean rag. OMG I cant believe how amazing just one coat looked!
I let it dry for about an hour, then came back and gave it a second coat of stain.
The stain really brought out the textures and grain of the wood, and made it look a lot more rustic and well… less cheap. Ha ha! I was very happy with the colour, and I knew that when we put our final finish on it would get a bit darker.
As we choose a low grade lumber, there are a lot of knots, and a few cracks. I like the looks of the knots, but there were a couple big knots that had considerable holes in them (which will be crumb catchers and a bucket of pain in the butt later). We decided to epoxy the large cracks and knot holes. I picked up a $8 tube of 2 part epoxy that dries transparent (this is very important). After the stain had dried for 24 hours, we taped off around the knots and mixed up some 2 part epoxy.
We filled the knots/cracks with epoxy using a small wooden stir stick as an applicator.
After the epoxy dried we removed the tape, and carefully scraped any over spilled epoxy with a sharp razor blade. Here is a close up of one of the filled knots.
In hindsight, I probably would have delicately stained the knots and cracks before staining the whole table, then epoxied the knots, then sanded them, and stained the rest of the table. I overfilled a few of the cracks, and they could have used a sand. I also would have removed the tape before the epoxy dried entirely. Trial by fire!
After the stain and epoxy had dried for 24 hours, I started oiling the table. We decided to try tung oil as a finish for the table. We liked the idea of using the table like a big cutting board or butcher block counter top. Meaning if we wanted to have a wine and cheese night, we could literally put the cheese on the table. We like the idea of the table getting bashed, beaten up and abused. The idea of a shiny varathane finish just didn’t work for us. So we did a bit of research and settled on tung oil, which is a natural oil that actually dries. Problem with it, is it requires a LOT of applications, a long dry time, and a lot of muscle power for rubbing that thick oil into the table.
So we got started on our oiling, and oiled some more, and some more, and some more. A weeks worth of oiling and this is what we’ve got now.
***UPDATE*** We continued oiling once a week, and started using a 600 wet/dry sandpaper to lightly rub in the oil. This made the table super smooth, and did not damage the finish/stain. We only started using the sandpaper after 6 or 7 coats of oil were already on the table.
What do you think? We also sneaked in another little project to go with the table, will be back with it later this week!
**UPDATE** Check out the matching bench we made.
****SUPER UPDATE**** Check out our revised version of the Pipe & Wood Table, painted chairs and bench.
1 – 3/4″x10′ black pipe – Home Depot (cut & threaded to size, for a complete cut list check out this post)
1 – 3/4″x6′ black pipe – Home Depot
4 – 3/4″x6″ nipple – Home Depot
8 – 3/4″ Floor Flange – Home Depot
6 – 3/4″ Tee – Home Depot
1pkg 3″ felt furniture pads – Home Depot
2 – 2x12x12 spruce – Rona
Varathane stain in Chocolate – Home Depot
Varathane wood conditioner – Home Depot
Pure Tung Oil – Lee Valley
Difficulty Level (on a scale of 1-5):
Total Cost: $200 ($35 in Lumber, $120 in pipe/fittings, $45 in finishing materials)