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  1. #1
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    Attempting my first cutting board

    Hey there everybody

    I decided that I want to build myself an end grain cutting board. I saw a very cool youtube vid by a guy called the wood whisperer, and I plan to copy his design, but just enlarge it a bit in length, width and height. Here's the linky to the how to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5B8oAJs3sik

    My question involves wood choice. His design calls for a mix of rock maple and purpleheart. I really like the visual effect of the contrasting wood colors and therefore want to go with a two-tone board. However from the FAQ over at the Boardsmith, purpleheart is on a list of woods that are said to be too hard and therefore tougher on knives. So I've decided to replace the purpleheart with something softer.

    I was thinking that Rock maple would look just as cool next to black walnut, but the same FAQ says it's important to keep the hardness of the woods similar because of the way woods of different hardness react to wear and humidity differently.

    Are maple and walnut similar enough? Am I better off going walnut/cherry? Maple/mahogany? Maybe I can find two pieces of maple that are different enough in color get the same effect though more subtle....

    What wood would you use if you were going to put together a 'multi wood' board?

    Thanks for any advice/opinions

    Oh and BTW I plan to ignore the videos recommendation of salad bowl finish and just go with the oil and wax method.

  2. #2
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    you can probably use the purpleheart as a border =D

  3. #3
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Mine is maple and cherry, and that works perfectly fine. Don't like purple heart at all.

    Stefan

  4. #4
    Senior Member Chifunda's Avatar
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    For what it's worth, I have a rock maple/purpleheart cutting board I made using Marc Spagnuolo's plan. I used it for about a year before buying a BoardSmith and never noticed the purpleheart being particularly tough on my knives.

    If you don't have access to a drum sander, keep the surface of your board as flat and level as possible when you do your glue-up. Planing all that end grain by hand is not for the faint of heart.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by kartman35 View Post
    Are maple and walnut similar enough? Am I better off going walnut/cherry? Maple/mahogany? Maybe I can find two pieces of maple that are different enough in color get the same effect though more subtle....
    Check out hardness rating of wood here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janka_hardness_test

  6. #6
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    Made that board with maple and walnut soon after he released that video. It must be over 5 years old now and gets daily hard use. Still going strong. Might last forever.

    Made a couple as gifts with maple and purple heart a few years later. Had problems with glue joints. Don't know if the problem was the wood, user maintenance routine, or glue-up technique. Maybe all of the above. I've done a few things with maple and walnut. They seem to play well together.

    Maple/walnut may be the low-risk approach to your project.

    Let us know how it goes.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Chifunda's Avatar
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    Here's mine with purpleheart. Put it together with Titebond III and no problems with glue joints so far.



  8. #8

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    Looks great! Board isn't too shabby either! :P

    Chris

  9. #9
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    Thanks to all who offered an opinion.

    I picked up my lumber today and decided to go with maple and walnut.

    I'll post pics when it's done, thanks again

  10. #10
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    subscribed!!

    i have the wood..mahogany. i dont have the tools. i really want to make a big board for bread making.

    joiner? a big electric plane? are you gonna use these?

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