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I wanted to make a dining table that would last a lifetime. I had enjoyed having bamboo furniture at our office and I had a lot of 1'x8' lengths to work with. I used a waterjet by OMAX for all of the cutting to experiment with a new kind of CAD/CAM joinery.

Step 1: Draw the Table in CAD

I used Autodesk INVENTOR for the CAD for this project. Any cad would be fine as it is fairly simple 2D plates. I suspect you could even make this with illustrator or coreldraw as all the parts are just 2.5D (2D + thickness)

Step 3: Layout the Parts on Sheets...

I originally thought i could get all the pieces on two sheets of plywood, but that's obviously not true.
It takes about 2.2 sheets. see attached images....

ALso, below find the water jet cutting stats:

Estimated time to make this part: 2.5134 hours
Estimated cost to make this part: $62.84
Estimated abrasive needed: 121.67 Lbs.

Estimated time to make this part: 2.9491 hours
Estimated cost to make this part: $73.73
Estimated abrasive needed: 143.97 Lbs.

Estimated time to make this part: 24.688 min.
Estimated cost to make this part: $10.29
Estimated abrasive needed: 20.43 Lbs.

Around $150....

HERE IN DETAIL:

sheet 1:

Material: bamboo

Machineability: 500

Thickness: 0.7500 inches

Tool offset: 0.0150 inches

Taper offset: 0.0000 deg (0.0000 inches)

Cut stand off: 0.0600 inches

Rotation: 0 deg

Estimated time to make this part: 2.5134 hours

Estimated cost to make this part: $62.84

Estimated abrasive needed: 121.67 Lbs.

Piercing: High pressure | Intelli-PIERCE(R)

Pierces: 65 (0 are wiggle pierces)

Cutting: High pressure

Width of path: 95.9883 (inches)

Height of path: 48.1242

Length of tool path: 2597.8700

Length of cutting: 1940.2480

(Values reported after tool offset applied.)

Pressure and nozzle setup:

High pressure setting: 45000.00 PSI

Low pressure setting: 20000.00 PSI

Mixing tube diameter: 0.0300 inches

Jewel diameter: 0.0140 inches

Abrasive flow rate: 0.8500 Lb/min

Abrasive size: 80.00 Mesh (US Std.)

Abrasive index: 1.00



Feed rate breakdown: (inches/min.)



Ideal linear quality of 1 speed: 34.99

Ideal linear quality of 2 speed: 30.01

Ideal linear quality of 3 speed: 18.83

Ideal linear quality of 4 speed: 13.52

Ideal linear quality of 5 speed: 10.46

Ideal minimum taper speed: 6.27

Definition of "Minimum Taper": 0.00100

Ideal dynamic pierce speed: 23.29

Ideal dynamic pierce length: 0.242"

Time for ideal dynamic pierce: 0.62 sec.

Dwell time for stationary pierce: 14.02 sec.

Average speed for entire part: 17.64

Fastest speed when cutting: 21.17

Slowest speed when cutting: 1.17

Average speed when cutting: 13.56

Total time spent cutting: 143.14 min.

Total time spent traversing: 4.09 min.

Total time spent cycling relays: 3.57 min.

Number of corner passes added: 283



Error mapping is not enabled.

Tilt-A-Jet(R) is enabled.



sheet 2:

Material: bamboo

Machineability: 500

Thickness: 0.7500 inches

Tool offset: 0.0150 inches

Taper offset: 0.0000 deg (0.0000 inches)

Cut stand off: 0.0600 inches

Rotation: 0 deg

Estimated time to make this part: 2.9491 hours

Estimated cost to make this part: $73.73

Estimated abrasive needed: 143.97 Lbs.

Piercing: High pressure | Intelli-PIERCE(R)

Pierces: 68 (0 are wiggle pierces)

Cutting: High pressure

Width of path: 95.8210 (inches)

Height of path: 48.0593

Length of tool path: 2941.8500

Length of cutting: 2340.7760

(Values reported after tool offset applied.)

Pressure and nozzle setup:

High pressure setting: 45000.00 PSI

Low pressure setting: 20000.00 PSI

Mixing tube diameter: 0.0300 inches

Jewel diameter: 0.0140 inches

Abrasive flow rate: 0.8500 Lb/min

Abrasive size: 80.00 Mesh (US Std.)

Abrasive index: 1.00



Feed rate breakdown: (inches/min.)



Ideal linear quality of 1 speed: 34.99

Ideal linear quality of 2 speed: 30.01

Ideal linear quality of 3 speed: 18.83

Ideal linear quality of 4 speed: 13.52

Ideal linear quality of 5 speed: 10.46

Ideal minimum taper speed: 6.27

Definition of "Minimum Taper": 0.00100

Ideal dynamic pierce speed: 23.29

Ideal dynamic pierce length: 0.242"

Time for ideal dynamic pierce: 0.62 sec.

Dwell time for stationary pierce: 14.02 sec.

Average speed for entire part: 16.98

Fastest speed when cutting: 22.00

Slowest speed when cutting: 1.17

Average speed when cutting: 13.82

Total time spent cutting: 169.37 min.

Total time spent traversing: 3.83 min.

Total time spent cycling relays: 3.74 min.

Number of corner passes added: 201



Error mapping is not enabled.

Tilt-A-Jet(R) is enabled.



sheet 3:

Material: bamboo

Machineability: 500

Thickness: 0.7500 inches

Tool offset: 0.0150 inches

Taper offset: 0.0000 deg (0.0000 inches)

Cut stand off: 0.0600 inches

Rotation: 0 deg

Estimated time to make this part: 24.688 min.

Estimated cost to make this part: $10.29

Estimated abrasive needed: 20.43 Lbs.

Piercing: High pressure | Intelli-PIERCE(R)

Pierces: 4 (0 are wiggle pierces)

Cutting: High pressure

Width of path: 75.8726 (inches)

Height of path: 10.5950

Length of tool path: 385.0765

Length of cutting: 312.2366

(Values reported after tool offset applied.)

Pressure and nozzle setup:

High pressure setting: 45000.00 PSI

Low pressure setting: 20000.00 PSI

Mixing tube diameter: 0.0300 inches

Jewel diameter: 0.0140 inches

Abrasive flow rate: 0.8500 Lb/min

Abrasive size: 80.00 Mesh (US Std.)

Abrasive index: 1.00



Feed rate breakdown: (inches/min.)



Ideal linear quality of 1 speed: 34.99

Ideal linear quality of 2 speed: 30.01

Ideal linear quality of 3 speed: 18.83

Ideal linear quality of 4 speed: 13.52

Ideal linear quality of 5 speed: 10.46

Ideal minimum taper speed: 6.27

Definition of "Minimum Taper": 0.00100

Ideal dynamic pierce speed: 23.29

Ideal dynamic pierce length: 0.242"

Time for ideal dynamic pierce: 0.62 sec.

Dwell time for stationary pierce: 14.02 sec.

Average speed for entire part: 15.74

Fastest speed when cutting: 21.17

Slowest speed when cutting: 1.75

Average speed when cutting: 12.99

Total time spent cutting: 24.04 min.

Total time spent traversing: 0.43 min.

Total time spent cycling relays: 0.22 min.

Number of corner passes added: 54



Error mapping is not enabled.

Tilt-A-Jet(R) is enabled.



Step 4: Select Your Material : I Recommend PLYBOO.

I am in love with this material:

http://www.plyboo.com/

which i bought locally at:

http://www.pals4wood.com/

I got the 3/4” x 48” x 96” 3-ply | vertical cross core

it costs roughly $180.00 per 4x8 sheet, and you'll need two sheets for this project.

Step 5: Cut Parts on the Waterjet.

You could use old school joinery techniques and cut all these parts the old fashioned way (table saw, chisel, cross cut saw), but as I had the opportunity to, I tested using an OMAX waterjet for the parts.

I created a custom material in the OMAX library called BAMBOO with a hardness setting of 500 and cut the parts on a quality of 3. I used a longer than standard lead-in to minimise splitting of the ply.

Other cool tricks while cutting wood on this machine:

lower the water tank level so the ply isn't soaking in the water during the cut.

constantly force a jet of compressed air around the parts during the cut to prevent water soaking into the top of the plywood. This also blows away any garnet or discolored water that can discolor the parts.

in preference in future I would use plastic supports in the tank instead of the steel ones because when the jet was cutting over the steel the backwash was a discoloring liquid.

I took care to align the parts in the layout program to align the wood grain with the parts where i wanted it.

Step 6: Place Parts Out to Completely Dry.

Wanted to make sure all water was removed before finishing and assembling.

Step 7: Route Edges

I used a combination of bench router and hand edge router to do 1/8in rounds on all edges.

Step 8: Sand All Surfaces

220 grit was perfect for a light sanding to finish quality.

Step 9: Layout Components for Assembly.

this step is really an excuse for a cheesecake photo.

you can see the 53 components required to make both benches and the table!

Step 10: Assemble Table Like Lego...

With all the parts I followed the sequence implied by the schematic to put the whole table together.

Step 11: Assemble the Bench Like Lego...

similarly assemble the bench.

a clean rubber mallet is very useful.

also use some scraps of the plywood as the surface to be hit with the hammer (place between hammer and finished parts).

Step 12: Put the Squeeze on It.

I wasn't satisfied with the squeeze fit, so i put it under the 80tonne hydraulic press. While this was an enormous amount of fun, i later found that lubricating the joints with bathroom soap, then using the rubber mallet with high frequency taps did just as good or better job, without being as nerve wracking.

on the plus side, i found out that each side of the bench supported a massive 10 tonnes... YES, 10 TONNES !!!!

that's 2 elephants sitting at my dining table....

Step 13: Better Ways to Press It Together...

I also found that good old G-clamps and other clamps worked a treat.

Step 14: Linseed Oil...

This is the exciting bit. Closed to finished.

I decided on linseed oil over polyurethane because it is easier and not quite as toxic.

Apparently Linseed oil is like an eopxy that sets exothermically as it reacts with the wood. That's something really cool that I didn't know.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linseed_oil

I used boiled linseed oil, and it has worked really well. I applied with brush then wiped down with rags.

It needs to sit in sun and air for a few days for the smell to dissipate.

Step 15: Admire, Enjoy. Hopefully for a Lifetime and Then Some.

All up it took about 3 days.

About 4-6 hours for the CAD.
About 6 hours for the cutting.
About 4 hours for the sanding and the edge routing.
About 3-4 hours for the assembly.
About 4-6 hours for the Oiling.

Materials cost was around $400 and the cutting costs if you were to do it at a waterjet job shop would be about $300-400.

You can find a job shop here:
http://www.omax.com/jobshop.php

So all in all it's an expensive table, but I'm very proud of it's beauty and it looks great in my apartment.

Sure I'd change a few things about the design before building another one, but not too many. All in all a fabulous material and construction method for furniture.
Seriously?  A waterjet for wood jointery?  THAT IS SOOOOOO CHEATING!  But what a GREAT IDEA!
how much does it cost all together
Is that material really hard enough to require garnet? We cut plywood at my University all the time without the garnet on that very same Omax machine (which is incredibly awesome by the way!) <br/><br/>There is nothing in the world sweeter than gears cut from glass! =)<br/>
Very beautiful
Wow, that's beautiful! If only I had lots of fancy equipment. I would love a table like that. Nice job.
Wow. Waaaaaaay to much jargon for my simple mind. There I was thinking, "My dining room table is too big. Maybe I could make one like this!" Silly me! I think I'd rather wing it. Haha!
The table and benches are impressive, but more than that I want a water jet cutter. I never even dreamed that something like that existed. What I could really use though is an ultrasonic drill for cutting rock. Now if someone could just invent a cheaper one.
Neat! I envy your CAD-skillz.
you wouldnt happen to have the dragon2.dxf for the OMAX waterjet woulld you?
Sweet. I wish I had access to a water jet!
Beautifully impressive... Impressively beautiful. Just so awesome I want one in my house... stat!
Ok, maybe I missed something, but I couldn't figure out a way to fit everything on 2 sheets of plywood. Just the table, yet. But a table AND 2 benches? Not that I can see. Anyone else try to lay it out?
yeah, i think you are right. I suspect they fitted in the simpler version i didn't build but looks like you need 2.2 4x8 sheets, not 2... saul.
Awesome project. I have always loved bamboo and have always wondered how they make the planks for things like flooring and the "Plyboo" used in this table. Does anyone know how they do this? If you do, then please send me a PM or something. I have some bamboo in my backyard that I make things with, but would love to branch out (even though making these planks or something similar would probably be impossible for me to do).
Well hey, this is really nice. I seriously wish I had some woodworking influences when I was a kid. This looks like so much fun!
Fellas, this truly is an amazing furniture set. There is such a big market for this kind of furniture right now. Especially in the bay area there. Have you seriously considered selling these?
Lovely! Has something of an Arts & Crafts look, as in the early 20th Century style. The joinery and such also reminds me of the die cut joinery used in cardboard and wooden models such as the wooden dinosaur skeleton kits you can buy. Beautiful material too.
I've made a cabinet using birch ply with finger joints, cut with a water jet and also cut a stone top for it with an inlayed stainless steel design. Turned out better than i imagined and was really simple to put together only thing i found was i had to make an allowance for the tapered cut on the water jet otherwise it took some serious "persuading" to fit it all together. Nice Job
I'd love to see photos of what you did. The waterjet I used has the "tiltajet" option which offsets the taper and gives perfectly straight sides.... much less "persuasion" required.
Ill see if i can dig out some build photo's. maybe if i email them to you and you add them to your post as another example.
absolutely awesome..i love the joints...i like the fact that they're all doubled up etc...really nice table (wish i had a flojet...you lucky sonofa...)
one word: beautiful
Great job guys! Are you going to be selling these as kits? I'd buy a set in a minute!
Seems like the cost would be at least $600 + shipping. Probably more like $700-800. I have no clue how much a new table would cost so not sure if this is high or low.
If you use another type of wood and a cheaper way to cut the wood, the price would surely stay under the $200.
I believe "beefcake" is the preferred term for pix of men...
I don't get it... What this to do with this instructable?
Ha! LasVegas, you have found a bug. Good work ;) I wrote that comment on Step 8 (q.v.) but it is also showing up on the intro. I've put it on the Fix List.
hehehe! Now I understand the comment! I would say that, that pic would more qualify as cheesecake. :)

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