I had some leftover time and material at after another project so I used the tools at Techshop SF to make this chopping/serving board.  It was very simple to make, here's what I used:
  • Piece of nice hardwood.  I think the piece I had was maple but I got it from a bargain bin so I'm not sure.
  • Mitre saw.
  • 1 1/8" Forstner bit.
  • Belt sander.
  • Random-orbit palm sander.
  • Sand paper in 120, 22, 320, 400, 600grits.
  • Butcher's block oil/wax.
  • Bag-o-rags for applying/buffing the wax.

Step 1: Shape the Piece

I started with a small rectangular plank.  To add a bit of interest, I used the mitre saw to cut both ends at a shallow angle.  If you don't have a mitre saw, you could simply mark a pencil line across and cut by hand with a crosscut saw.  The shape and angle are up to you.  If you have a belt sander or a band saw you could cut along a curve.

Once I'd cut the ends, I used the belt sander to round all the corners.  The tension in the belt gave the slight round on the long sides, which I like.  The belt sander cuts very quickly so be careful you don't take away too much material.  It's really easy to round over the edges of the long sides by hand using 120 grit or a file if you want to be cautious.

Once you have the shape you want, use a drill press and a Forstner bit to cut the finger hole.  It's best to go slowly and keep backing off the cut to let the shavings out.  I used a sacrificial MDF board underneath since it reduced the amount of tear out.
Looks nice. Are you now using it for food prep for yourself where you eat the food that's cut on it?
I haven't used it for cutting. I think I'll probably use it for serving cheese or antipasti instead to preserve it's appearance. The finish I used was explicitly for chopping boards so it's food safe.

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