Epoxy River Coffee Table

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About: Hello, my name is Gabriel, born and raised in south-east Poland. Even though my grandfather and father were working with wood all their lives I got interested in it in 2014. Somehow I didn't feel like crafti...

Some time ago I managed to make my first instructable presenting to you guys a console table with epoxy resin inlays. Now it's time for somethin new. Epoxy River Coffee Table - walnut slab with resin.

Hope you enjoy the story!

Step 1: Cleaning and Removing Bad Things

So, I've acquired another great slab of walnut. Originally it was 2,5 meters long so decision was made to cut it in half. After doing so, the slab cracked into 2 beautiful pieces. I used a steel brush and a drill to remove cortex from the edges and all ather loose pieces off rotten wood. Of course the slab was leveld and sanded a bit.

Step 2: The Connection

In order to put resin on this beauty I had to connect the slabs somehow. So the slabs were drilled with a 12mm drill and prepared to fit a 12mm stainles tube.

Step 3: 1st Pour

After taping the back with packing tape time came to do the first pour of resin. I used the same epoxy that was used with the pervious work (click here). A thin layer of well mized epo cured to be beautifully crystal clear.

Step 4: Meantime Activities

In the meantime between pours of epoxy I welded legs for this coffee table. 6 by 2 steel profile was cut into short pieces and welded (with a little help from my friend). I used flap sanding discs to "polish" the steel, nut the effext did not satisfy me so I sanded it with 120/150/180 grit sanding paper to give it a satin look.

Step 5: More and More...

Pouring thin layers of epoxy took a long time, every pour cured 16 to 24 hours and took ages to do it. But finally all the cracks were filled with resin and left for 3 days to cure. Why 3? To be sure that it hardened perfectly.

Step 6: Preparations Befor Sanding

When the resin got 100% hard it was time to remove the protective tape. The first impression was great, but looking close I saw that the tape folded and it was visible through the resin. But before any further work I had to see if what I have done already was consistent with the vision in my head how it was supposed to look like. And surprisingly it looks just like in my head 4 weeks ago.

Step 7: Sanding, Sanding...

Being sure that the epoxy is cured I started sandig it with a 100 grit paper. I use this tool, doing it manually would take another month to get rid of all the extra resin. The pictures were taken halfway through snading. Still a lot to work on, and most important polishing the epoxy to high gloss.

You have to remember this important thing: when sanding epoxy resin the amount of white dust is unbelievable and covers everything what's in your workshop. It's good to use a dust mask and all avaliable protective gear you can think of. Just for your own health.

Step 8: More Sanding

After all the previous sanding I had to sand it a bit more to smooth the surface (resin), but still to be a bit rough (wood).

Step 9: Water and Sanding Paper

When the slab was sanded time came to work on the resin inlay. I used water sandpaper (1000, 1500, 2000, 2500) and manually sanded it. Too a while to do it, but it looked better and better.

Step 10: Polishing the River

After water sandind the resin was still mat. To polish it I used Tempo and a furry polishing pad. THe resin was polished on all sides (top, bottom, left and right). Also used a special polish used by my brother to polish restored and painted motorcycle parts. Unfortunately I don't know the producer of it.

Step 11: Metal Work

The slab was polised and to have a little break on the woodwork I measured the right places to drill holes in the legs. 8mm and 16mm drills were used (I want to hide the bolts screwing them from below). Slightly polished the metal was covered with clear spray varnish. As you can see in the pictures the slab is slightly darker on the edges, but you'll read about it the the next step ;)

Step 12: Finishing

The work is almost finished. The wood sanded, epoxy polished and all put toghether to see how it fits.

Step 13: Oiling the Slab

To finish the woodwork I thought of usig sepcial oil. All the information on it is in the picture, except for the price, a 0.8 litre can costs about 80 PLN (about 20 USD). It's a german product, and gives very satisfying effects on the wood, and no matter if it's oak, ash, pine or walnut. Satin touch and look.

Ther one thing that you might want to look out when applying the oil. It somehow reacts wtih the epoxy and makes it mat. Even when left for a few seconds it ruins all the polishing work.

Step 14: The Last Step

Now the Epoxy River Coffee Table is done. Legs screwed to the slab, all the wooden surface covered with oil so final toush to the resin is being taken. For the fact, the the epoxy reacted with oil, it's was polished again.

The work is done, workshop cleaned and gathering ideas for another piece of woodwork. Hope you have enjoyed my instructable. If you have any questions feel free to ask them.

2 People Made This Project!

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63 Discussions

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Ol dadHomegiftVN2

Reply 2 months ago

You should do instructables on your products!

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AlexC610

Question 3 months ago

Hello Sir,

Did the orbital sander work for you to remove any excess epoxy on the bottom of the table? I just finished mine and there's some minor bleeding but nothing to panic about. just waiting to make sure the epoxy is 100% cured before i start sanding. i can maybe use a manual planer or a belt sander but i do prefer the orbital sander over both those tools. So if the orbital sander worked, then great, i'll use that.

Thanks!

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Gabriel_S_PLAlexC610

Answer 3 months ago

The orbital sander worked perfectly for me. It took some time, but it removed all the excess epoxy. Just remember to use dust mask.

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AlexC610Gabriel_S_PL

Reply 3 months ago

Thanks Gabriel. I'll give it a go with my orbital sander. If that doesnt work, I'll get myself a hand planer and do it the old fashioned way :-)

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bigbull666

Question 4 months ago on Step 2

Hello,
I would like to build my own epoxy table, but I am little concerned about temperature stability of epoxy risen. It should hold 55-60°C, but when you make for example a hot soup, the bowl with soup could has much higher temperature then 60°C. Do you have any expirience with this?

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Gabriel_S_PLbigbull666

Answer 4 months ago

Unfortunatelly, I have no experience with temperature on my own. But as far as I know, properly mixed and cured resin should hold up to 230 degrees centigrade, but i strongly recommend looking into the Technical Specifications of your epoxy, you should find the answer to your question there.

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world7766

Question 4 months ago

Hi Dear, Im Mohammad Ali From Pakistan.

I have a big problem with my epoxy tables, i made 5 epoxy tables 3 months ago and now from 3 days im noticing my tables are start bending and cracking from straight surface to bending upwards from center,,,

Why it is Happening ????.

And let me tell you something,

I sand my live edge tables with water sanding papers , i mean wet sanding, is that was the problem ????.

And i pour oil into my tables from down side for finished look at the last, is that was the problem ????.

Im attaching some pictures please see them and help me out with this problem Please. Please reply me as soon as possible its an emergency,

Please help me out with this,i spent alot of money on these 5 porjects..

ALOTS OF LOVE FROM PAKISTAN..

IMG_20181013_154509358.jpgIMG_20181013_154332440.jpgIMG_20181013_154631076.jpgIMG_20181013_154648214.jpgIMG_20181013_154350720.jpgIMG_20181013_154422509.jpgIMG_20181013_154538045.jpgIMG_20181013_154341185.jpgIMG_20181013_154551550.jpgIMG_20181013_154407635.jpgIMG_20181013_154411628.jpg
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Gabriel_S_PLworld7766

Answer 4 months ago

Hello,

your problem might be the proportions of epoxy/hardener. It must be measured precisely. OTher thing to think about is the wood huminidty. 8-10% is good, otherwise it will bent while drying in higher temperature (when epoxy hardens it produces temperature).

I water sanded my projects as well but it had no influence on the effect, so it shouldn't be a problem. Oiling my tables did not do any bad to them so I suppose it is not the problem either.

All in all I think your problem might be in the precise measurement of the epoxy and hardener.

Regards
Gabriel

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hansrajk1

Question 6 months ago on Introduction

Sir I want to know which type of wood we can used for epoxy. Also want to know the bottom or side boundary wall material which hold the epoxy

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Gabriel_S_PLhansrajk1

Answer 6 months ago

I used walnut for my epoxy projects, but any type is ok in my opinion. Ash, oak or any other as long as it's the right looks, which you look for.
For the bottom/ side I used packing tape like this https://alfaoffice.pl/images/99719.jpg and it worked fine. There are probably better ways to secure sides and bottom, but I didn't find them ;)

Good luck on your work!

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hansrajk1

6 months ago

Sir I want to know which type of wood we can used for epoxy. Also want to know material of bottom and side packing

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ArtHouseTieZ

Question 10 months ago

I love your beautiful work!
I have a question. Which brand and what product name of epoxy did you use for it?

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Gabriel_S_PLArtHouseTieZ

Answer 10 months ago

Brand: Techniart, product: Techniplast 400. I found it and bought it over the internet.

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Gabriel_S_PLMichaelA227

Answer 10 months ago

It was more or less 5 millimeters. Thanks to that it didn't boil.

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Gabriel_S_PLKryssyT

Answer 11 months ago

Whole slab was about 2,5 meters long and more or less 50 cm wide, 2 inches thick.
It took about 3 kilograms of epoxy to fill th e gap.

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DiederickB

Question 11 months ago

How much epoxy did you use? Could you tell me the length width and depth of that gap?