I got this beautiful piece of black walnut, and was commissioned to make an industrial style shelf with it.
The finish was a marine varnish because the shelf was designed for a pool room.
Check out the Youtube video for a complete tutorial on the steps I took to make this shelf.
Step 1: Wood Prep and Sealing
My black walnut came kiln dried and planed down so it was already pretty smooth. I sanded it with my DA sander (dual action) with some 600 grit just to get it super smooth.
The finish I put on it was a marine grade varnish polyurethane. This stuff is tricky to work with because you can't lay it on too thick or it wont dry, and if you lay it on too thin, the wood just soaks it up. Also it requires 24 hours to cure in between coats per side. So needless to say, it took forever to get 4 coats on this thing.
Step 2: Industrial Gas Pipe Mounting
The mounting for this shelf is just gas pipe that I capped and cleaned off after putting an elbow on to get a 90 degree bend.
Put the pipe in the vise and tighten till they stop spinning! But not too much or you will crack the cast iron.
Step 3: Drilling the Holes
2 pair of holes were drilled in each shelf mount. 2 holes to mount to the studs in the wall, and 2 holes for securing the shelf to the mounts themselves.
I used my milling machine to drill out the holes and then a countersink so the screws would sit flush when installed.
Step 4: Clean Up the Mounts
I cleaned up the holes with the bench grinder to get rid of any burrs or sharp edges.
Then prepped them for paint by running them on the wire wheel and then using acetone and brake cleaner to clean all the oils off of them for painting.
Then just a simple prime and paint with 4 coats.
Step 5: Fin!
And here is a look at the shelf after it is test installed.
I love the look of the black walnut.
Please check out the Youtube video and give me a thumbs up!
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