Modern Curved Glass Top Coffee Table

This past semester, I built a modern coffee table for a very good friend of mine in D.C.  The main concept was to have a coffee table that looked like one cohesive table, but was then able to pull apart and serve as two end tables when the apartment got crowded during large social gatherings. It is made up of multiple bent laminations (taking thin strips of wood and gluing them together to make a thicker piece that can then be more easily manipulated into a curved shape).

I wanted to play with the negative space of this piece, so I stacked the laminations on top of each other, with only a few spacers in between.

Over the next few weeks, I will post the progress and final pictures of this table.

This first photo is a full scale drawing of one of the "C" curves. Two "C" curves eventually fit together to form one "S" curve.

full scale drawing

This table is made of Ash.  I specifically selected very straight grained boards so that the table would have a cohesive look.  I picked Ash because it is a very open-pored wood and the grain will stand out when finish was applied.  I will point this out on one of the final pictures.

the Ash before ripping

the thin rips stacked on themselves

After the wood was cut into 3/16" thin strips, I then glued 9 strips to make 1 large bend.  Below, you can see me gluing the strips and wrapping them with heavy duty stretch wrap (to help serve as a clamp) before putting them around my form.  With 12 different sized bends on the taller table and 10 bends on the smaller one, I decided to built an adjustable bending table so that I could adjust the radius for each bend without having to build 12 different forms.

the adjustable bending table with 2 different sized "C" curved shapes

I went through a gallon of glue after 22 bends (with 9 strips each)

wrapping up a bend... will get to pick the glue off of my hands later :-)

slowly bending the wood around my form

waiting for glue to dry...

This was the process for just 1 bend.  I did this 21 more times (ok, 22 more times... I

Stay tuned for more progress of the finishing process.

If you want to see previous pictures, go to:  http://aliciadietzwoodworking.wordpress.com/2013/06/06/update-1-to-modern-glass-top-coffee-table/

Follow this blog to get more progress pictures:  http://aliciadietzwoodworking.wordpress.com/follow-blog/