Santa Business (aka Cutting Boards)

This here build is something I completed well before christmas. Since the products were presents for family & friends I chose to post-pone making a post to after christmas. No point running a risk of ruining the surprise for everyone!

It's a cutting board!

It’s a cutting board made from oak!

What got me into this project was that I had some leftover Ikea countertop pieces from a kitchen renovation I did at the apartment this july. These countertops are solid oak and were thus rather expensive (about 1700€ all-in-all). Pretty easy to guess whether I felt like tossing any usable leftover pieces.. :)

Anyway, fast-forward to late november and it hit me that perhaps I could make some cutting boards from these leftovers and give them as presents. I’ve also been planning to learn how to use a plunge router (esp. keeping the case for my TTSH project in mind) so this was a great starter project for doing exactly that. The other supplies needed for the project added up to about 80€. These included a router bit set, can of poppyseed oil and a small paint brush.

Work It

I think actually the most effort went to taking the pieces of oak from one place to another. The table saw I used to cut the boards to size is in a different location than the router, so a bit of bicycle logistics was needed. The cut boards measure a little under 22cm * 26 cm, are 4 cm thick and weigh around 1.7 kg each. All in all I had leftovers to make eight boards, and transporting the ~15kg of oak on a bicycle was far from convenient.

Plunge router a-go-go

Plunge router a-go-go.

Rounded edges

Rounded edges up close.

With the plunge router I rounded all the horizontal edges and cut a concave groove about 7 mm wide on both cutting faces. Making this groove got pretty tricky around the corners, as there the travel guide on the router made very little contact with the board sides. I made some kind of feed error on each of the boards despite I tried to work the groove corners extra careful. Not the best looking end results, but let’s call it that ‘human touch‘ to show the boards were handmade ;)

After the routing, a quick sanding with 240 grit and on to apply the poppyseed oil. I left both the faces to absorb the oil overnight, then wiped away the remainders the following morning.

Poppyseed oil applied

Poppyseed oil applied.

Groove routing, not so neat around the corners

Groove routing, not so neat around the corners.

Few of the boards had strips which would absorb the oil (almost strangely) fast compared to adjacent strips. I did a couple of wet-on-wet repeat passes for such strips, but they just kept absorbing. No idea why so and where did all the oil go. Thirsty strips I guess :)

Uneven absorption of poppy oil

That one strip in the middle just kept absorbing the poppy oil.

And that’s that: Cutting boards all good!

Happy new year everyone!!

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2 responses to “Santa Business (aka Cutting Boards)”

  1. atkokosplace says :

    That is awesome. It brings back a lot of great memories. I made my first cutting board in the 7th grade! It was great fun and I’ve been addicted ever since! Well done to you and great use of using leftover materials! Happy New Year! Cheers, Koko :)

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