Building A Kitchen Island Part 1: Working With Homemade Lumber

| 10/18/2011 1:32:00 PM

Tags: kitchen, woodworking, tools, woodlot,

GRIT Editor Hank Will at the wheel of his 1964 IH pickup.(1)Last weekend I finally got around to building a kitchen island using some of the lumber I milled early last spring. Building with homemade lumber takes a little more time, but the payoff is huge in satisfaction, price and the fact that you get to control the dimensions of the boards. Next time you are in the mood to build a kitchen island, I encourage you to begin by heading out to the woodlot and try your hand at working with homemade lumber

You might recall our kitchen project from early this year. There are a couple of finishing touches that need to be completed to call the project done. One is the kitchen island and the other is building a new light fixture. After a long hot summer of more pressing farm chores, when I awoke last Saturday, I knew the time was right for setting to on the kitchen island.

Granbergs Alaskan Sawmill: making the money cuts. 

The project began with the felling and milling of a long-dead pine in our slowly dying pine grove. I used to mourn the passing of each tree, now I look at it with an eye for opportunity.

 Resawing home-milled lumber 

Once I had the timbers in hand, I needed to resaw them into dimensions that made sense for an old-school, farmhouse-style kitchen island. This I accomplished with my table saw.

Hank Will_2
10/24/2011 4:25:47 PM

Hey Susy -- Needless to say I didn't make any progress last weekend. I got diverted by a cabinet tearout to expose the house's original chimney, which can take a liner for a wood-burning stove. Pretty exciting possibility to cut the propane bill by 3/4 and be more comfortable in winter. We have so many windfall hardwoods and hedgerows that need thinning. I should make some progress on the island next weekend. The Gorilla glue worked great and when I released the clamps, the frame stayed flat and square. Stay tuned. Hank

Chiot's Run
10/19/2011 11:02:27 AM

This is so great. As you know, we're considering purchasing one of these home mill set ups like you used. I've been watching & waiting for this post. I can't wait to see the finished product!

Hank Will_2
10/19/2011 8:44:11 AM

Hey Dave Larson -- I've been totally fascinated with and inspired by your adventures and projects. Thanks for the kind words. Karen told me on Sunday that she was OK to wait a bit longer if I would mill the sides out of pine and the 2-inch thick top out of black walnut and hackberry for a butcher-block kind of look. I'm excited to get to those pieces after I get the framing done. I was going to work on it this weekend, but the chimney repair guy is coming and I need to do a bit of demolition in the living room to make access. Nebraska Dave- I thouroughly enjoy reading about and am also inspired by your adventures with wood, blocks, old stock tanks and you name it. I thought about you when I was pulling 1/0 copper wire through conduit while on vacation a couple of weeks ago. I know you would have known an easier way to do it. Thanks to you both. Hank

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