Timber. Buying Burr Black Walnut Veneer.A Makers Year. 6:

This has become a day of “doing the rounds” of suppliers. I first called in at my veneer supplier near Bridgewater. Munday’s veneers have been providing me and the students at Rowden with veneers for over 30 years. The other big veneer supplier is Capital Crispin’s in London. But that’s long a drive from North Devon. But when you set out, you have to be prepared to go the full distance and see what Capital Crispin’s have.


In this case, I was lucky. I was looking for large black walnut burr veneers. The table we’re doing for Dubai is 3 meters long and 1.5 meters wide. It’s a giant elliptical table and I needed a veneer pattern that would accomodate that shape. What I found was a bundle of twenty four leaves of wonderful Black Walnut burr that has this intense dark burr diagonally across the rectangular pattern. This lends itself beautifully to be laid up as a diamond match. So we create a dark centre to the table and book match the lighter part of the leaves around the edge of the table.

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In this case, we’ll probably use ten or twelve leaves. I had to buy the full bundle of 24 leaves. Which effectively leaves me with another table top. It’s expensive and slightly irritating that you end up with these part bundles that “may come in useful later”. And of course, they never do. They sit patiently waiting until you to remember them gathering dust on a shelf in a machine shop. These burrs, however, are so startling that I’m hoping that there is extra work in this house that will be a continuation of the dining room. This is where we can say “Well we have a few more leaves of that bundle like the dining room table.” So that shortened my journey and emptied my pocket.


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