So I have these legs kicking around for a dining table. The legs were from a Room and Board table that I had. The top was originally glass, and I hate glass tables. I know, it is silly, but just seeing through the table to see everyone’s legs seems weird to me, so I don’t like it. In addition to my own personal issues with glass tables the glass was also chipped on this table. So I have thought about what I want to make to replace the top.
One day a friend name James Davis was coming up with some new ideas and I happened to have a truck and was willing to travel. James has been experimenting with Electricity, water and wood. It really sounds pretty much like a terrible idea when you list out the ingredients. But take a moment to google Lichtenberg figures and you will be pretty interested in the results!
The electricity burns channels into the wood. This is guided (sorta) by the water that is applied. Once done the channels can be as much as about 1/8″ deep and need to be filled in. James uses epoxy to fill in the channels. With some good sanding I was able to clean up the rest of this Walnut top and get it ready for finishing. The wipe on poly finish really brought out the wood color.
I’ll be honest with you, this is a tough project.. not because it was exceptionally difficult or took a long time. It was tough because of self control. While creating the Lichtenberg figures I just wanted to watch more and more, but somehow you have to control yourself otherwise you will end up with a table that has too many patterns on it! I think this table ended up, just asymmetric enough and with just enough figures to make it interesting without so much patterning that it would be too busy. If it were in my budget I would have loved to start with a large piece of wood, one slab rather than a butcher block top. Maybe next time.