Unfortunate Attempt To Remove A Dent - What Now?

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Hi,
I made a error and could use some opinions.
A table top under construction fell over and got a tiny nick. The water and heat trick didn't remove it. I didn't want to fill it or leave it so I sanded down around it. Now I have a shallow dish at most 1/32" deep and about 2" x 3" in my table top. It isn't noticeable but you can feel it if you run your hand over it. Also, a glass or cup will not sit properly on it. I wish I'd left the nick in there.
Would you leave it, sand down the area around the dish to make it less apparent, or sand down the entire table top? All I have is an inexpensive pad sander. The table top is a soft pine with knots. Previous attempts to hand plane this wood were not good.
Thanks, Gary
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Hello, Gary. If it were me, I would leave it. You are now in the twilight zone of the more you screw with it the worse it will get. You could have filled the little nick pretty easily with some kind of thick CA or epoxy, but you can't fill a larger divot.
And believe me, if you are trying to get an even surface on knotty pine with anything other than a belt sander, you are batting up short flies. If you try to sand down that whole top to flat, your little pad sander will eat away the soft wood around those knots and every one will protrude. (Had to make that mistake myself a few years ago.)
If you are worried about someone seeing it and commenting, don't. It is probable that no one will see it if you leave it (except you). And of course.you could always do the professional thing (ahem...) and blame it on today's crappy materials. Damn those vendors!
Finish up your table and on to the next project.
YMMV. My 0.02 may be worth exactly that.
Robert
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wrote:

1) "Of course it has a somewhat random surface, after all, wood is very organic and always alive in it's beauty."
2) "A handcrafted top will never look like it was machine made. If I wanted that look, I would have used laminated particle board."
3) "Did you know that all the windshields on Ferarri TestaRossas are a little bit different?" "It's because they're hand-made and each one is fitted custom."
4) "Each of the 11 Sunflower paintings by Van Gogh is different. Of course he could have silk-screened a batch of them..."
5) "This is referred to by the artisans as 'character'."
6) "It's the equivalent of a crop circle. We don't talk about those much."
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Printed and posted on the shop wall. Thanks Rob!!!
jc
1) "Of course it has a somewhat random surface, after all, wood is very organic and always alive in it's beauty."
2) "A handcrafted top will never look like it was machine made. If I wanted that look, I would have used laminated particle board."
3) "Did you know that all the windshields on Ferarri TestaRossas are a little bit different?" "It's because they're hand-made and each one is fitted custom."
4) "Each of the 11 Sunflower paintings by Van Gogh is different. Of course he could have silk-screened a batch of them..."
5) "This is referred to by the artisans as 'character'."
6) "It's the equivalent of a crop circle. We don't talk about those much."
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wrote:

But that was a long time ago. The History or Discovery Channel has a documentary on the Ferrari plant. Their design and manufacturing facilities are even more impressive than their cars - ultra-modern, computerized, and the latest in automation mixed with skilled craftsmanship. One of their buildings has growing trees inside to freshen the air and enhance the work environment. If you ever get a chance the program is well worth seeing. Reportedly, Ferrari spent $8USD in computer simulations to optimized the sound of the 360's exhaust. If you've never heard a 360 the sound it makes is magnificent.
Gary
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I know it must be a typo but............ $8 USD is not much to spend on simulations.

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Maybe it's an average of $8 per car?
Puckdropper
--
Marching to the beat of a different drum is great... unless you're in
marching band.
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Like the sound one makes when passing gas after drinking a lot of absinthe? You know.."Absinth makes farts go Honda?"
Look, put down that weapon...I didn't make it up.. just passing it along...
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Robatoy wrote:

OMFG.
I'ma gonna copy that and print it for SWMBO to prove that I"m not even close to being the worst.
--
Tanus

This is not really a sig.
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I had the same idea!
Robotoy, for punishment you are to spend 30 seconds reading Vogon poetry.
Puckdropper
--
Marching to the beat of a different drum is great... unless you're in
marching band.
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Ahem... Robatoy.
Puckdropper
--
Marching to the beat of a different drum is great... unless you're in
marching band.
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Oops!! That should be $8 million USD for simulations.
Gary
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How does the bottom look?
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abby wrote:

There are a couple of possibilities.
If it's in a "convenient" location for doing so, you might drill it and put in a raised plug that you then sand down flush. Do the same at three other symmetrically located positions and use a contrasting color wood and it becomes a "feature".
Another possibility would be to put one of the high build self-levelling pourable bar finishes on it. That will give you a level, very durable surface but you might not like the look and the stuff's not cheap. http://www.epoxyproducts.com/bartop.html has a good description of that manufacturer's product and the application procedures (the web site design is horrible though).
--
--
--John
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abby wrote:

you could take it to someone with a LARGE wide-belt sander and sand the entire top flat again.
Wayne
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You can inlay something in that spot, maybe even a contrasting wood or a very large knot. How about a nameplate: "This table made by John Doe, January , 2008."
Shellac is a good first coat for pine. You could build up the spot with several coats of clear shellac and then level it, perhaps with that hand plane set for very very thin shavings, the kind that float up and collect on the ceiling, then give the whole table a once over with shellac and follow with your topcoat.
Or you could do what the garage door manufacturer did with the hole they punched on the inside of the door my father bought from them--cover it with a decal that says: "Inspected by number 23".
--
FF




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HA! One of my first jobs was finishing interiors in mobile homes... not trailers, the kind you drive around in. The interior walls were made of synthetic wallboards.... like formica or something. When somebody dinged up a wall, we covered the dings with those little pastic and wood "cookies" or "rosettes". And then stood back and put some more up to compliment the pattern.
Like it fooled anybody.
-Zz
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Sand the divot to 200 and finish it. It's proof the table was made by a human. Now distress it by having your girlfriend walk across it with a pair of high heels.
To quickly remove tiny nicks, apply a couple of drops of superglue and sand until dry. Repeat until the repair is flush, invisible. Spot might be slightly darker.
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My girlfriend resembles that remark.

THat exactly what she does. I'll vouch for the spots being darker.
T.E. Stosterone
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| Hi, | | I made a error and could use some opinions. | | A table top under construction fell over and got a tiny nick. | The water and heat trick didn't remove it. I didn't want to | fill it or leave it so I sanded down around it. Now I have a | shallow dish at most 1/32" deep and about 2" x 3" in my | table top. It isn't noticeable but you can feel it if you run your | hand over it. Also, a glass or cup will not sit properly on it. | I wish I'd left the nick in there. | | Would you leave it, sand down the area around the dish to | make it less apparent, or sand down the entire table top? | All I have is an inexpensive pad sander. The table top is a | soft pine with knots. Previous attempts to hand plane this | wood were not good.
First, I'd think about flipping the top over and using the bottom.
Second, I'd plane the entire top down to flat and sand, or worst case sand the entire top down to level. If you completely sand the top use a long sanding block and 40-60 grit paper to do the initial leveling and then work up through finer grades.
Third, cut a large knot out of another piece of pine, inlet it into the depressed area, dress to flat.
Forth, turn back time and repeatedly steam the dent to raise it. I use a wet wash cloth and a clothes iron in situations like this. It is rare that I cannot get a dent to raise completely through repeated applications of steam.
Fifth, turn back time and place the top so it cannot fall over. ;~)
John
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