I'm building a desktop for the built-in desk and library unit in our
study. The shelves and cabinets are white. I was researching on here
and it seems like the good hardwoods to use would be either maple or
birch. I'm leaning towards hard maple. I want to know if hard maple
butcher block would make for a good desktop area. I like the look of
butcher block even though its for an office (the office will also be a
place where kids can do homework eventually, the kids are 2 right now)
I've done a little research about butcher block but don't know how well
it would standup to say writing letters, paying bills, a 2 year old
writing on it with crayon.
I'm at a loss here...Honest opinions needed.
If you're talking about end-grain hard maple it will stand up for decades as
a factory floor with fork lifts running over it ahe heavy machinery being
dragged across it and all sorts of weird and exciting subtances being
spilled on it.
If you don't have a wide-platen drum or belt sander though getting a flat
surface could be problematical.
Maple planking will be just fine for the purpose and since it can go through
a planer without the tearout that you get with end grain getting a flat
surface is a lot simpler.
The easiest, and cheapest would be the style that uses long pieces of wood
vs. the self healing end grain style.
The hard maple would do very well for a writing surface but be sure that you
do get hard maple.
I would still cover it with 3/4" hardwood plywood such as a cherry, oak,
walnut and trim edges or you can go with a nice butcher block counter top. I
myself would not like the kitchen look oh. just me. I would rather go with a
black marble look myself to contrast the white. Just me.
If you shoot several coats of poly on hard maple it will suffer the
slings and arrows of outragious correspondece for years. I did my
kitchen counter tops this way a few years ago and my family can't seem
to hurt them.
Check out this for an idea for your top. This gentleman just finished a bar
for a neighbor and used Walnut and Maple for the unit. Check out the top of
the bar. May be something you like.
I made up my maple desk top out of maple flooring. It is about 80" x
34" x 1.5". I made it in 3 sections that would fit through the planer
and then glued the 3 sections together with double rows of biscuits.
A lot of sanding was still needed to get everything flat.
It works fine for me, but if I slide my fingers across the planks, I
can feel each joint. It isn't enough to cause any problems writing on
a piece of paper. Part of the problem may be the crappy wood they use
in flooring, and part of it maybe that I only put 4 or 5 coats of
polyurethane on the bottom and many more coats on the top.
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