I am preparing to build a 77" x 45" dining table out of solid Wenge. I am planning on buying 8/4 stock and resawing it to 5/4 for the top. To recycle some of the waste, I plan on gluing some of the resaw remainders together to form new planks that can be used for some of the middle pieces of the table (since from the surface you can't see any seams). The top will be edgeglued planks without any trim or edge rail. So the ends of the table will have exposed grain. I am planning on using a router to put a quarter round edge all the way around (maybe).
Aside from a small 'test' project, I've never worked with Wenge and have a few questions for those more-seasoned woodworkers.
- What sorts of problems should I expect to run into while using this wood? I am aware that it is brittle and splinters easily.
- Will a router be able to put a quarter round across the grain on the ends of the tabletop?
- Will the table still splinter at the ends once a nice finish is applied?
- I'm thinking of possibly spraying on lacquer (if I can find a new local supplier). Are there better alternatives? I'm looking for a satin finish.
- If I surface glue two planks together (remains of resawing 8/4 down to 5/4), and use these for middle pieces of the table, will the glue seam be noticeable on the ends of the table?
- Will Wenge ruin the blades on my thickness planer and jointer?
- Are there recommended techniques for handling this wood to minimize destruction to my tools? (such as planing in small increments)
Thanks everyone for your feedback. I will post pictures of the finished product if I survive this one!