Category Archives: Cutting Boards

The Trouble With Trivets

Okay, sorry, the title was total click bait. There was no trouble. And I’m not even sure these are trivets, technically. I just couldn’t resist the alliteration.

Here are three small (five-and-a-half inches square by 3/4) trivets. Or perhaps they are very small cheese trays, or maybe they are breadboards for a doll house at about one-third or one-quarter scale. Or super-thick coasters.


The important thing is, I used up some scrap wood. The wood species (working outward from the center) are walnut, maple, purpleheart, and cherry.

Trivets + Mug

(Click either photo to view larger on Flickr)

Piggy Cutting Board

Piggy Cutting Board

I unepectedly came upon the template for this fellow a while back, and decided I would make another one. I did the original back in 2009, and my sister has it. Actually the original was one we just had lying around that finally got destroyed, so I made a template of it and made a new one, and now a second new one, as seen above.

Here’s the first one from 2009:

Piggy Cutting Board

Click any photo to view larger on Flickr

End Grain Cutting Board

I’d been toying with the idea of trying an end grain cutting board for quite some time. Years, in fact – since before I started making any cutting boards at all. My first inquiries online brought me quickly to this article on The Wood Whisperer website, “How to Make a Butcher Block End Grain Cutting Board” containing what has come to be called, since its first appearance in 2006, “the video that launched a thousand cutting boards”.

What held me back for so long was my concern about how to thickness the cutting board. The preferred method seemed to be to use a drum sander (thickness sander), which I do not have, and do not have room for. The less problematic edge grain cutting boards I went on to build (like these or like these) were fine to run through the planer, but end grain boards and thickness planers are not a good mix (see this cautionary article and pretty convincing anecdotal evidence).

So of the alternative approaches I could take, including hand planes and router jigs, I opted for a belt sander. (Reasonable cash outlay, and something I should probably have around for general use anyway). Next up was figuring out a design. Turns out there are a couple of ways to go about constructing an end grain board, but for the approach taken in Marc’s video, there’s a very cool cutting board designer called, er, Cutting Board Designer (or CBdesigner) that I found excellent for planning my build.

CBdesigner screenshot

You can export or print your design in PDF format, giving something like the above screenshot to take into the shop. And you can export the final design itself as a JPG, to admire its wonderfulness before proceeding, as seen below.

CB designer - JPG of final design

The match between expectations and final product, design-wise, was pretty impressive. It looked almost exactly as it was meant to in that regard.

End Grain Cutting Board

End Grain Cutting Board

Unfortunately, my belt sander technique still needs some work, and some over-zealous and in places uneven sanding resulted in a board that photographs well from one side, but which is not quite up to my not unreasonable standards for release into the wild. We’ll give it a good home though.

So not bad for a first effort, but I need to try try again…

New Big Stripey Boards

Too late for the Christmas Market Day, but they’ll keep… These new Big Stripey Boards are about 12″ x 16″, and about an inch thick.

Big Stripey Boards

Species, from the centre outwards:


Big Stripey Board – Now with Zebrawood!

My latest Big Stripey Board, now featuring Zebrawood. I love what the zebrawood adds, I’ll be doing that again for sure. Species from the outside edges are Purpleheart, Quilted Maple, Walnut, Zebrawood, then Purpleheart again, then Maple in the middle.

The board measures 10″ x 15″ by 1.25″. Usual features include finger grip recesses for easy lifting, and little rubber feet to keep the wood up off the wet counter. Finished with plain old mineral oil for ultimate food safety.

Octagonal Cheese Board

Octagonal Cheese Board, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

This cutting board is billed as a cheese board here, if only because that’s how it was requested, and because it’s a good compact size for that, about 8″x12″. It’s an inch-and-a-quarter thick, so the finger recesses leave ample room for even my giant fingers to slip underneath and lift it easily.

The wood species (from the outside edges) are maple, purpleheart, cherry, and walnut. For food-safe reasons, it’s finished with mineral oil, just the kind from the drugstore.

This one is spoken for but there’s another exactly like it, except it’s 14″ long, that is available. As always, just holler.

(Click to view large on Flickr)

Octo Pieces

We have kind of an "Octo" theme going in our house. There is a small octagonal stained glass window above the front door, I built some large octagonal planters a while back, and one of our gardens is octagonally bordered, so here’s a couple more on that theme.

Octo Cheese Board, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

The octo cheese board matches the larger laminated breadboard I did recently, and is actually left over from the laminated top for a matching bread box that is in progress.

Octo Planter, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

The small octo planter, really an octo flower pot, was to use up some red cedar from the Muskoka Chairs… and still a few pieces left, so I may do one or two more of these…

Big Stripey Boards

This is a new (to me) design for a cutting board, and I REALLY like how it turned out… it’s about an inch and an eighth thick, or 9/8 as we drummers like to say, and made of four species of wood… it has little rubber feet as it’s intended to sit out on the counter, and the feet help keep its bottom dry… there’s also a pair of recessed finger grooves to make it easier to grab hold of… and the edges are all chamfered…

Big Stripey Boards, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

I made two boards from the same lamination: I basically made a two-foot cutting board and then cut it in half before adding the final details… the design is based on an article on Fine Woodworking’s website (although the two-boards-at-once part was my idea)…

Big Stripey Boards, originally uploaded by rgdaniel.

One of these is going in our kitchen as soon as I finish typing this… the other is looking for a home, so don’t be shy… B-)