42“x18“x1.5″ Custom Cutting Board — Edge Grain
Originally Posted: July 6, 2021
Updated: February 25, 2023
Maple, Walnut, Cherry
It sounds like a dessert ice cream.
I love to cook, as you can see from my Instagram profile and the new Cuisine section on this website. Over the years, I have had various store-bought cutting boards, most of which have worked reasonably well.
However, they all suffered from various issues (lack of stability, durability, warping due to poor manufacturing, etc.). This year my boards were getting to a point where they needed to be replaced, and thus it was a perfect time to design and manufacture a custom board.
A few of my requirements for the new design:
- The various boards were never big enough (16x16, 16x20, 8x10, etc.) — it had to be larger, much more prominent on the kitchen island.
- I wanted to move to an edge grain style board for my primary board for durability and rock-solid stability.
- I have wanted to make a custom board for years (I am a hobbyist woodworker)
- I wanted to source Canadian woods only.
- The board had to feature a unique design both in structure and in colour; however, I wanted to use woods that were:
- not toxic
- less than or roughly 1200 on the Janka Hardness scale (my Japanese knives made from Aogami Super (Super Blue carbon) Steel clad with Stainless Steel are brittle under certain conditions on hard surfaces) — they have a Rockwell Hardness of 63:64 !
- With wood prices soaring in 2020/2021, many handmade boards can be ultra-expensive, and nothing I found on the web were the dimensions I was looking at.
Hence it was time to design and manufacture my own personalized board.
Materials and Tools
- Canadian Walnut
- Canadian Maple
- Canadian Cherry was not available, so I used a US imported Cherry
- Titebond III glue
- Sandpaper (80, 120, 150, 180, 220, 320 grit)
- Cutting board oil (Caron and Doucet Cutting Board Conditioning Oil)
- Cutting board wax (Caron and Doucet)
- Hand sanding block
- Pipe Clamps, lots of pipe clamps
- Flat workbench
- Orbital Sander
- Router Planner Sled (will post the article on how I made my custom one shortly)
- Double Flute bit
The final result
As the image below show, the wood was ultra smooth, near perfectly glued together and the final oil and wax process really brought out the grain in all of the woods.
Designing and manufacturing the board was around 8 hours of work and required several custom tools & jigs to be manufactured.
That said, the result speaks for itself, and the board is a unique piece of art as much as it is a rock-solid surface!
I have been using the board multiple times daily for nearly four months now, and it’s so solid that my knives cut dramatically better on it. It should last for years with continued maintenance — the only real issue with it is the weight and size of the physical board, as it makes it difficult to give it a good wash in the double sink.
The real question now that friends are asking:
Will you go into making boards and sell them ?
Honestly, I am considering the idea more and more.