A George III Mahogany Kneehole Desk – Part Five

The top proper consists of three 3/4″ (19mm) thick pine boards glued and rubbed together, which, once dry, was tidied and squared up. I formed the mahogany edge moulding and mitred and glued it around the top’s periphery.

The crossbanding for the perimeter of the top was cut from pieces of 5/64″ (2mm) thick veneer left over from veneering the carcase.

Crossbanding the top.

The crossbanding was trimmed while the glue was still soft.

The crossbanding completed.

The top will be screwed to the carcase prior to polishing the desk and following that, the tooled hide will be glued onto the bare pine surface.

Jack Plane

About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
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10 Responses to A George III Mahogany Kneehole Desk – Part Five

  1. Ron says:

    The kneehole desk is coming along nicely. I look forward to seeing the completed construction photos and subsequent photos of the finish, polishing, and aging. Do the dimensions of your desk allow space for the dog the lie down at your feet or will he not subject himself to such signs of affection?


    • Jack Plane says:

      Yes, there’s room for at least one dog in the kneehole. Both animals are perfectly at ease with lying beneath or on top of my feet.

      When Virginia first saw the kneehole carcase she commented that it would make the perfect kennel with storage for the dogs’ food and all their paraphernalia!



  2. Jerry Olson says:

    I follow a number of Woodworking Blogs but yours is by far the most inspiring. I am a semi-retired electrical engineer with a wealth of space and woodworking tools in my 1850 3 story mill building here in New England. Because of this I am in awe of the quality and quantity of projects you produce in apparently limited space.

    Keep up the good work!


  3. joe says:

    is the cross banding “proud of the pine surface? How will the leather transition to the banding?Beautiful work as always. I always look forward to your posts.


  4. John M. says:

    With the top of this desk being made of solid wood, is there a concern about cross-grain expansion due to changing humidity in the environment?

    I may be misunderstanding the construction of this top, but it strikes me that if there is an issue it would likely show itself in the veneered banding.


    • Jack Plane says:

      The top will likely move around a bit, especially in the first few years, though I don’t anticipate any disharmony between the top and the crossbanding as they are oriented in the same direction.

      If anything, the end mouldings might ‘grow’ a little in length, but in reality, it’s highly doubtful if any change will be noticeable. The pine boards used for the top sat indoors for a few weeks before I planed them and rubbed them together.



  5. WB Tanner says:

    I’m really looking forward to tooled leather top. Will you do some blind, and some with gilt?


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