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About Russell

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  • Woodworking Interests
    cabinetry and furniture .... design and construction

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  1. it was a good deal of work making it look (authentically) aged / brand new red oak is orange looking and finding any other hardwood in those timber lengths is difficult & would have added a lot to the price
  2. Our client had a very large family, entertained guests often and had just built a substantial sized home for himself… so he wanted a custom made dining table that was 16 feet long by 48” wide. He wanted it made from oak and be well aged in appearance. I had built a number of large trestle tables before but nothing of this size. I had to calculate the table top’s weight to see how difficult it would be to manipulate in our shop. At 2” thick it was already approaching 900 lbs which would stop my son & I from even turning the table top over (safely). So… I designed it such that the outside edge boards and the bread board ends would be over 2” thick and the great majority of it’s center area would be only 1.25” thick. This would make the top alone weigh aprox. 600 lbs, which made it do-able, if not easy to handle. I found a company in Maine that specialized in creating very large table pedestals. I only wanted to use two (not three) pedestals in case his floor was not perfectly flat (and it looked better that way). Once I had the outside edge machined to 2.25” thick and the inside to 1.25”, we aligned them all and dry clamped to see what we had. The bread board ends are boards that cap each end of the long table top. They run 90 degrees to all the other boards, hide the end grain there and help keep the surface flat. They are attached by means of a tongue (left protruding from the long boards) and a groove cut into the bread board in which the tongue will insert….. and they are kept in place by dowel pins. The two holes at the end of each tongue are elongated so that all the long, center boards can expand and contract along their width (from changes in humidity) without being held ridged by the dowel pins. You’ll notice that I made the ‘tongue and groove’ hidden by stopping it short of both ends by an inch or so. We fastened the pedestals to the table’s bottom with a bolt that is half wood thread (place in the table top’s bottom) and half machine thread (for wings nuts and washers) to go through an enlarged hole in the pedestals support spreader. We found the best positions for the legs by placing the top on the pedestals (somewhere between a quarter and a third of the way in from each end) until the top was dead straight (no sag). Now we were ready for the finishing process. They had selected an aged look from samples that we made. The table top and legs were gouged, filed and torched …before they were stained and top coated. It was very hard to get a picture of the finished table in their home that showed the entire table AND what the final color looked like… so I have two shots here. Russell Hudson / Hudson Cabinetmaking, Inc.
  3. They wanted two, custom panel entry doors with matching storm doors for their country home. He had taken photos of a very old Dutch (2-part) door that had an interesting panel layout. We looked at it together and amended the panel sizes a bit for a single piece door and I began planning. Their house could see three feet of snow in winter and reach the high 90s in summer, so I needed a species of wood that was strong, would remain stable through the seasons and looked great. I chose an African mahogany known as Sepele. Below you can see the two inch thick, rough sawn planks from the mill and what they looked like after I planed the boards and exposed the faces. We had to machine all the parts perfectly square and to the exact sizes so when assembled, all the joints would meet perfectly flush and the doors would be dead flat (‘on plane’). Here we are doing a dry fit (without glue) to see if it will come together as planned. We ended up creating three hundred and thirty-six pieces of this square molding to hold all the panels in place. The door’s top half was fitted with tempered glass and the bottom, with wood panels. Both storm doors and the main doors were mounted with very good hardware. They wanted brass box door latches and completely hidden scissor hinges that were made in Germany. All of these had to be deeply mortised into all the door’s edges. We had to do the same for the corresponding places on the jambs (door surrounds). We constructed them of thick Sepele and made saddles (the floor pieces), as well. This is referred to as ‘pre-hung’ doors. Although the painter’s tape is on the glass (they are applying the finish themselves) AND it was snowing outside, I managed to get this photo from the interior. In a few years the patina will look even better. I know they are very happy. russell hudson /
  4. Our client had expensive cushions custom made for the two love seats they had on their patio. The seats were made inexpensively in Central America and after some time, they began to fall apart. She asked me if we could make two new seats of similar style and size (so the cushions would fit). Here’s a pic of one of her old ones with the cushions. After doing some research, I decided to make them from African mahogany (Sepele) and I machined the size of all the components a bit heavier (thicker) than the existing ones. The Festool domino joiner and Titebond III exterior wood glue would create a joint that would hold up well. We had to do our glue-up in sections as there were too many joints to make before the glue’s set up time (15mins) so we first glued both of the sides (front leg, back leg, skirt and arm) …and did the same with the seats back …and clamped overnight. Next we brought the ends together with the back rest and two long skirt sections (front & back) and clamped again. we attached ribs between the front to back skirts and screwed the seating slats to the ribs (from below) using deck screws (so they could be replaced if need be). Then we sanded a final time and soaked both seats in Watco Teak oil and applied a second coat the next day. A yearly re-application of the teak oil will keep them as protected as is possible without having to sand off the entire old finish before refinishing (as would be the case with a marine varnish or other ‘surface coat’ finish). Now they can do their own maintenance (at each season’s end) before covering them for the winter. Russell Hudson /
  5. thx, PK / me 2 / I like large, old hand made tiles in terra cotta..... kind of look! / But hey...... they paid what I asked for..... I'm good. was Ben Moore / we paint much of it before parts are assembled / easier to paint side walls, etc. when they are horizontal, on a bench / I don't spray anymore / have a finisher for high end staining, spraying, etc.
  6. A client wanted us to build the best kitchen island with seating we could create …to place in the center of their existing kitchen. Their cabinets were a medium brown stain with over-lay doors… nice but ‘nothing special’. In this case we weren’t looking to match the other cabs but to have an island made to stand out by contrast. We decided we’d paint this new island a very dark brown (almost black). If it was to be somewhat bolder than the other cabinets, I needed to make them with a heavy face frame (3” wide stiles) that surrounded the doors and door fronts and to mount them inside the openings (known as ‘inset’) instead of the doors over-lapping like the rest of the kitchen. Additionally, we went with deeply paneled side walls and a strong detail molding for panels and the base molding’s cap. This would give the piece more weight and substance. Make it older and richer looking. After a a few sketches about the layout, here is my final rendering of the island’s floor plan with a elevation view of it’s face. Here are also some choices in 6” diameter legs that I showed them and four shots of how it turned out….. Russell Hudson / Hudson Cabinetmaking, Inc.
  7. yeah, my wife began that doing that a month ago / I throw them on a chair to get in bed each night & the damn things are there again the next night / no one uses them / no one can see them / wtf?
  8. I'll use it for crown molding and for some moldings that won't be subject to hard contact (not on doors, counter edges or any outside corner) and I won't use it for structural integrity anywhere / they have no young ones anymore
  9. a high density MDF / since it was to be painted (by us) / easier to mill
  10. If you look closely, you'll notice that the seat cushion is divided exactly where the hinged, wood-top section exists ... but I don't live there so I can't help you with your bet
  11. I didn't / that's a whole other discipline
  12. I love two-toning a piece that way / maybe the seat top as well / I have a built-in bureau in our bedroom whose counter is stained & the rest painted
  13. I have built seating beneath windows, for kitchen niches, mudrooms, bedrooms, etc. Most would like a storage bench seat with access through the front (doors or drawers). My client wanted one beneath a window in a room that was closest to the pool in their backyard. Towels, etc. would be stored there. A lifting lid (hinged seat top) was best for this kind of storage. Here was the initial rendering based on doors & drawers. Here it’s beginning to come together on a bench in the shop. After painting, I placed the base molding on the bench to get a sense of what I’d constructed. I decided to have a large center section of the seat top to lift up, leaving short sections left and right permanently attached to help keep the box rigid. You'll also notice she wanted the arm rest to be more simple. After installation… There is a billiards table in this room now so this seating is getting plenty of use... russell hudson11/19/17
  14. made this for a client / not mine to clean / but thx for the heads up
  15. client found the company before she found me / once I figured what she needed, we ordered / some place in California / worst customer service ever but great doors