Poplar live edge dining table

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Assuming by looking at the picture, the only board I would use is the center board.  It appears that both outside boards have major end cracks.  However just dealing with the board on the right you will need to rip off what appears to be a couple inches.  Maybe my opinion would be different if these boards where milled properly.

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I guess it all depends on how rustic of a table they are expecting. Most of us consider poplar to be a great paint grade hardwood. It might look good if stained carefully. ( practice on scraps first ! )  

I also agree with the opinion to rip out the flaw on the internal seam . 

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In play I applied a sealer to a piece of poplar. It killed all the natural green that I wanted to preserve. Today it is one of the best choices for paint as Steve says. Steve, do you remember the days when gum lumber was available? It painted better than poplar. But all the millable gum is gone.

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There is also a good bit of twist in one of the center boards. Either a router flattening jig or a planer sled( if a wide enough planer is available) will work but it will reduce thickness and then the rest of the boards would need to be planed down to match.

I wish him luck, he probably doesn't realize how big the effort may be to make those boards into a table.

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I'd rip about an inch off the inside edge of that right board and make it square, personally. It's going to be tough to joint properly if he doesn't, and- personally- I don't see keeping that part in there as adding anything good aesthetically to the piece. It's not big enough to be any sort of "river" feature, it doesn't have the same kind of character as a knot... just slice it off.

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37 minutes ago, Barron said:

 It doesn’t look bad

Eehhhhh....????  I've never seen poplar with both heart and sap wood look good to me right under any clear finish or stain.  I know it's possible, but I've never seen it. 


 To answer the op question, those boards don't look like they have even been milled yet. If he's joining them together, they need milled flat with complimentary angles on the faces meeting and the twist removed from what looks like all 3 boards to different degrees

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