Born Again Southern Pine Projects

Viewer Project - By Johnny from Plano, TX
Added on February 1, 2010

Johnny submitted a couple of great projects made from recycled timber! I envy folks who live in areas that have the option to recycle. Its environmentally friendly, its cheap, and the wood itself brings a sense of age and maturity that can’t be achieved with stain or dye. And for anyone who isn’t familiar with Southern Pine, its worth looking into. This isn’t the same knotty pine shelf stock you see at the big box stores. Its incredibly strong and durable for a softwood and it happens to be relatively cheap. A great material for workbenches too. Just ask The Schwarz. If you want more information on Southern Pine, check this out. And without further delay, let’s hear Johnny’s story:

I have a different twist on woodworking. Instead of going to the lumber yard, about 80% of my projects are made from recycled wood. I live in Plano Texas and I drive around on country roads looking for old vacant houses that where built in the early 1900’s. Once I find one, I start knocking on doors until I find out who owns the land and the home to get their permission to take some wood. Most of the wood is old growth southern pine. It’s a lot of work cleaning up the boards because in the early days, they used small tacks to hang the cheesecloth wallpaper, but it adds that distressed look that is pretty cool.

The bed and end tables were made about 10 years ago. The dresser/entertainment/bookshelf I just now completed to match the other bedroom furniture. The cool thing about this wood is the tight grain pattern and patina (because of the large amount of rosin) for pine. You just can’t find pine like this today.

Now here is the interesting thing about the piece I just completed. I designed it so that the bookshelves would be on each side of the large piece, as seen in the photo. When I put it in the room, my wife said, “it looks great but I want the center piece angled in the corner and put the two bookshelves together”. I told her that is not the way I designed it and she said, “I know, but that is the way I like it”. Now…I did what any successfully married man of 23 years would do—I stood up tall, bowed out my chest, folded my arms and said, “Yes Dear!” I hope you enjoy!


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