Entwined by Anthony Martin of Red Tail Forge Works and Kelly Maxwell Designs.
This functional live edge table design was inspired by the symbiotic relationships in nature and life cycles.
An artistic live edge table design showcases spalted maple burl and aspen trees forged from steel. Spalting coloration is caused by fungi primarily found in dead trees, but can also occur in stressed living trees. If the fungi are left unchecked, it will turn the wood into the soil. Although, woodworkers desire unique colocations even with imperfections.
Aspen trees, which provide important habitat for wildlife, are one of the first plants to reestablish after a fire as new saplings sprout from underground root systems.
The wood components come from an 8’x 48″ wood slab. Dowels and glue connect the center slab to the tabletop and base. The steel aspen trees serve as structural supports. A non-ambering hard wax finishes the wood surfaces.
The steel aspen tree trunk is first cold hammered, then forge-heated to over 1500o and hammered. Similarly, branches are shaped and added to the tree. Holes are burnt into the trunk and filed from the inside out for authenticity.
Leaves are cut, tumble-cleaned, and scored with a grinder, and a 1/16” to 3/16” diameter stem is welded to each leaf. Stems and leaves are forge-heated at > 1500o. Welds are smashed flat, reheated, and moved to the anvil, where veins are chiseled and leaves are shaped. Cooled to ~ 1000o, each leaf is brushed with a solid brass wire brush which adheres to the hot steel. The finished piece is quenched in water, instantly dropping the leaves to an ambient temperature.