Start the Journey
Explore the Process of Creating a Solid Wood Slice Dining Table, a live Edge Coffee Table, an Outdoor Table, and more.
Thank you for your interest in ordering a custom made live edge hardwood table from The Old Silverado Trail. These tables are hand made by Eugene Justus from California claro walnut and other beautiful hardwoods. They are designed for those who appreciate custom made quality. Our goal is to provide you with beautiful tables, from a solid wood slice dining table to a table for your office, and other furnishings that enrich your business or living environment.
The first, very important step, is a meeting with you to discuss your decor, preferences, vision and furnishing requirements. Eugene will meet with you to discuss the types of wood, finishes and other details to ensure the finished product is what you desire. He will modify the initial design, if needed before the contract is provided.
You are encouraged to be as involved in the process as you would like, including joining Eugene to visit the special lumber yard that offers the finest quality of wood that you prefer, so that you can choose the individual wood slab. You are also encouraged to visit the woodworking studio to monitor the progress of your project as it evolves. It typically takes from 120 to 150 hours of hand finishing to complete a table.
Brazilian Steer Hides
Eugene offers his customers the option to have a free Brazilian steer hide with the purchase of a custom table. Hides come in brown and white and also black and white color combinations.
Large, premium grade Brazilian Steer Hides such as these, are also available for you to purchase, independent of any table, for $650.00 each, which includes shipping.
American Black Cherry has been considered a luxury wood for furniture in the U.S. since Colonial times over 200 years ago. The finest cherry comes from Pennsylvania, but it is also found in the Midwest. Cherry was the first wood Eugene used to make furniture with his Grandfather on his family’s farm in Michigan, over 50 years ago. It has been one of his favorite woods used in many projects since then.
Cherry is a hardwood and each table has unique color variations and patterns caused by small knots/ In many woods such knots can cause those areas to become rough; however, cherry wood is prized for showcasing the beauty of those natural imperfections while maintaining a smooth, tight grain. Many homeowners love the wood’s versatility and color.
Cherry is noted for the richness of it’s color which mellows, darkens and improves with age. The white, cream, mahogany and reddish brown colors become richer and deeper with the passage of time. It is one of the most revered woods for woodworkers because it is relatively easy to work with and sands to a very smooth finish. When wipe on oil finishes are used on cherry they produce a striking rich color. Builders and interior designers often choose it because it is so versatile and works well with both contemporary and traditional decors. Cherry wood is readily available. So, if cherry is your choice for a table, bed backboard or other furnishings, please contact Eugene to discuss your plans at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
American Black Walnut is one of America’s most treasured natural resources, not only for the rich flavorable nuts it produces, but also for it’s prized, beautiful, dark wood. The trees range in height from 70 feet to over 100 feet.
Many people say it is one of he finest woods in the world. It has been used for centuries for beautiful furniture, as well as to build houses, barns and fences.
Eugene Justus painfully tells the story of his father’s decision to cut down 5 very large black walnut trees on his family farm in Michigan when he was a teenager. He then helped to split the logs into rails (like the story of Abraham Lincoln) to make fence posts. Walnut was used because it is resistant to infestation, water damage, and mold. ” At that time walnut was so plentiful that we didn’t appreciate the monetary value of the wood. So we wound up with a small fortune of walnut fence posts standing in a straight line for over 1/2 mile.” In 2002, during his last visit to the farm, the fence was still standing.
Walnut is easy to work with, yet durable, and the wood finishes beautifully. It shrinks and swells less than nearly any other wood, which makes it valuable for cabinet makers and other woodworkers. It has a very fine and straight grain, with light and dark variations and few knots. It is easy to stain and finish with fine oil, lacquer and wax finishes. For many people the most alluring feature of American black walnut is its appearance. It has many variations between light and dark although the darker color is the most popular. The color often darkens over time, like cherry wood, into a warm patina.
The tight grain of walnut gives it a uniform look and it is increasingly being chosen by builders and interior designers for flooring as well as for furniture. American black walnut is a luxurious hardwood. Custom made live edge slab tables made from this wood will enrich your living or business environment.
Please feel free contact Eugene Justus to discuss using beautiful American black walnut for your next table or other project at (707) 287-6220.
California Claro Walnut can have some of the most spectacular figuring of any member of the walnut family. For many woodworkers it is the connoisseur’s walnut and it is easy to see why. It provides a medley of subtle intermixed colors – browns, reds, black, purple and cream: When it exhibits curly figuring is is a beautiful and exciting as any wood there is, with dramatic and engaging swirls and colors.
Over the years woodworkers have come to love the beauty, stability and machine-ability of California Claro Walnut. It is the finest temperate zone hardwood grown in the U.S. and ranks with Brazilian Rosewood, Bubinga, Sapele and a few others as truly world class woodworking material.
It is as pleasant to work with as it is to look at. Its physical properties are similar to black walnut which has been used for centuries by the best furniture makers. The extraordinary mix of colors in Claro Walnut come alive with an excellent finish. The best oil and wax finishes, applied in numerous thin coats, each of which is then hand sanded, make the finished tables dramatically beautiful.
This is Eugene’s favorite wood to make live edge tables from – he has commented that he is always amazed to see the beauty of the wood develop and evolve from the unfinished slab to the finished table. Contact Eugene today to find your favorite wood at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
For those who prefer a light colored wood, Big Leaf maple is an ideal choice. It grows throughout the Pacific Northwest and is known as the pinnacle of the maple family. It is most famous for its wide range of stunning figuring. Woodworkers who appreciate the beauty of figured wood are familiar with Big Leaf maple’s birdseye, curley and burl patterns. However a spectacular quilt figuring is also produced by this majestic species. That special quilting is rare and highly valued by woodworkers to make extraordinary furnishings for their clients. Quilted maple deserves special mention. The quilting consists of rectangular or oblong bulges that appear to be three dimensional with a rich surface effect
Even without the figuring, the plain sawn lumber and slabs have unique and interesting properties. The sapwood color ranges from a creamy white to a light golden glow. It is straight grained and has a fine even texture. Its uniform appearance can also be finished to appear similar to other species, including cherry, which makes it a versatile and alternative for some projects such as large built-in shelving.
Eugene has commented that is a joy to work with Big Leaf maple. This wood makes beautiful live edge dining tables or counters for kitchens, The round burl slabs make extraordinarily beautiful smaller furniture, such as kitchen tables, coffee tables or side tables for living or bed rooms. To explore the possibilities of using Big Leaf maple for your next project, please feel free to contact Eugene Justus at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
Bubinga is a gorgeous African hardwood that has been famous since the 1700’s for its rich and distinctive color. It has a host of stunning figuring including curly, quilted and especially, waterfall, which makes the wood truly unique. The trees tower up to 150 feet high and can be up to 8 feet in diameter. Logs of these trees weigh over 10 tons so they have traditionally been floated out of the jungle during the rainy seasons. The wood is hard to work with and finish; however the end result is well worth all of the effort because bubinga provides exceptionally beautiful live edge tables.
Please note: Bubinga slabs for live edge tables or other furnishings are becoming increasingly rare. Effective January 2, 2017, the international wood regulatory body, SITES II, placed bubinga on the endangered species list. That means bubinga purchased before that date can continue to be used, but new purchases after that date are now banned.
Eugene Justus still has access to a supply of beautiful large slabs located in the U.S. However, they are becoming increasingly rare and expensive. He encourages anyone who would like to own such a furniture masterpiece to act as soon as possible. There is now a limited time to have a bubinga table custom made for your home or business. Many homeowners, builders and interior designers are not aware of this ban and Eugene would be pleased to arrange a purchase of a slab for you for a future project if you wish. You would be rewarded for that investment.
Please feel free to contact Eugene Justus to discuss this opportunity at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
Hawaii is legendary for its beauty, and Koa wood is perhaps its most celebrated natural treasure. Koa exists nowhere else in the world. Throughout Hawaiian history, Koa has been highly revered as the wood of monarchs. It was used by the warriors of King Kamehameha, the Great, to create canoes and weapons. Today Koa is used for surfboards, large bowls for serving food, and a wide range of furniture. Some of the finest stringed instruments, like guitars and ukulele, are made by master craftsmen with Koa wood.
Today Koa is grown on all of the islands, but the finest Koa is grown on the big island of Hawaii at higher altitudes in the moist rich soil there. It is known for its rich deep colors. Koa has never been on an endangered species list and grows abundantly private and public lands through Hawaii.
There are many grades of Koa, the finest and most expensive is Curly Koa. The curl is the rippling wavy pattern that runs perpendicular to the natural grain of the wood. Less than 10% of all Koa is Curly and it is the most sought after and most expensive. It sells for many times as much as Select Koa, which does not have the beautiful fluttering patterns.
Many people who have traveled to Hawaii have stayed in high-end resorts including the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, the Four Seasons and Ritz Carlton Maui which all showcase beautiful furnishings made of Koa. Eugene Justus has had the pleasure of visiting those hotels on vacation and business trips. His favorite example of the artistry of using Koa wood is the very large, 100 year old war canoe hanging from the ceiling of the Kauai Marriott. That is a truly impressive example of the finest woodworking art, especially for anyone who loves beautiful craftsmanship.
Now, homeowners and businesses on the mainland can enjoy the same beautiful live edge Koa tables and other furnishings custom made for them in Napa, California. Please feel free to contact Eugene Justus to discuss your desire to have a special piece of Hawaiian Koa furniture hand made especially for you; at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
Sapele, pronounced (Sah-PELL-ey), is an outstanding species and is the cream of the African mahogany market. Sapele is a very large tree, often exceeding 150 feet in height, with a trunk that exceeds 6 feet. It has few branches below 80 feet, which results in a dense, straight and stable grain thatis ideal for live edge tables, kitchen counter tops and other furnishings. When it is quarter sawn, the interlocking grain pattern forms beautiful ribbon striping that is stunning in appearance.
The heartwood ranges from a golden color to a dark reddish brown . The color darkens with age, like cherry wood. Sapele is also known for a wide variety of other graining patters, such as quilted, wavy and fiddleback. It has a fine uniform grain. It is plentiful and strictly regulated, which insures that the trees are responsibly harvested and the continued available of the wood. The popularity of Sapele will continue to grow.
It is a pleasure to work with using hand tools or power tools and can be finished in a variety of ways to produce a range of colors. A clear sealer and lacquer finish will produce a light wood, similar to cherry. A dye, sealer, stain and lacquer finish results in a medium color, the classic mahogany appearance, and finally, a Danish oil, sealer and lacquer finish will produce a darker and stunning appearance.
As a result of the range of finishes and colors Sapale is often considered the ideal choice by homeowners, builders and interior designers for their projects. Please feel free to contact Eugene Justus to explore the uses of Sapele in your next project. He can be reached at (707) 287-6220 or click here.
Begin Your Design
Begin the Journey of Fine Wood Furnishings. Contact Eugene at 707-287-6220 or click below to discuss your thoughts and ideas and experience the joy of owning a fine, custom piece that will be in your family for generations.