We made plans for Kathy to bring the brass porthole to my shop along with some pictures of a few table designs. Much to my surprise, the porthole weighed in at a whooping 49 lbs. We discussed some of the details that Kathy wanted in Bill’s table, including the table size and type of wood. She selected an Elm slab that I had on hand, it was the perfect size for this table. The Elm slab was recovered from a tree damaged in a recent storm. The goal was to have it done in time to surprise Bill for Christmas.Based on Kathy’s descriptions and the dimensions of the porthole, I started the sketches. Sketches offer the opportunity to compare notes and make the necessary changes simply by exchanging e-mails.Once the sketches were approved, I immediately started building the table. The legs and shelf were resawn to 7/8″ then planed and sanded to 3/4″. The Elm slab had a large bark inclusion, considering the weight of the brass porthole, I felt it best to remove the bark inclusion and glue up a solid top.The layout and cutout for the brass porthole. The inter circle will be cut all the way through the table top. The outer circle is recessed to allow the rim of the porthole to rest below the surface. This was necessary because the back of the rim was not flat. I had to remove wood in several spots so the porthole would sit flat. Brass screws secure the porthole to the tabletop.This table was finished with per-catalyzed lacquer giving it a durable and easy to maintain finish.