Presses to flatten cutting boards and table tops

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Project by RunningDan posted 07-22-2010 02:38 PM 4779 views 53 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I had a bunch of hard maple left over from my last project, so I decided to turn out a bunch of cutting boards. One problem I faced, though, was that when I glued up my table tops and cutting boards they didn’t stay flat with the clamping pressure.

These are just some pictures of some presses I made out of MDF to hold the table tops and cutting boards flat while I clamp them up. The small one is 18”x18”, the large one is 30”x30”. I wrapped the edges in packing tape so the glue wouldn’t stick. So far they work pretty well, and I never again intend on gluing up a table top without some sort of pressure to keep it flat.

12 comments so far

View Ampeater's profile


414 posts in 2834 days

#1 posted 07-22-2010 03:47 PM

That is a very good idea. I am going to have to make some for my boards.

-- "A goal without a plan is a wish."

View levan's profile


457 posts in 2066 days

#2 posted 07-22-2010 03:51 PM

Good idea’s . Those should make life a whole lot simpler.

-- "If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right". Henry Ford

View tyskkvinna's profile


1310 posts in 2073 days

#3 posted 07-22-2010 03:58 PM

Very clever! Makes a lot of sense, too.

-- Lis - Michigan - -

View patron's profile


13421 posts in 2428 days

#4 posted 07-22-2010 03:58 PM

where there is a will

there is your way .

which i shall have to make ,
thanks ,

i needed this !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View RobS's profile


1334 posts in 3393 days

#5 posted 07-22-2010 04:01 PM


-- Rob (A) Waxahachie,TX

View mike5753's profile


23 posts in 1968 days

#6 posted 07-22-2010 06:53 PM

Great adea. I have fought that problem for awhile. Thanks for sharing your solution.

-- Mike, Illinois,

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 2395 days

#7 posted 07-22-2010 08:19 PM

Good idea…especially with the mdf since it is likely to stay flat also. You could also use some uhmw strips on the parts that press against the glue. I have a uhmw worktablwe top and absolutely nothing sticks to it.

View Jason's profile


658 posts in 2595 days

#8 posted 07-22-2010 09:04 PM

Great idea!

-- Jason - Colorado Springs

View SgtSnafu's profile


960 posts in 2358 days

#9 posted 07-23-2010 03:03 PM

I really like the idea – seems like it would be easier to handle than traditional methods..

Thanks for sharing

-- Scotty - aka... SgtSnafu - Randleman NC

View mike5753's profile


23 posts in 1968 days

#10 posted 07-28-2010 04:25 AM

Made a press and used it today. Great results. Thanks again

-- Mike, Illinois,

View Rick's profile


358 posts in 2297 days

#11 posted 07-30-2010 05:46 PM

I’m gonna make some of these this weekend

View Michael's profile


196 posts in 2084 days

#12 posted 07-17-2013 12:47 PM

I agree with the comment above to use uhmw, however if you want a cheap solution go buy some wax paper and put that between your clamp surface and stock.

-- "A woodworking project is either a masterpiece or a POS" Dr. Lang

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