Reply by jsheaney

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Posted on Wenge table top splitting

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141 posts in 4017 days

#1 posted 03-29-2011 06:59 AM

I’m confused by the breadboard suggestions. I thought that was intended to keep a panel flat while allowing for wood movement. I think the sliding dovetail should be doing that job, although it certainly isn’t right at the edge. I didn’t think of putting a straightedge on it, but I didn’t notice any cupping.

The wood is definitely cracking under the finish. The picture I posted didn’t stay full resolution, but the cracks are visible. It may just be hard to believe. The very thin white lines all over the end grain are the cracks. The pattern looks like safety glass. Only a small percentage of them reach the top, but that’s still about eight cracks in the finish. I think only one of them extends more than an inch from the edge at this point.

All of the wenge for this table came from one 8/4 plank: about 8’ x 8”. The top was something less tan half that length and resawed open for a bookmatched top. That means one end of the table was close to the end of the plank and one came from the middle. As it happens, it looks like the other end of the table does have a few tiny cracks, but none reach the top. It’s definitely nothing like this end. Maybe that is further evidence of a drying problem? I guess I’m not sure which part of the board would correspond to the problem end. Obviously, I had to lose some material off the end, but maybe I should have cut more.

I do remember the wood being quite brittle. Hard and brittle.

-- Disappointment is an empty box full of expectation.

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