All Replies on what to do with ipe

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View sausageking1's profile

what to do with ipe

by sausageking1
posted 05-07-2014 11:31 AM

20 replies so far

View TravisH's profile


630 posts in 2140 days

#1 posted 05-07-2014 11:38 AM

If you aren’t going to use it all, could look at boxing up shorts in a USPS box and selling it off.

View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

597 posts in 3523 days

#2 posted 05-07-2014 12:29 PM

The 6 6X32 pieces could make a top for an outdoor table. The top would be 36X32 if you use them all. That might work for a low(ish) outdoor coffee table. For a higher side table you might want to scale the size back some.

-- I'm selfless because it feels so good!

View EastLake's profile


46 posts in 1743 days

#3 posted 05-07-2014 01:26 PM

Ipe is great for outdoor furniture, but all screw construction. If you have enough, a couple of patio end tables with a reclaimed rustic top? Sounds like you got enough for at least 1 foot stool to go with an adirondack chair.

-- Mark, Western New York, East Lake Woodcraft

View Buckethead's profile


3194 posts in 2074 days

#4 posted 05-07-2014 01:47 PM

Yes on screw construction. Countersink them then add dowels.

Does the Ipe have a groove in the edge? If so, you can use blind fasteners.

If not, you can make a groove in the edge with a biscuit jointer. They aren’t cheap, and you probably couldn’t get just a handful… Except … Wait for it… It should be somewhat obvious that I have some. PM me and I can send em to you. You pay shipping.

All that said, using plugs is legit, and it looks just like a dowel in the finish. It actually is a nice accent. Just lay them out on even intervals and in a straight line across the entire surface. I go with went one inch in from the edge on my most recent project (in locations where two scres/plugs per framing member were needed).

I have some scrap, and intend to make a couple moulding planes with it. Perhaps a bench plane, for the experience.

A couple other ideas:

Ipe is noted for movement, but it sounds like your longest piece is only 36 inches. Not a huge concern here.

It really is beautiful wood. Don’t breathe the dust.

-- Support woodworking hand models. Buy me a sawstop.

View Mark Kornell's profile

Mark Kornell

1169 posts in 2736 days

#5 posted 05-07-2014 02:27 PM

Just for kicks, try burning a piece…

-- Mark Kornell, Kornell Wood Design

View Woodknack's profile


12431 posts in 2585 days

#6 posted 05-07-2014 03:13 PM

Make a mallet

Click for details

-- Rick M,

View JAAune's profile


1853 posts in 2522 days

#7 posted 05-07-2014 06:37 PM

When I first saw the title of this topic I thought it read, “What to do with pie”.

Looks like everyone else already gave good answers regarding the real question but if anyone is uncertain about appropriate uses for pie, just send the pastries along to me and I’ll take care of the problem.

-- See my work at and

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1533 posts in 2567 days

#8 posted 05-07-2014 06:52 PM

You could build a really tiny deck.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

View sausageking1's profile


46 posts in 1693 days

#9 posted 05-07-2014 09:41 PM

Great feedback guys….I gather from the response that gluing is out of the question? I like the mallet idea…as for the tiny deck idea…cool….but I’d have to keep it a secret. ....wouldn’t want everyone to know I have a tiny deck! (However…I heard that if you trim the bushes around your deck it looks bigger. ...)

-- "The difficult I can do right away. .....the impossible will take a little longer! "

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2895 days

#10 posted 05-07-2014 10:00 PM

I have made several boxes from Ipe and glued them up with Titebond II with no subsequent problems. Used both splined miters and box joints. As far as finishing, it is open grained (like oak) but I filled the grain with Timbermate and it finished beautifully!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View JAAune's profile


1853 posts in 2522 days

#11 posted 05-07-2014 10:06 PM

Some people report problems gluing ipe, some don’t. One possible issue could be that the name “ipe” is used for several species of wood and isn’t actually a species of its own. This could be why glue works for some people then fails for another.

-- See my work at and

View Woodknack's profile


12431 posts in 2585 days

#12 posted 05-08-2014 02:14 AM

gluing is out of the question?

I certainly didn’t screw that mallet together ;)

-- Rick M,

View Buckethead's profile


3194 posts in 2074 days

#13 posted 05-08-2014 02:54 AM

I’ve heard mixed reports on gluing. Those who claim success generally add that they had used acetone or other solvent to clean the Ipe prior to gluing.

I have seen it glued in photos, and have recently glued some in the wild, to find out for myself. Time will tell. (I did use the acetone wipe down method, and the foaming gorilla glue. That stuff is messy. I have heard Titebond III works well if the surface is cleaned with solvent)

All hearsay. My experiment is just a couple weeks old. A year is what I’ve heard is the failure point for glues on Ipe.

-- Support woodworking hand models. Buy me a sawstop.

View mantwi's profile


312 posts in 2102 days

#14 posted 05-08-2014 03:54 AM

It glues up fine if you use a solvent to remove the oil the wood produces from the surfaces. It is hard and so heavy it sinks like a stone if dropped in water. Ipe is pretty stable once it’s fully dried, shrinkage of boards that haven’t been properly acclimated is the only issue. It’s so dense it doesn’t absorb moisture from the air like many woods so seasonal movement isn’t a problem. It finishes well but you need to use a good sealer to lock in the oils that will cause most finishes to bubble and peel. It’s a difficult wood to work with but once a project is completed it’s as durable as concrete. Have fun and have some extra blades on hand, you’ll need them.

View EPJartisan's profile


1122 posts in 3331 days

#15 posted 05-08-2014 01:31 PM

I use Ipe for my table saw sleds and fence, all finished with coat of wipe on poly… once dry.. very stable and reliable .. as long as the environment is stable and reliable. Outdoors is different story.

-- " 'Truth' is like a beautiful flower, unique to each plant and to the season it blossoms ... 'Fact' is the root and leaf, allowing the plant grow and bloom again."

View abie's profile


878 posts in 3976 days

#16 posted 05-08-2014 02:15 PM

Don’t make a mallet unles you want it to slowly come apart like mine.
I used epoxy and dovetailed it to maple.


still after a year it is coming apart on the seams.

-- Bruce. a mind is like a book it is only useful when open.

View Woodknack's profile


12431 posts in 2585 days

#17 posted 05-08-2014 03:37 PM

Well I hope mine doesn’t come apart.

-- Rick M,

View Dan P's profile

Dan P

723 posts in 2097 days

#18 posted 05-08-2014 03:42 PM

System 3 G-2 epoxy is designed for oily wood such as Ipe. Bow makers etc use it.

-- Daniel P

View Ingjr's profile


144 posts in 3222 days

#19 posted 05-08-2014 08:28 PM

I’ve used and glued a number of different projects with Ipe. Never had a glue failure and never wiped any of the pieces with acetone or similar either. Titebond II and TB III.

-- The older I get the faster I was.

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3791 days

#20 posted 05-08-2014 08:48 PM

I don’t have any idea what IPE is.However I was given aload of hardwood cutt offs of decking.It was quite unusual stuff,that is from the decking they normally sell,It came in lengths of about thirty six inches long,by about four inches wide, by one and a half thick all aproximately.
I ran it all through the thicknesser and ended up with some really sturdy nice wooden boards .
I eventually found an old church bookcase in an antique book of furniture .
It is an open type with trough mortices which are pinned with wedges which are also wood (like a knock down design).
It has pointed sides like a church spire at the both sides it turned out great and was quickly snapped up by my eldest son.I hope this has given you some inspiration or helped in some small way, have fun and make something nice. Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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