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Forum topic by Kennethjg posted 11-29-2015 01:10 AM 792 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Kennethjg

41 posts in 400 days


11-29-2015 01:10 AM

Topic tags/keywords: weather wood movement bench danish oil swelling resource tip question maple walnut

Hey guys, in case you’re not familiar with it, there’s a saying about Texas weather: “if you don’t like it, wait a bit and it’ll change.”
That may not be the case in summer. It’s hot as hell every damn day. But the past few weeks, it’s been really moody. Monday, it got to right around the freezing point, and by Thursday it was 70 degrees and really humid, Friday was about the same, until it rained and rained and rained, then today it dropped down to the 40’s.
Well I just finished my work bench, and that’s my first major project to not be kept indoors (it’s in the garage), and it’s also the first thing I haven’t finished with lacquer or varnish (I used several coats of Danish oil).
With all the changes in temperature and humidity, I’ve already noticed some of the glue seams starting to stick out.
Do you guys think I have anything to worry about with it being out there? I’d hate for it to warp or swell all to hell after all the work I put into it.

-- It ain't custom unless you fucked it up.


12 replies so far

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1774 days


#1 posted 11-29-2015 01:55 AM

I lived in Texas for 2 years. That’s where I got the motivation to move to Alaska.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View mountainaxe's profile

mountainaxe

130 posts in 1970 days


#2 posted 11-29-2015 03:10 AM

You’ll definitely have movement if you leave it in an uncontrolled environment around here. The piece must be sealed if you want to avoid swelling/contraction.

-- Jeff, "The things I make may be for others, but how I make them is for me."

View Kennethjg's profile

Kennethjg

41 posts in 400 days


#3 posted 11-29-2015 03:22 AM

So would you not consider Danish oil as a sealant? If not, what should I do to seal it? Can I apply something over the top of the Danish oil?

-- It ain't custom unless you fucked it up.

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

2572 posts in 1722 days


#4 posted 11-30-2015 12:19 AM

Kenneth, sealing a piece doesn’t stop movement, it just slows it down. If the work bench was constructed appropriately, e.g. no cross grain joints, you should be fine with the Danish oil because all the parts will expand and contract together at the same rate.

-- Art

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conifur

955 posts in 617 days


#5 posted 11-30-2015 12:45 AM

Kenneth, sealing a piece doesn’t stop movement, it just slows it down. If the work bench was constructed appropriately, e.g. no cross grain joints, you should be fine with the Danish oil because all the parts will expand and contract together at the same rate.
I disagree, a good film finish on all sides really minimizes it, and usually b4 humidity gets in, the humidity drops and with a good film finish it off sets those times.
You could go fancy and A/C the garage.

-- Knowledge and experience equals Wisdom, Michael Frankowski

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1774 days


#6 posted 11-30-2015 12:56 AM



Kenneth, sealing a piece doesn t stop movement, it just slows it down. If the work bench was constructed appropriately, e.g. no cross grain joints, you should be fine with the Danish oil because all the parts will expand and contract together at the same rate.

- AandCstyle

+1 You’re absolutely right.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Kennethjg's profile

Kennethjg

41 posts in 400 days


#7 posted 11-30-2015 01:10 AM

Dang, now you’ve got me worried. It has breadboard ends. I’ve been doing woodworking on a more commercial scale (in a custom cabinet shop) for about five years, but now as I’m shifting more toward woodworking for pleasure, I’m learning a lot more about it. So I’ve only recently read about wood movement, and how it can cause problems. What’s the worst case scenario?
And for future reference, I’ve read about floating tenons for breadboard ends, but are those not supposed to be glued?

-- It ain't custom unless you fucked it up.

View mountainaxe's profile

mountainaxe

130 posts in 1970 days


#8 posted 11-30-2015 02:55 AM

Besides being porous, wood is hygroscopic; it absorbs and releases moisture. Wood will absorb and give off moisture as the atmosphere around it changes in humidity levels; the end grain absorbs water more than the surface. I agree that finish slows this moisture exchange, helping to stabilizing the wood, but it doesn’t eliminate it.

The thicker the coating of any finish, the better it limits moisture exchange. I’ve used the old traditional method as you did – Danish/tung oil [or a mixture of boiled linseed oil and gum turpentine (50/50 mix)] which will soak deep into the fibres and seal them quite well; it will still allow the wood to ‘breathe.’ So, if your bench is subject to big humidity swings, I’d suggest you apply a heavier finish and reapply once a year…more is better.

-- Jeff, "The things I make may be for others, but how I make them is for me."

View Knothead62's profile

Knothead62

2581 posts in 2426 days


#9 posted 11-30-2015 03:19 PM

Every place I have lived had that same saying. Right now it is raining in SE Tennessee; lasting through Wednesday. Puts a crimp in my outdoor plans.
Thanks to all for their input for this project.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3944 posts in 1958 days


#10 posted 11-30-2015 03:52 PM

I’m guessing that the glue seam problem is “glue creep”, you must have used a PVA glue which is very prone to creep. Like knothead said every state in the union has that saying.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1774 days


#11 posted 11-30-2015 07:01 PM

Alaska’s weather never changes it alway “in flux”.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View SignWave's profile (online now)

SignWave

320 posts in 2500 days


#12 posted 12-01-2015 03:56 PM

I’m in N. Tx and my laminated workbench lives in a non-climate controlled space. I made mine with construction lumber (Fir) and glued it with TB2. A couple of times during the first year, I noticed that the wood was higher in the glue lines and lower in between. The overall surface was still relatively flat, but with these variations, if that makes sense. It didn’t warp overall.

I hit it with a #4 smoothing plane to re-level it. It happened again a few months later, but not as much. It seems to have settled down and the uneven spots are mostly due to me abusing it. Bottom line is it’s a workbench, and you’re going to need to true it up from time to time. But a laminated top should be pretty stable overall.

FWIW, I also used danish oil on mine, but a single coat. I reapply when I true up the surface, usually.

-- Barry, http://BarrysWorkshop.com/

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