End grain gluing - I thought this was a bad idea?

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Forum topic by becikeja posted 12-05-2015 01:55 PM 862 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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928 posts in 2962 days

12-05-2015 01:55 PM

I have decided to make a couple of cutting boards as Christmas presents. To get started I searched lumberjocks and went to You Tube. I found a good blog and a good video on how to make a Drunken cutting board. Ok this is what I want to attempt.

Now I’m scratching my head, my experience tells me, gluing end grain to end grain is a weak joint and never a good idea. Yet for a Drunken cutting board it appears the entire integrity of the board is dependent on end grain to end grain gluing after the second series of cuts.

What am I missing? Is there a special process?

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

4 replies so far

View SirIrb's profile


1239 posts in 1380 days

#1 posted 12-05-2015 03:17 PM

I too have always been under that impression. But I have no evidence. Do this. Edge to edge, glue, hang weight from it. Edge to end, glue hang weight. End to end, glue, hang weight. Thinking about it I bet end to end is the weakest because of glue absorbed into the wood via end grain (gut here, that’s all) is lower or less penetration than edge. I’m interested. See if you can hang 25lbs from each. Give them all the same surface area of adhesion. 3 or 4 sqin.

What keeps coming to mind is faceframes. We always glue end to edge, the glue is used to accompany other fasteners like dowels or pocket screws. Nonetheless the glue held here well. I know I have backed pocket screws out and tried to break the joint. Not easy.

-- Don't blame me, I voted for no one.

View jmartel's profile


8158 posts in 2299 days

#2 posted 12-05-2015 03:45 PM

End grain to end grain joints are the weakest. They are also surprisingly strong. However, that being said, the stresses seen by a cutting board are minimal at best. You simply don’t need a lot of strength. That’s the biggest reason there aren’t a lot of problems. There’s nothing to cause problems.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5072 posts in 4110 days

#3 posted 12-05-2015 03:50 PM

Look at the FastCap video showing their use of the P2-10 CA glue. The rubberized version might just be what ya want.


View Rob's profile


316 posts in 3136 days

#4 posted 12-05-2015 04:19 PM

I haven’t made that board specifically but I have made other boards where there is end grain to end grain. I always put a spline at least 1/2” wide and 1/8” thick in the edge all the way around and then add a 1/4” boarder all the way around to hide the spline and add more strength. It helps to keep everything together. It also decorates the board more. I haven’t had one break yet. Not to say one won’t, but every little bit of extra holding power helps!

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