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Simple glue-up question

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Forum topic by SuperCubber posted 12-23-2015 02:12 AM 905 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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SuperCubber

997 posts in 2064 days


12-23-2015 02:12 AM

Topic tags/keywords: panel glue-up

Hey guys,

I think this will be a simple answer, but I can’t decide which route to take.

I’m about to glue up a panel that will be roughly 24” wide. I am trying to decide the best method to keep this panel flat over time. Aesthetics don’t matter for what it will be used for, but it needs to stay flat.

I can either edge join 5 boards which are each about 5” wide, or I can rip them to a narrow width, such as 1” and join them, like an edge-grain cutting board (obviously more work).

The 4/4 lumber has been acclimating to my shop for several months.

What do you guys think gives me the best chance of keeping it flat?

Thanks,

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine


12 replies so far

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jbay

1724 posts in 679 days


#1 posted 12-23-2015 02:24 AM

What kind of wood? Approx. 2” rips would be my Guess

-- If anyone would like to see my Portfolio, PM me and I would be glad to send you the link.

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jerryminer

751 posts in 1221 days


#2 posted 12-23-2015 04:42 AM

Simple answer? Hmmmm…

Quarter-sawn lumber is the most stable , everything else being equal. Splitting a 5” board into 5 pieces and then gluing them back together in the same orientation won’t accomplish anything. Ripping flat-sawn stock into strips and turning the strips to create a quarter-sawn panel would lead to greater stability. but if the edges of your 5” pieces have vertically-oriented grain already, then ripping and rolling would not provide a benefit.

Here’s as simply as I can put it: Do whatever you need to do to get as close to quarter-sawn material as you can.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

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jkinoh

92 posts in 1677 days


#3 posted 12-23-2015 12:29 PM

I wouldn’t be afraid to glue up 5” boards. Should be fine as long as they are all flat to start and edges are accurate 90deg.

-- Why buy it for $300 when you can make it for $500!!

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rwe2156

2662 posts in 1260 days


#4 posted 12-23-2015 03:44 PM

Clamp up with cauls and keep in cauls a few days.

Keep it as thick as you can as long as you can.

Keep it in a stable environment. I put in plastic bags or take in the house.

If it cups you can always go back and split it and reglue.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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SuperCubber

997 posts in 2064 days


#5 posted 12-23-2015 04:15 PM

Thanks for the replies, guys. If it cups, I am hosed, because it will be in another state. I’m more concerned about twisting than cupping.

It is plain sawn, so perhaps I’ll cut it, rotate it and glue it.

Thanks again,

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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pintodeluxe

5374 posts in 2593 days


#6 posted 12-23-2015 04:54 PM

“4/4” and “needs to stay flat” don’t go together. I have gone exclusively to 5/4 lumber for that very reason. I would agree to rip it into strips and show the quartersawn sides. It will be a lot of work at the jointer, but well worth it in the end.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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sawdustdad

264 posts in 665 days


#7 posted 12-25-2015 05:16 PM


What do you guys think gives me the best chance of keeping it flat?

Thanks,- SuperCubber

If an absolutely flat panel were critical, I’d be veneering an MDO or MDF core. If i could tolerate very minor variations to perfectly flat, I’d be using plywood, either apple ply or marine grade ply. the next most stable would be lumber core or any furniture grade veneered ply, and then, the least stable, would be solid wood.

Regardless of how you cut the wood, glue it up, etc., there are no guarantees it will stay flat.

Of course, “flat” is a relative term. As is the “risk” of it not staying that way. You’ve got to make that call.

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Half of all boards cut to a specific length will be too short.

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rwe2156

2662 posts in 1260 days


#8 posted 12-25-2015 06:00 PM


It is plain sawn, so perhaps I ll cut it, rotate it and glue it.

Thanks again,

- SuperCubber


Be careful on that rotating if the grain direction is reversed you may have a devil of a time if you plan on hand planing.

Dittos on the 5/4. I’m a much happier camper since I’ve gone to that. If you have a log milled I’ve found you have to watch the sawyers they are so used to cutting 4/4 and 8/4 they get 5/4 messed up pretty easy. Last go round I had to stand there and measure every single cut the guy just couldn’t compute it on his machine I guess.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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SuperCubber

997 posts in 2064 days


#9 posted 12-25-2015 09:31 PM


What do you guys think gives me the best chance of keeping it flat?

Thanks,- SuperCubber

If an absolutely flat panel were critical, I d be veneering an MDO or MDF core. If i could tolerate very minor variations to perfectly flat, I d be using plywood, either apple ply or marine grade ply. the next most stable would be lumber core or any furniture grade veneered ply, and then, the least stable, would be solid wood.

Regardless of how you cut the wood, glue it up, etc., there are no guarantees it will stay flat.

Of course, “flat” is a relative term. As is the “risk” of it not staying that way. You ve got to make that call.

- sawdustdad

I could totally use plywood. I was so stuck on figuring a way to use this hardwood that I totally ignored the idea of using plywood. Thanks for slapping my forehead!

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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AlaskaGuy

3408 posts in 2089 days


#10 posted 12-26-2015 02:23 AM

Yep, no worry with todays plywood.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

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SuperCubber

997 posts in 2064 days


#11 posted 12-26-2015 02:49 AM

Haha

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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bandit571

18183 posts in 2463 days


#12 posted 12-26-2015 05:29 AM

Maybe add a “Breadboard” edge to the ends? Tends to keep the panels I make flat.

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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