End Grain Cutting Board Question

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Forum topic by deucefour posted 08-02-2010 02:39 AM 2629 views 1 time favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View deucefour's profile


285 posts in 3429 days

08-02-2010 02:39 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

To those of you out there that have completed some of the nice end grain cutting boards, I was wondering how you are smoothing the glued up board, thickness planer? wouldnt it chip out? or thickness sander, hand plane or hand sander?, I was just wondering what works best for you guys before I go and blow it. I have a thickness planer but no thickness sander, however I would not be beyond building one like Blake’s



10 replies so far

View DrewM's profile


176 posts in 3174 days

#1 posted 08-02-2010 02:56 AM

I just completed one and flattened it with a no.5 plane. I had some chip out issues with the edges but since they were going to be routed I wasn’t too concerned. Hand planning end grain of hard maple is not a fun job at all and I don’t have a desire to do it again. The next one I make will be small enough to fit through my thickness planer. I have some concerns about using it to flatten the board but at 1/64” cuts I have a feeling it might do ok. If I had the money a thickness sander would be the way to go with projects like this.

-- Drew, Delaware

View lew's profile


12382 posts in 3930 days

#2 posted 08-02-2010 03:01 AM

Belt Sander, Random Orbital Sander, Scraper, Hand Sanding

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3250 days

#3 posted 08-02-2010 03:04 AM

I’ve run end grain cutting boards through my planer. I take a very thin sliver off with each pass. I get a little chip out but it is not a problem since I will rout the edges.

My planer has a random snipe capability. Usually snipe is not a problem but every once in a while the snipe gremlin takes control on my planer and causes a snipe for no apparent reason. This problem has been minimal but it has been a problem on occasion.

I also wish I had a thickness sander.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View poroskywood's profile


618 posts in 3539 days

#4 posted 08-02-2010 03:04 AM

If you are going to use a planer make sure to round over the back edge with a router to avoid tear out and explosion of back edge. I use my Jet OCS 22-44 (tool gloat) sorry.

-- There's many a slip betwixt a cup and a lip.--Scott

View Ryan's profile


238 posts in 3105 days

#5 posted 08-02-2010 03:10 AM

I’ve made more than 30 end grain boards so far, planing the end grain surface is always a challenge.
I’ve tried hand plane, power plane, thickness plane, belt sander, palm sander, orbital sander.
I decided not to use thickness planer after I broke two boards and damaged blades and its holder.
And also the width of the board is limited usually 12”, which is not big enough in many cases.
Since I don’t have drum sander, the best way I’ve found so far is
power plane → belt sander(50, 80, 120)-> palm or orbital sander.
It looks like big drum sander would be the best solution but haven’t tried.

If anyone has easier way, you’re more than welcome to sharing the idea.

View blackcherry's profile


3338 posts in 3998 days

#6 posted 08-02-2010 03:26 AM

The sand flee or v drum sander tackles this job like a CHARM…BC

View joeE's profile


5 posts in 3319 days

#7 posted 08-02-2010 12:46 PM

I use a router sled with a planing bit, then minimal sanding is needed.

View deucefour's profile


285 posts in 3429 days

#8 posted 08-02-2010 06:09 PM

Thanks everyone for all your advice, I really appreciate it


View Ben Martin's profile

Ben Martin

34 posts in 3384 days

#9 posted 08-03-2010 05:35 PM

I simply added a 1/2” on the “back” side to chip out, and ran my last board through a the planer, then cut off the spare wood. After that, a couple quick passes on a panel sander had a near perfect finish. An orbital sander would definatly do the job, I’m just lazy.

View Brandon's profile


4152 posts in 3127 days

#10 posted 08-03-2010 06:05 PM

The router sled (mentioned by joeE) seems like the way to go. I wouldn’t want to hand plane end grain, nor run it through a planer. With a sled you can get it pretty close and just clean it up with a sander. There have been some good examples of this on the site (e.g., ).

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

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