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Gluing up narrow oak for thick table legs

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Forum topic by Gator posted 11-22-2010 01:18 AM 9833 views 3 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Gator

379 posts in 3137 days


11-22-2010 01:18 AM

Topic tags/keywords: table legs oak tip question milling joining shaker

I am starting to build a hall table for the LOML. The design I am using has 2.5” tapered legs. I have a bunch of Red oak, but it is all 4/4. I thought I saw an article about glueing up 3/4” boards to make table legs in a way that would give you the grain on the two sides you can see. My lumber is not 1/4 sawn.
I would think I will need to glue up 4 boards of 3/4” each and then plane them to final dimension, but am not sure how to arrange the grain for the glue up, or if this is even possible?

Any help would be appreciated ..

Gator

-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.


12 replies so far

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

4997 posts in 3124 days


#1 posted 11-22-2010 02:10 AM

I’m doing a project now where the legs need to be 2 1/8” square … I had a bunch of 4/4 stock that I planed down to 3/4” and ripped to 2” wide.

On each piece, I cut a rabbet 3/4” wide and 5/8” deep, then glued the four sides together.

The space in the middle is open, so they are hollow, and I chamfered the corners, which effectively hides the glue joint.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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Gator

379 posts in 3137 days


#2 posted 11-22-2010 03:00 AM

That is a great idea, but I am not sure how it would work on the tapered legs. I may have to re-think the legs, and go with a straight leg .. the table dimensions are 44” x 15” x 29”. I was worried straight legs would make it look too “boxy” .. but if I can’t come up with something I will try your method and see if I can make it work.

Thanks.

-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2311 days


#3 posted 11-22-2010 05:19 AM

Dane’s construct is elegant and nifty, but the taper can be real critical visually—kudos to you for being sensitive to that.

Your idea will work, and you’ll have fun finding the best way to arrange the leg pieces. My one suggestion is that, once you have glued them up and trued them and cut them to length (prior to tapering), mark the tops so you know what two surfaces face outside.

Also, know that you can taper just two surfaces and get a good result—it doesn’t have to be all four.

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

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Gregn

1642 posts in 2444 days


#4 posted 11-22-2010 08:37 PM

Does this help?
http://lumberjocks.com/bsherman/blog/12526
At least it gets to the idea although its about repair it shows how he did the glue up.
Otherwise try Googling Quadrilinear legs.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

4997 posts in 3124 days


#5 posted 11-22-2010 09:00 PM

Gator … A lot of Mission/A&C furniture uses straight legs, but adds corbels which can provide some of the visual effect you get from a tapered leg. A set of corbels might do the trick for you.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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Gator

379 posts in 3137 days


#6 posted 11-23-2010 02:14 AM

Thanks guys… I was only planning on tapering the insides.. sorry I should have mentioned that, but I am always open for options.. I am actually going to try a glue up of Danesidea, and see what I can make work, as the more I think about it.. the more I like it.. possibly calculate how much I can taper the inside two faves, and then round over the two outside edges.. ?
I will not be able to get into the shop for a few days as I just have too much on my plate rigt now.. but it gives me a few days to rethink my design. If I was any good with sketchup I would post my idea.. but it is only a hard copy at this point.

Gator

-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.

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TheDane

4997 posts in 3124 days


#7 posted 11-23-2010 03:14 PM

Gator—- Just a quick post-script … think about doing the glue-up, do it in stages. The first time I did one of these I tried to glue all four sides at one time … not a good idea. It was hard to manage and I had a h@!! of a time getting the clamps on. On my current project, I glued/clamped two sides together to form a V, let the glue dry, then gluded/clamped the V’s together.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Pick's profile

Pick

30 posts in 2494 days


#8 posted 11-23-2010 04:48 PM

I really like TheDane’s idea, until he mentioned doing the glueup in stages. Have you considered a lock-miter bit? Benefits: The outside glue line ends up exactly on the corner, looks no different than a standard miter-joint—-AND, the extra ridges in a lock-miter aid in assembly, not allowing things to slide around. I recently used it in making some 3×3 maple legs for a coffee table.

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

4997 posts in 3124 days


#9 posted 11-23-2010 05:11 PM

Pick is right … I just don’t happen to have a lock-miter bit set (I see them listed for $60 and up). I did all of my cutting on the table saw.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2311 days


#10 posted 11-23-2010 05:43 PM

Low tech solution which really works (from my friend Greg Fulton, a master woodworker):

Prepare ample stock. for 16 staves, I’d make 18 or 19. Half inch over length would be fine. You may end up rejecting a couple.

Miter them and then arrange them in a way that pleases your eye.

Keeping them outside-up, tape across three joints with 5 or 6 pieces of masking tape, leaving a tag end to complete the last joint.

Flop the tambour over and spread your glue and roll the boards up like an enchilada, taping it tight.

At this point, traditional clamps will just give you apoplexy. Leave them hanging on the wall, and clamp it with rubber or 4” shrink wrap.

If your saw blade is sharp (and you have a blade stiffener) and your angle is true, you have very good looking miters. You may need a little putty, but only the resident hamsters will be aware of that.

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View ChristopherHawkins's profile

ChristopherHawkins

6 posts in 1168 days


#11 posted 01-24-2015 02:34 PM

Lee’s suggestion from Greg Fulton makes a lot of sense to me and I’m looking forward to taking a look at some of his other posts.

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2523 posts in 2899 days


#12 posted 01-24-2015 02:48 PM

I find that if you glue them without rabbeting them and are a little careful with the grain choice, the seam will hardly be noticable. It’s all edge grain.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

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