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Forum topic by Wahine_Woodworker posted 02-11-2011 01:55 AM 853 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Wahine_Woodworker

22 posts in 1316 days


02-11-2011 01:55 AM

Topic tags/keywords: wet fence baords cedar

So… I feel a little sheepish on this one. I bought some cedar fence boards (1”x6”) that will be the facing on some “distressed plantation style” planter (basically pretty boxes that will hold plant pots). The cedar was a little wet and Im wondering what will happen If I finish them (poly) like that. The thing is, I don’t have too much time to let them dry out more. I forget what the moisture content was, but they were mostly dry. Should have planned better and bought the wood a while ago.


8 replies so far

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Alexander

190 posts in 1763 days


#1 posted 02-11-2011 02:06 AM

The 1”X6” cedar I used around the fence for the propane tank was fit tight to each other. They came right from HD to my project. I stained them. Now there is a space about 1/8” to3/16” between each board. This is what might happen to your project.

-- John at Sugarloft Mountain........Don't argue with an idiot; people watching may not be able to tell the difference.

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Gofor

470 posts in 2439 days


#2 posted 02-11-2011 03:27 AM

Do not finish until they dry. Yes, they will shrink and poly does not like wet. The good side is that cedar, especially thin planks, dries pretty fast. Stack them with spacers between them to let the air flow through. If your home is air conditioned, place them where they will get the dehumidified air off the air condition blowing past them. If not, then a fan will help speed the process. (Or you could run to the nearest lava flow and dry them that way. We don’t have many of those here in the eastern 48 so I am just speculating and don’t know if it would work. LOL)

You did not specify whether it was western cedar or aromatic (eastern red) cedar. Eastern red cedar will turn brown and then silver gray upon exposure to ultraviolet/sunlight, and needs no coating. Pretty much bug and rot resistant here (but I don’t think anything is resistant to those nasty Formosan termites). Even if you coat it, it will turn colors outdoors, so you may just want to use an oil, like a deck preservative. Although you will have to refinish occasionally, it will be much easier. The only place it will retain its red color is in a shadowed place like a closet or chest interior.

I have never worked with western cedar, and only am familiar with its use in humidors, so can’t help with that.

JMTCW

Go

-- Go http://ncwoodworker.net/pp/showgallery.php?cat=500&ppuser=730

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bluplanet

31 posts in 1314 days


#3 posted 02-11-2011 06:26 AM

I made a 4’ x 8’ garden box from cedar fence boards this last fall. It has 4×4 cedar corner posts and connecting cedar 2×4’s between the posts. The 2×4’s are dadoed to accept the slats. I figured the width based on the length of a half of a fence picket and the length on one and a half pickets. The thing has galvanized screen on the bottom to keep critters from getting up through the bottom and the 2×4’s are held tight together with some galvanized wire strung through them from top to bottom. I attached them to the corner posts with dowel pins and angle brackets on the inside. I finished it off by lining the inside of the walls with some poly-tarp stapled into the top 2×4. I plan on making another next year. I have no idea what the moisture content was when I assembled it, but I’m sure the wire, dowels and brackets will hold it all together.

Did you make that rocking chair? I want to make Windsor chairs. Much of those are made with green wood.

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Wahine_Woodworker

22 posts in 1316 days


#4 posted 02-11-2011 07:26 AM

Thanks for the info. They seem to be drying fast, they were at between 14-20% moisture content yesterday, and I am keeping them in my dads de-humidified shop. I am expecting some shrinkage. These are going in a commercial space so I want them to look pretty. Im going to sand them out and stain them with a water based dye. Will the poly crack or something if the wood shrinks?
alexander- yea, i got my cedar from HD also. It really fit the bill for price since I needed so much. The boxes are 80”x20”x30”
blueplanet- I didn’t make the chair, however, I did refinish it and put the rockers on

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bluplanet

31 posts in 1314 days


#5 posted 02-11-2011 07:49 AM

Your biggest problem with the finish on drying wood would be that the widths might shrink exposing gaps or wood the stain didn’t get to. Of course, you could always pre-stain the wood before assembly. I also got mine from HD. I cut a half inch off the top end so the angle cuts wouldn’t be exposed. The angle cuts were larger than that, but what’s left is buried in the dado.

I have a rocking chair I’m putting new rockers on as well. I bought some 1/4” x 2-1/4” maple strips at Menards and will glue them up and clamp them in an OSB form. The chair has one broken rocker and I figure I’ll need to replace both to get them matched. I’m going to be making a steam bender this year, but won’t need it for this laminated-bend job.

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Wahine_Woodworker

22 posts in 1316 days


#6 posted 02-11-2011 08:24 PM

blue- yea, i need to make a form like that. we had one in my old shop, but im not there anymore. the last rocker i did was with solid oak (silver) but the grain ran perfectly with the contour of the rocker so there was no fear of run out.

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bluplanet

31 posts in 1314 days


#7 posted 02-11-2011 09:38 PM

Wahine,
You probably know more about wood than I because I’m just getting started and learned very little from my daddy.
But I am half way through my second reading of “Understanding Wood” by Bruce Headley. It’s fascinating, but it’s not the best way to learn—not for me anyway.

I would equate curved wood with reaction wood and would be afraid to use it out of fear it would twist and distort with changes in humidity. I’ve got much to learn.

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Wahine_Woodworker

22 posts in 1316 days


#8 posted 02-12-2011 12:52 AM

Ahh, good point. I have much to learn myself. thanks blue

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