clamping time for face joints

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Forum topic by jmp posted 03-19-2011 03:34 PM 1817 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View jmp's profile


40 posts in 2890 days

03-19-2011 03:34 PM

Topic tags/keywords: clamping time face joints

I am making a set of table legs by face jointing oak stips . I am using tite bond 3 and wondered how long i should clamp for. suggestions vary from a copulpe of hours to overnight. It is fairly critical that i dont have a joint failure, but as i have several to do and only enough clamps for one leg at time it would be helpful to have an idea the soonest it is safe to release the clamps to be able to start on the next leg



7 replies so far

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 3048 days

#1 posted 03-19-2011 03:44 PM

For the authority, Jonathan, I’d suggest you visit the Franklin site. Perhaps there you’ll get the words from the guys in the white lab coats.

My experience is this: If there is no stress on the joint, that is, if clamping was just a process of getting the wood pieces close enough to generate a little telltale squeezeout but not remove all the glue, then in a couple of hours you can remove the clamps.

If you’re bending any wood or compressing a gap that was there when you did your dry fit, then you’d better wait for the clock to spin around once.

You’re also looking at a wonderful opportunity to pick up a few more clamps, right? ; )



-- " 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 Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3266 days

#2 posted 03-19-2011 04:07 PM

Can you clamp more than one leg at a time? I often glue up multiple pieces by sitting each piece edge up in my clamps as I apply the glue, and not using glue on the face between the first glue up and the next one. (Hopefully this makes sense – lol)

I like to leave things in the clamps overnight whenever I can, but have sometimes had to push it to only an hour or two. That’s never been a problem since TB has a fairly short “grab” time.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View SnowyRiver's profile


51457 posts in 3678 days

#3 posted 03-19-2011 05:55 PM

I think a couple of hours is fine but I wouldnt stress the joint until it is left 8 to 10 hours. I like to leave it overnight if possible. If I understand your question, you could glue up as many faces or pieces as you would want as long as you have enough clamps that fit across the entire glued up piece and of course the more clamps the better.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View emart's profile


445 posts in 2825 days

#4 posted 03-19-2011 06:34 PM

i think it depends on where you live. the temp and humidity will change the drying time. in the summer here i can get away with about 2 hours but any other time i have to let things set for at least 12 hours. and thats me using titebond 3.

-- tools are only as good as the hands that hold them

View childress's profile


841 posts in 3739 days

#5 posted 03-19-2011 06:53 PM

sawkerf – yes you can clamp multiples at once.

jmp – an hour is sufficient… I just did 24 glue ups yesterday (5 at a time) and like SnoweyRiver explains, don’t stress the joint for a while. The bottle say’s don’t stress for 24 hours but overnight works for me. I am now going to run everything that I clamped yesterday through my drum sander today.

Also, I used to leave lamination’s clamped overnight, but what sucks is trying to get the glue off that next day. If you pull them out of the clamps after an hour (which is fine) then you can scrape the semi-hard squeeze out off without any problems and it won’t take any chunks of wood with it :)

-- Childress Woodworks

View DLCW's profile


530 posts in 2852 days

#6 posted 03-20-2011 01:22 AM

Clamp for 3 to 6 hours depending on temperature. The colder it is the longer they need to stay in clamps. The important thing is to NOT over tighten the clamps. This is critical. If you have to really clamp down hard to get the pieces to fit together, they aren’t ready to be glued yet. The pieces of wood should fit without any gaps. The amount of glue squeeze out should be just a little bead along the joint line. If you get more then this you are starving the joint and setting up for a failed glue joint somewhere down the road.

Biggest failure of glue joints is starved joints because of the amount of clamping pressure used to get things to line up or there is a gap in the joint and the glue won’t add strength across this gap.

-- Don, Diamond Lake Custom Woodworks - - "If you make something idiot proof, all they do is make a better idiot"

View jmp's profile


40 posts in 2890 days

#7 posted 03-21-2011 11:05 PM

Thanks for all the advice. I have now finished all my legs and generally clamped for 3-4 hours with not too much clamping pressure. so far so good



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