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What to steam wood with?

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Forum topic by CartersWhittling posted 846 days ago 2445 views 2 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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CartersWhittling

451 posts in 1277 days


846 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question wood steamer steam bending

Hello.

I am trying to find a way to produce the steam for wood bending. Could you guys help me out and let me know the different ways you can produce the steam for a steam box? I am wanting something that doesn’t take up loads of space and doesn’t cost a lot of money either.

-- And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord... Colossians 3:23 http://carterswhittling.wordpress.com/


19 replies so far

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

4752 posts in 1180 days


#1 posted 846 days ago

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=30714&site=ROCKLER&filter=steam%20bending%20kit

This may give you some ideas and good luck on your project.

Your hand made plans are awesome, keep doing the good work!

View Scot's profile

Scot

344 posts in 1999 days


#2 posted 846 days ago

Used professional wallpaper steamers work fantastic and are safe. I got mine on ebay for $175 (almost new). They usually run $200-300. I got lucky on mine and caught a better than usual deal.

-- If the old masters had power tools, they would have used them. So get off your damn High Horse.

View Dallas's profile

Dallas

2857 posts in 1090 days


#3 posted 846 days ago

I use a hot plate, some PVC pipe and an old stove top coffee pot. Total cost about $10 at yard sales.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View luv2learn's profile

luv2learn

1642 posts in 906 days


#4 posted 846 days ago

I like this method DIY Steam Box

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View Richard's profile

Richard

795 posts in 1293 days


#5 posted 846 days ago

Norm abrams has good example on an episode that he made a bentwood hat rack. Not sure of the episode name or number but I will try look it up when I get home.
It used a brand new gas can on top of a burner and some radiator hose and a large PVC tube with a cap on it.

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

3561 posts in 2337 days


#6 posted 846 days ago

I’ve got my eye on the side burner of my gas grille. The one for cooking a pot of corn on the cob, or lobstah. Plus it’s already outdoors. Should be more than enough heat for a pot of water and some stovepipe flue.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112001 posts in 2180 days


#7 posted 846 days ago

I use an electric tea kettle type steamer and a hose into a DIY steam box. Many times you can soak wood in hot water
and bend it if it’s thin enough or just use thin strips just glued together into a lamination with out heat at all.

http://books.google.com/books?id=s_YDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA68&lpg=PA68&dq=mike+dunbar+steam+box&source=bl&ots=B2v9jCo9PZ&sig=vH_txjVHAZxlZ1WxM4LozKBPlNM&hl=en&sa=X&ei=BIt8T5mMJsmPiAKOh4H1DQ&sqi=2&ved=0CDcQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=mike%20dunbar%20steam%20box&f=false

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View YorkshireStewart's profile

YorkshireStewart

1106 posts in 2504 days


#8 posted 846 days ago

For my yew Windsor chair, I used a domestic wallpaper stripper connected to a length of rainwater pipe. The plastic pipe did go a bit limp! However, supported on a length of timber, all was well.

Click for details

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business. http://www.folksy.com/shops/TreeGems

View DrDirt's profile

DrDirt

2364 posts in 2345 days


#9 posted 846 days ago

I’m with A1Jim – - -though it is hard to find a METAL electric kettle anymore.
Most are plastic with a thermal cutout, that shuts off at the most inopportune times…..

Check out the salvation army/DAV thrift stores see if you can find one of the old 1950-1970 era ones

-- "If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astonish ourselves." Edison

View Jeff in Huntersville's profile

Jeff in Huntersville

398 posts in 1797 days


#10 posted 846 days ago

I echo Scot’s wallpaper steamer idea. Although I use a Wagner steamer from Lowes. It’s cheaper. It depends on the volume and duration of steam you need. I have a 6” ABS tube, 4 ft long I use for relatively small pieces. The steamer lasts for about 45 minutes if started full.

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1718 days


#11 posted 846 days ago

basicly you collect some water before you boil the water and use the steam from it …. LOL

okay joke aside :-)

the cheapest is to steal ….eeergh borrow moms stealkettle and leed the steam into
a steam bed made of wood and 1-1½ meter of cobbertube with holes and an endcap

there is several on L J that has made one and posted them as projects

you can use one of the modern kettles if you shortcut the thermo cuout
but then you have to be very carefull not to let it boiling dry….. you don´t want a fire
now your water is steam … lol

good luck with your steam project

Dennis

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

4843 posts in 1401 days


#12 posted 846 days ago

I used to use an oil fired pressure washer modified to dramatically reduce the water going through but I was steaming much larger things than I suspect you are.
One thing to think about if you are steaming many or thick pieces, is that hotter steam created under pressure will get the job done more quickly. I’m not sure exactly what the temperatures were that we used to run but 225 to 230 degrees sounds about right. We went by the appearance of the steam more than the temperature. You want it about ten degrees lower than the point where it becomes clear. That is if it’s nice and white, it’s not too hot.
Inch and a half Oak will be bendable in about half the time it would take at non-pressure temps.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fiberglass trees. http://prmdesigns.com/

View CartersWhittling's profile

CartersWhittling

451 posts in 1277 days


#13 posted 846 days ago

Thanks for all the help guys, it is much appreciated.

-- And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord... Colossians 3:23 http://carterswhittling.wordpress.com/

View Howie's profile

Howie

2656 posts in 1526 days


#14 posted 846 days ago

I bought a wallpaper steamer at Goodwill for 10 bucks. Works good for thin strips(up to 1/4”)

-- Life is good.

View BobM001's profile

BobM001

388 posts in 933 days


#15 posted 846 days ago

I recall seeing a “rig” that used a large pot that the branch of a 12” 24 gauge tee was inserted into the pot. Then equal lengths of the same sized pipe wher inserted into the “run” sides of the tee. These pieces were long enough so that there was about 6” of void on each end based on the length of the pieces to be steamed. They were doing bent wood rockers as I recall. A short piece of “riser” into the tee branch would keep any liquid from contacting the wood if a hard boil was in process. The steam poured out of the ends of the pipes. Perhaps a turkey fryer burner/pot would make a good source for doing larger pieces. Find a reducer that would fit the top of the pot and build from there.

-- OK, who's the wise guy that shrunk the plywood?

showing 1 through 15 of 19 replies

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