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Trying to make doors but 1/4" birch ply is not really 1/4" thick

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Forum topic by noone posted 04-27-2012 01:54 AM 4191 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


04-27-2012 01:54 AM

I just cut my first dado in a piece of polar and did a test fit with some 1/4” ply only to find out that it’s more like 3/16” thick.

How do you fit your door panels?


22 replies so far

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2136 posts in 2573 days


#1 posted 04-27-2012 02:19 AM

This is where owning a set of calipers comes in handy. Panels are often a little thinner than their listed width. For 1/4 inch, I measure with calipers to get the true width and use a regular saw blade and make multiple passes until it fits snugly. If you overlap the cuts, you can sneak up on the proper gap.

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#2 posted 04-27-2012 02:39 AM

I do have digital calipers. I just don’t understand. All the door tutorials, even in this forum say nothing about this. Now I feel like I wasted my money on this $100 dado stack.

I just spent a 1/2 hour setting it up with a PERFECT 1/4” cut right down the dead center of true 3/4” thick poplar.

I don’t see how you can make consistent cuts across multiple boards making multiple passes. Unless you’re flipping the board and cutting from the other side to get the perfect thickness.

A little frustrated right now.

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2735 posts in 2041 days


#3 posted 04-27-2012 02:46 AM

I’d either use 3/8” ply and rabbet the back to fit a 1/4” groove snugly, or use a regular saw blade and make two passes. To make the groove with a regular blade, do the setup with test pieces; make the first cut with the fence set slightly off center, flip the piece so the other face is against the fence, and you have a perfectly centered groove, and after a few test cuts, it will be the perfect size too.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#4 posted 04-27-2012 02:50 AM

So is my dado stack only good for rabbets????

I guess I have to do this-
http://www.table-saw-guide.com/building-cabinet-doors.html

View ShaneA's profile

ShaneA

6472 posts in 2062 days


#5 posted 04-27-2012 03:03 AM

the dado stack will be good for other uses, and dadoes 1/4” and larger. you will just want to make sure to have test pieces of the same thickness to dial in your fit…be it a single blade or multiple blades/chippers and shims.

View cabmaker's profile

cabmaker

1507 posts in 2273 days


#6 posted 04-27-2012 03:05 AM

Im a bit confused, are you talking about a plow for inserting door panels ? (where does dado come in?) There are 5mm cutters to do what I think your doing.

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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#7 posted 04-27-2012 03:05 AM

I guess it will work for dado sizes 1/4” and larger, due to all the shims that came with it. I just incorrectly assumed I could use this dado set to make doors.

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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#8 posted 04-27-2012 03:07 AM

Yes, I’m trying to build shaker doors and cabinet panels with only a table saw. No router. Figured I could use a 1/4” dado, no problem. Guess not.

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TCCcabinetmaker

930 posts in 1819 days


#9 posted 04-27-2012 03:53 AM

run a test piece without the metal shims between the stacked blades, you might be surprised that it should come out just about right. because without the shims, the blades don’t space out to a full quarter inch., and it should be 7/32 not 3/16 ;)

-- The mark of a good carpenter is not how few mistakes he makes, but rather how well he fixes them.

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 2314 days


#10 posted 04-27-2012 04:14 AM

I think what you’re dealing with is 5.2 mm ply. It’s the new .25 inches.

It is possible to glue in your panels and then shim them from the back with laminate samples so they look right from the front. Take the shims out when the glue sets. No one will ever know.

Kindly,

Lee

-- "...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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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#11 posted 04-27-2012 11:38 AM

“run a test piece without the metal shims between the stacked blades, you might be surprised that it should come out just about right. because without the shims, the blades don’t space out to a full quarter inch., and it should be 7/32 not 3/16 ;)”

The dado set I’m using is the Freud diablo one and the inner and outer blade stacked together creates a 1/4” gap. I don’t think I can get smaller than that without just using one blade and multiple passes?

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noone

559 posts in 1736 days


#12 posted 04-27-2012 11:42 AM

Lee, I’m kind of liking your idea for making panels, but I’m wondering how this will work when I apply it to doors. I’m thinking the paint won’t fill the gap well on the backside. Can I use caulk on the back of the doors? I’ve been using caulk to fill 1/32 gaps and such where the back meets the frame on the cabinets, so I guess I don’t see why not. :)

View CampD's profile

CampD

1474 posts in 2950 days


#13 posted 04-27-2012 12:14 PM

Ahh the shrinking plywood (just like everything else, is a gallon of milk really a gallon anymore?)
Only true 1/4” plywood left is 5-7 core Baltic birch.
Anyway without a router table and a 5.2 mm cutter the only other way to cut your Daddo is to use your table saw with your regular 1/8 blade.
Make one pass, flip it over to make the second pass. Set-up takes some time and use cut-off scrapes from your rails.

-- Doug...

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Howie

2656 posts in 2387 days


#14 posted 04-27-2012 12:16 PM

You could always use a strip of quarter round on the back side. Mitered in at the corners and let the panel float.

-- Life is good.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17965 posts in 2031 days


#15 posted 04-27-2012 01:05 PM

If your going to paint them, I’d use caulk. The gap should be minor, and unnoticable after painting. If its a clear finish, the a molding may be a better fit, or a thin shim if you can get it evenly spaced.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.net

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