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Newbie question -- How to plan layout of design

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Forum topic by StevenPortland posted 08-19-2012 06:26 PM 677 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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StevenPortland

3 posts in 859 days


08-19-2012 06:26 PM

Topic tags/keywords: newbie design layout

Hi everyone. After completing a really nice cutting board using strips of walnut and maple, I’m ready to move on to my second project. It will be a 22” x 30” mirror for our entryway. I bought two nice boards from a wood dealer yesterday for the project. They are Santa Maria wood and are both about 2” x 9” x 40”. I wanted to have the finished sizes for the pieces be 22” x 3” x 1.5” for the top and bottom, and 24” x 3” x 1.5” for the sides.
How do I plan the layout? I assume the planer that I have access to might not be able to accept a 9” wide board, so I thought I’d need to rip the boards first. Do I rip each one to 3.5” (to give me 1/2” extra and then plane each one down to 3”? Or do I plane one side of the board and then use that side as a reference point so that I can rip the individual pieces at 3” directly? The reason I ask is that I’m now thinking of adding a ledge/shelf to the bottom of the mirror, which means that I need to converse the wood so I have enough for the ledge. Thanks for your guidance on this simple question.


6 replies so far

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jmos

681 posts in 1122 days


#1 posted 08-29-2012 04:09 PM

Stephen, surprised there haven’t been any replies on this one.

I don’t know what tools you have access to, so I’ll go through a general milling for you. First, you always want to cut oversized when milling. I would rip the boards to at least 3 1/4” width, maybe 3 1/2”. If you have one flat edge, you can go right to the table saw to rip, if not, you need to make one edge reasonably flat. A few quick passes on a jointer will do this, or there are jigs and methods to do this on a tablesaw.

Next, take you 4 blanks to the jointer and make one face flat. Watch grain direction to minimize tearout.

Next, take 4 blanks with flat reference face to the thickness planer. Plane with reference face on the bed until you get the top flattened (the planer is cutting the entire top face of the board). Take shallow cuts, watch grain direction to minimize tearout. Once you’ve got both faces flat and parallel, if you’ve still got material to remove, flip the board and alternate taking some off of each side. It’s best to do all 4 boards at the same time so they are the same thickness when you are done (final pass on all 4 boards is done with the same setting on the planer.)

If you’re removing 1/2”, you might want to mill close to your final thickness and stop, leaving some meat to be removed. After a few days the wood may move and this will give you some material to play with to get it flat again.

Once your done at the planer you have 4 boards of the same thickness that each have two flat and parallel faces.

Now, back to the jointer to joint one edge. Watch you feed direction to minimize tearout and joint one edge, doesn’t matter which.

Next, back to the tablesaw. Rip the edge that is not jointed. Now you can rip to final width. (If you’re going let the wood sit to see if it moves on you, don’t rip all the way to final width yet, leave some fat) When you rip to width, rip matching pieces at the same time, with the same TS setting, so if they are off a tad, at least they are identical. In your case, rip all 4 pieces without moving the TS fence.

Now your boards are flat and square on 4 sides.

Lastly, crosscut to length.

For you shelf, you can use the offcuts from ripping the rough boards to width, mill them, and glue them up to make a larger board. I would NOT try to squeeze three 3” wide blanks from a 9” board (which, when you subtract the saw kerf isn’t actually possible anyway) you need to leave yourself room to remove material in milling.

Hopefully this helps,and addresses your question. Let me know if you have more specific question.

-- John

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oldnovice

3870 posts in 2120 days


#2 posted 08-29-2012 07:14 PM

That’s about as comprehensive as possible! Should be done by tommorow .. right?

All that’s left do do is finishing!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View sIKE's profile

sIKE

1271 posts in 2506 days


#3 posted 08-29-2012 07:54 PM

oldnovice, its going to take that long?

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

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StevenPortland

3 posts in 859 days


#4 posted 08-29-2012 08:26 PM

Thanks for the info, guys. Well, with my day job plus 2 little ones that keep me busy at night, I’m afraid I won’t have the mirror built by tomorrow. haha Originally I was going to go with butt joints, but the mentor at the shop that I’m a member of in Portland (www.adxportland.com) has convinced me to try half-lap joints. I feel pretty comfortable with getting the boards cut down and milled to S4S. Those half-lap joints are going to be my biggest challenge I think. I’ll post a photo whenever I get the project completed. Thanks again!

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jmos

681 posts in 1122 days


#5 posted 08-29-2012 09:11 PM

Half laps are most definitely the way to go. Butt joints may hold up in a frame, better if you reinforce them with dowels, splines, or biscuits, but a half lap will look much better. I always like to try something new in a project; if you haven’t done a half lap, no time like the present.

Use test pieces and sneak up on the fit. I highly recommend milling your stock long (use all you have in this case) and keep the long cutoffs to test your setups. Keep in mind your joint won’t be perfect off the tablesaw (assuming that’s how your cutting the joint) so give yourself a little extra thickness in the joint to flatten out the glue surfaces.

-- John

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oldnovice

3870 posts in 2120 days


#6 posted 08-29-2012 10:38 PM

Half lap joints can also add some character to the edges!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

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