Drying idea for boards

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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 10-22-2012 03:32 AM 844 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3104 posts in 2527 days

10-22-2012 03:32 AM

I was wondering if you can dry boards with a clamp on the ends to prevent checking while it’s drying. If you put a bar clamp on the end of the board and tighten it to a tightness that will hold the board tight, do you think it would prevent checking?
Would it do other things to the board?
Has anyone tried it?

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

2 replies so far

View Woodknack's profile


12469 posts in 2620 days

#1 posted 10-22-2012 04:36 AM

I don’t believe it would work. The checking is due to uneven drying, the ends drying faster than the center. A clamp might keep it together … until you remove the clamp and my guess is that the checks would open up. I’ve been drying some holly and brushed glue size (thinned wood glue) on the ends and after 8 or 9 months there has been no checking. Some people use paraffin or latex paint, there are also commercial products you can buy.

If you imagine wood grain like a bundle of straws, the ends dry faster because they are “open” (the same reason end grain absorbs stain or finish faster). You want to plug those ends with a vapor barrier so the moisture escapes primarily through the face grain.

-- Rick M,

View derosa's profile


1590 posts in 3076 days

#2 posted 10-22-2012 06:18 AM

I used interior/exterior grade latex and only had minor checking in the 3” thick boards, less then an inch at either end. I do remember someone here claiming they were going to try this and never posting if they did or if it worked. One thing I did do with clamps was use them to hold the stack flat. I put 2×4s upright on the bottom and drilled 3 holes in them, my stickers sat above the 2×4. That let me hook the jaw into the hole and then screw down using a 2×4 above the top sticker. Used 9 clamps in total. I didn’t set the system up till the stack had been drying for 6 weeks and needed to be restacked. The process still removed some of the twisting that was developing and made the apple some of the flatest I’ve ever seen.

-- A posse ad esse

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