Grain direction in outdoor cedar table

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Forum topic by WoodNoob13 posted 02-27-2013 08:35 AM 1349 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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02-27-2013 08:35 AM

So I have a project that I am building. its a cedar grill stand. I plan on making the table top out of .75×3.75” with 1/4 spacing. The bottom shelf will be 1.7 x .75 1/4 inch spacing. My question after searching here and elsewhere is which direction the grain should or could run? I know vertical grain is stronger but the horizontal grain i find more appealing “to my eye” with its slight wave and character. So for the bottom shelf with the boards being 1.7x .75×14.5” does it matter which direction the grain goes?

The boards will be but joined to a bottom apron with glue and pocket screws. I am milling the boards from 4×4s so i can choose, to a certain extent, which direction the grain runs.

Here is my design

What do you think?

Thank you in advance,


2 replies so far

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5088 posts in 2551 days

#1 posted 02-27-2013 01:35 PM

It looks like a nice design. Vertical grain will move about half as much as horizontal grain. So if larger gaps in dry weather don’t bother you then there is no reason not use the horizontal faces. Vertical grain won’t “cup” like horizontal grain has a tendency to, either, so that is another consideration.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 3358 days

#2 posted 02-27-2013 02:54 PM

You want to run the grain horizontally on the slats? You are going to join the slats to the apron with butt joints and screws?

If so, I think the slats will bow up and down their length…and there’s really no reason to leave a 1/4” between the slats in that case (other than aesthetic).

I would run all grain in the long direction of your boards.

-- jay,

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