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Forum topic by drainyoo posted 400 days ago 828 views 0 times favorited 35 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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drainyoo

26 posts in 401 days


400 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: bench joint joining modern

I’m designing a bench that I’m planning to build soon, and it’s pretty much complete, except for one joint that I’m too sure on yet. If you look at the image below, the joint in question is where the solid part of the bench meets the slats. Right now I have a supporting piece (visible in the side image) on the underside that joins the two, but this feels flimsy to me. Is there a better, stronger, cleaner way of joining the slats and the solid board? Thanks in advance!


35 replies so far

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Tennessee

1447 posts in 1119 days


#1 posted 400 days ago

Boy, there will be about a thousand replies to this. For me, if I was to build this for my shop, I think I would do a large surface lap joint with the slats on the top half of the joint, glued, screwed and plugged if possible to the bottom half. You need to make it almost as one. It might also be a good idea to keep the support brace underneath at the joint, glued. I’m assuming at some point you will be going back and forth with some motion, (sanding, planning, etc.) on the top so it will have to stand the back and forth movement.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

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pintodeluxe

3281 posts in 1418 days


#2 posted 400 days ago

Make the whole length a glueup. Solid on one side, and slatted on the other. So some boards would run the entire length of the bench, and other boards would only run part way across. This will allow the whole top to be run through the planer for uniform thickness.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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Mosquito

4515 posts in 897 days


#3 posted 400 days ago

My initial thought was the same as Willie’s ^

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist - www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods

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bondogaposis

2448 posts in 956 days


#4 posted 400 days ago

Make the whole length a glueup.

Yup, that’s how I would do it.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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drainyoo

26 posts in 401 days


#5 posted 400 days ago

Thanks guys! But with a glueup wouldn’t the “solid” part still have visible stripes? I would like that solid area to also look like a solid piece of wood.

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UpstateNYdude

421 posts in 588 days


#6 posted 400 days ago

M&T into the solid piece and evenly space M&T into a breadboard joint at the other end would make it pretty solid, that is the only other way I can see it being done other then the aforementioned above.

-- Nick, “Discovering the truth about ourselves is a lifetime's work, but it's worth the effort.” ― Fred Rogers, Be My Neighbor

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drainyoo

26 posts in 401 days


#7 posted 400 days ago

Thanks Nick. These are two good options, but it seems like they’re complex and might be out of my skill range. Don’t even think I have the right tools to do it the right way. I’m relatively new to woodworking and this is one of my first projects, but I’m learning as I go. Your suggestions definitely made me aware of better techniques that I wouldn’t have thought of. I’m going to thinking about it more, but I might just make the entire top a solid piece of wood.

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Mosquito

4515 posts in 897 days


#8 posted 400 days ago

the stupidly expensive route would be to get a slab the size you need, and rout out the slats :-P

But yes, it could leave visible strips, depending on wood selection (and realistically, it would be dang hard to get that much grain to match).

What about doing the lamination for all of it, and putting a single sheet/board recessed into the top of the solid end?

Just throwing ideas out there

Also, curious what kind of a bench it is (sitting/workbench) and the size in question (especially thickness)

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist - www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods

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crank49

3343 posts in 1576 days


#9 posted 400 days ago

I’m on board with the one big glue up crowd.
Now, if you want the “solid end” to look like one piece of wood, you could apply a veneer top layer on there.
That starts to make it more interesting because now you will have a bunch of strips of one thickness on one end and a step down to accommodate the veneer on the other end.
But bottom line, that butt joint with the backer board tacked under is gone, as it should be.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

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firefighterontheside

3385 posts in 461 days


#10 posted 400 days ago

Use a piece coming up from the stretcher right under the butt joint and at the same location at the other end. Make sure the stretcher is pretty strong to help support the weight of the seated.

-- Bill M. I love my job as a firefighter, but nothing gives me the satisfaction of running my hand over a project that I have built and just finished sanding.

View Loren's profile

Loren

7276 posts in 2253 days


#11 posted 400 days ago

View Loren's profile

Loren

7276 posts in 2253 days


#12 posted 400 days ago

Blind sliding dovetails.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Loren's profile

Loren

7276 posts in 2253 days


#13 posted 400 days ago

Scarf joints fixed with glue and screws. A ramped
router jig could be used to cut slanted recesses
in the underside of the solid board. A 1:5 ratio
on the scarfs would expose a lot of long grain for
glue surface area.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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Howie

2656 posts in 1528 days


#14 posted 400 days ago

but it seems like they’re complex and might be out of my skill range.

Will not know until you try. That’s the way we all learn.
My choice would be the M&T like others have pointed out.
JMHO.

-- Life is good.

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drainyoo

26 posts in 401 days


#15 posted 400 days ago

You folks are awesome. A lot of great ideas here. Adding support from the stretchers seems interesting and the easiest for me. The dowels are also interesting. How long would the dowels need to be?

For the M&T technique, what kind of tools would I need to cut that? I assume the fit has to be perfect.

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