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Forum topic by Mark posted 09-24-2013 02:50 PM 754 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Mark's profile


670 posts in 1014 days

09-24-2013 02:50 PM

Morning all. I’m going to make a bench for my lathe using 2×4 cut down to 44”. I would like to laminate the 2×4 the flat (glued and screwed) after I square up the edges. Should I be concerned about wood movement? I built my work bench with 2×4 but I built it with the 2×4 on edge.

Thanks for your help.

-- Mark

6 replies so far

View brtech's profile


773 posts in 1962 days

#1 posted 09-24-2013 03:29 PM

Yes, of course. The width of the wood (3 1/2) will change with humidity relative to, say, the length of a stretcher on the base of the bench. So, use lag screws to hold the top to the base, tie one side down (maybe the side that faces you as you work) and put an elongated hole in the stretcher on the opposite side so the width of the top can change relative to the base.

Matthias measured pine at about 1% shrinkage, so if the drawing is accurate (5 boards at 3.5” each), you have to account for .175” of movement.

View bigblockyeti's profile


2448 posts in 760 days

#2 posted 09-24-2013 04:31 PM

I would definitely take wood movement into consideration. On projects such as the one your suggesting I’ve found that if I secure only one of the sides so that it can’t move then leave the opposite side secured (usually with a screw) in a slot to allow the panel to expand and contract with changes in humidity. The same would be done in the middle, but with the slot only needing to be half the width.

View shipwright's profile


6189 posts in 1838 days

#3 posted 09-24-2013 09:42 PM

Why not plywood ???

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fiberglass trees.

View PurpLev's profile


8520 posts in 2688 days

#4 posted 09-24-2013 09:54 PM

yes you will need to plan for movement – but not in regard to the top glue-up – in that it won’t matter as all the parts will move in the same direction. where you need to account for this is where you connect the top to the base/legs. you will need to either use figure-8 or similar hardware to attach the top, or only screw it to the front of the base leaving the back the ability to move with seasonal changes.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Don W's profile

Don W

16669 posts in 1607 days

#5 posted 09-24-2013 09:59 PM

No, you shouldn’t be concerned. You should however allow for it.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Mark's profile


670 posts in 1014 days

#6 posted 09-24-2013 11:04 PM

Thanks for all the advice gents. I’m thinkin’ I’ll build it like the work bench with the 2×4 on edge.

-- Mark

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