Problem with bowed wood

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Forum topic by MaroonGoon posted 02-22-2014 06:19 PM 1108 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View MaroonGoon's profile


281 posts in 2102 days

02-22-2014 06:19 PM

Houston, we have a problem. I thickness planed this cherry a few weeks ago and put it under my bed till I had the chance to turn them into a table top. Well I now notice that a couple of boards have slightly bowed. Here is a pic of one bowed board against a straight board and then me applying slight pressure in the middle to flush the two boards together. I’m afraid that after I edge glue them the one board will eventually bow back.

I was thinking that I could use a sliding dovetail across the middle of the boards to act as a straightener to resist the bowing but I’d hate for it not to work and for it to just make the problem worse.

What do y’all think? Sorry if the pics are sideways I am having to upload them from my phone.

-- "Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone." -- Pablo Picasso

5 replies so far

View firefighterontheside's profile


19051 posts in 2000 days

#1 posted 02-22-2014 06:44 PM

Are those edge boards edge jointed and ready to be glued? I would think that you can glue them up and they will then function as a unit. Assuming that this table will have aprons these will help keep the top straight.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Handtooler's profile


1626 posts in 2276 days

#2 posted 02-22-2014 07:23 PM

I’ll wait to hear from others, but I certainly believe the use of biscuit joints or dowels in the joints will aid in preventing further bowing. Have the boards acclimated to the humidity that you plan to construct the top or the place where it’ll be located after completion? That’ll make a difference.

-- Russell Pitner Hixson, TN 37343

View Don W's profile

Don W

18959 posts in 2711 days

#3 posted 02-22-2014 07:24 PM

If you can spring them back that easy, glue them up. The ones that are bowed should be reversed so they work against each other.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Tony_S's profile


923 posts in 3226 days

#4 posted 02-22-2014 08:20 PM

That’s pretty minor.

Like Don suggested….alternate the growth rings and glue them up.

-- It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle

View MaroonGoon's profile


281 posts in 2102 days

#5 posted 02-23-2014 10:28 PM

Thanks for the advice, guys. The bow is fairly small and is easily corrected with little force so I may just edge glue it up and wait a few says before I continue building the frame. If it remains flush then I’ll continue, if not I’ll probably redo it using dowels like was recommended by Handtooler.

-- "Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone." -- Pablo Picasso

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