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Forum topic by maplerock posted 10-28-2014 08:00 PM 1069 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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521 posts in 1218 days

10-28-2014 08:00 PM

Topic tags/keywords: insulation cold glue wood

I have a very large project about 60% finished. It is two very large pieces, and made mostly of plywood with poplar supports and oak trim. Very large and heavy.

I have been working on it in my detached garage and now am leaving town for 10-11 days with the project incomplete. The weather will run the gamut while I’m gone… from 25-30 degrees to 70-75 degrees. The wood is all indide the unheated building. I do have a furnace in there, but it has so many areas that are not well insulated that it would cost a fortune to heat while i’m gone.

So, here’s the question: I did lots of gluing on this project. Can I leave it in the unheated garage for 2 weeks? What do you guys think? It is an expensive and very important job.



-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

15 replies so far

View Ocelot's profile


1458 posts in 2056 days

#1 posted 10-28-2014 08:15 PM

Is this another giant box? ;-)


View Gafarmer's profile


6 posts in 734 days

#2 posted 10-28-2014 08:16 PM

How much time has the glue had to cure?

View dlgWoodWork's profile


159 posts in 3172 days

#3 posted 10-28-2014 08:36 PM

The humidity changes will have move direct affect than the temp changes will. I would think that in 10-11 days you should be ok. But “should be” is a relative term. If the project is important and expensive, I would move the pieces inside your house. You could still have slight humidity changes, but at least it would be more stable than in the unheated shop.

Better to move the large heavy pieces and not need to, than to not move them and wish you had later.

-- Check out my projects and videos

View richardwootton's profile


1698 posts in 1373 days

#4 posted 10-28-2014 08:57 PM

I know it’s going to suck, but I have to agree with dlg…

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training

View doubleDD's profile


5054 posts in 1461 days

#5 posted 10-28-2014 09:18 PM

I agree about the glue being dry. It would also depend on the grade plywood you used. Cheaper plwwood will have a tendency to warp easier. I store baltic birch in the garage and have no problems with the fluctuating temperatures here in Illinois. As others have said you may be taking a chance since we don’t know the project. The temp in the garage won’t fluctuate as much as the out side temps.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Greg In Maryland's profile

Greg In Maryland

550 posts in 2416 days

#6 posted 10-28-2014 09:45 PM


My personal opinion is to just go on your trip (vacation, hopefully) and relax. If the case work can’t handle what is thrown at it over the next two weeks, then you know. All you have done is discover a problem earlier, because if the case is prone to problems there isn’t anything really you can do to stop it.

Of course my opinion really does not amount to too much to anyone but to me (Do I get a bonus for using four to’s in a sentence?). What I would be concerned with is:

a) smaller partially completed components—By partially completed components I mean drawers, drawer faces, doors, styles, rails, etc. Take all of those inside. Those love to warp when you are not looking.

b) raw materials—I would be concerned with materials you have or are about to cut or dimension. Flat plywood is likely not to be too flat when you return. If this does not apply, don’t go out and buy any materials until after you are back.

c) glue and finishes—glue (and water based finishes, maybe?) freeze. Don’t let this happen.

Good luck!


View REO's profile


883 posts in 1492 days

#7 posted 10-28-2014 09:49 PM

|It’ll be fine. The glue is dry witch is the top consideration. cabinetry and wood work get moved cross country and spends time in storage units without damage.

View DocSavage45's profile


7646 posts in 2261 days

#8 posted 10-29-2014 01:14 AM

Moisture is more of an issue than temperature. How big a project? Is it finished on both sides (in and out)? Heat in winter without moisture can do damage.

What is the temp in the shop when you go in? before you turn on the furnace?

And it is better to know know that when it’s finished.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View maplerock's profile


521 posts in 1218 days

#9 posted 10-29-2014 01:25 AM

Thanks guys! It is about 3 large pieces of 3/4 inch oak plywood that I have to assemble later with kreg pocket joints and glue. The biggest parts are 1 1/2” thick, glued and screwed.

If the temp was mild (40-60) the furnace would help and not run too much… if it was 25-40 most of the time the furnace would run a lot. There are lots of gaps (pole barn.)

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

View DocSavage45's profile


7646 posts in 2261 days

#10 posted 10-29-2014 01:32 AM

Maybe you can stuff the leaks with plastic bags until you can get it tightened up? When it’s 30 below here the leaks suck the heat big time . LOL!

Check weather channel online for temps while you are away?

Best of luck.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Roger's profile


19709 posts in 2222 days

#11 posted 10-29-2014 10:19 PM

Would they be safe if you wrapped them with moving blankets?? ........Like the cloth ones at Harbor Freight. ??

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Don W's profile

Don W

17871 posts in 1986 days

#12 posted 10-30-2014 12:32 AM

I agree with Greg, if it can’t take 2 weeks unheated, there is more wrong than the weather. It should be fine.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View bondogaposis's profile


3969 posts in 1769 days

#13 posted 10-30-2014 12:56 AM

If you used Titebond II The glue should be fully cured after 24 hours, after that it shouldn’t matter what the temperature is.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View wseand's profile


2754 posts in 2460 days

#14 posted 10-30-2014 02:22 AM

I have left projects in the garage for weeks in mid doneness and mid fall/winter and never had any problems. You should be fine.

-- Bill - "Freedom flies in your heart like an Eagle" Audie Murphy

View MrRon's profile


3891 posts in 2662 days

#15 posted 11-04-2014 07:47 PM

If it were me, I would drape a large moving blanket over it and place a small lamp inside. A 15 or 25 W bulb would be ok. Just make sure it’s not touching anything. Put the lamp inside a metal can or under a metal coffee can for safety.

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