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post #41 of 99 Old 05-19-2013, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by prinler View Post
Did I mention my wife is pushing me into the pool? I really want to do this don't get me wrong. My wife has set a deadline on this job. I want to do a good job but at the same time I can't afford to go buy a bunch of expensive tools and make it flawless.

Steve
Let me get some pictures for you tomorrow to show you how you can pull this off with the type of tools you have...

I can set up a 'mock up' of something similar so you can better understand what I am talking about here...

You CAN do it with F clamps but it is going to take a LOT more of them and you will need to enlist your wife as a 'helper' so you can get it all done before the glue sets... (the important thing is to make SURE you have everything ready BEFORE you start to glue anything)

You will need more F clamps (one for every 5 to 6 inches), some more of the hardwood like you are making your top out of for 'scraps', a roll of wax paper, and a sheet of cheap 3/4 plywood...

I am guessing that would come to a few hundred bucks or so. Cheaper than 6 or 7 3/4" pipe clamps would be new...
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post #42 of 99 Old 05-19-2013, 11:54 PM Thread Starter
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post #43 of 99 Old 05-19-2013, 11:59 PM
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Well I didn't hear anyone say you had to spend that kind of money. A planer could be had for under $200 but even without the planer, setup and proper technique using clamps and cauls can make or break a project.

I have news for you 9' of counter would be a little heavy and hard to transport but if you need it surfaced try and find a near by cabinet shop. They will probably have a drum sander to surface it.

Well this is the last thing I'm going to say on the matter. I think your taking the advise given in the wrong way. Were not worrying about our skill level vs yours but rather helping you get the best possible results with what you have. Sure we joke about buying new tools to do jobs but that's just in fun. Well some really do use that as an excuse but we're still just kidding around.

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post #44 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:06 AM
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Originally Posted by prinler View Post
What you are doing in that pic by clamping the top down to the table as you are clamping them together...

THAT is what I am taking about! LOL!

Great idea on your part there! Need more of that but you seem to have the idea!
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post #45 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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What you are doing in that pic by clamping the top down to the table as you are clamping them together...

THAT is what I am taking about! LOL!

Great idea on your part there! Need more of that but you seem to have the idea!
Well, it would be crazy for me to ignore the stuff you guys tell me as long as i understand them. I wish i had some plywood to fasten this to. hmmmm

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post #46 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:17 AM Thread Starter
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When a clamp says 1000lbs is that one of those over estimated stats that every manufacture states? What's the real clamp pressure on an f-style clamp? (I'm reading the post you suggested)

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post #47 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:27 AM
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Originally Posted by prinler View Post
When a clamp says 1000lbs is that one of those over estimated stats that every manufacture states? What's the real clamp pressure on an f-style clamp? (I'm reading the post you suggested)

I have no issues cranking my Jorgensons until they flex... I have never been able to break one and they always seem to snap back after the abuse! LOL!

Got no idea what the actual pressure level is but I know they can easily be torqued enough to leave a serious indent in hardwood blocks (used to protect workpiece)

The longer the blocks you use - The more you can spread out that clamping pressure for your top... (even moreso if you can find curved/warped pieces of scrap for protectors/blocks and turn them so that the bow is facing out and towards the clamp - That way the pressue is applied a bit more evenly along the scrap as you tighten)

My general rule is to use as many clamps as needed to get glue to squeeze out all along the joint. If I dont see glue squeezing out I either dont have enough glue or dont have enough clamps.

Last edited by OnealWoodworking; 05-20-2013 at 12:31 AM.
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post #48 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:42 AM Thread Starter
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well that's a good rule of thumb. I had TONS of glue come out. I made sure to put enough.

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post #49 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 01:20 AM
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you need some wax paper under that caul. its going to stick
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post #50 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 03:22 AM
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Originally Posted by prinler View Post
Did I mention my wife is pushing me into the pool? I really want to do this don't get me wrong. My wife has set a deadline on this job. I want to do a good job but at the same time I can't afford to go buy a bunch of expensive tools and make it flawless. Trust me when I say this, it will come out good enough. I understand it may not be flawless but to me and my wife it will be something I did and it works.
I'm sure a lot of pros are reading this going " ah another noob wasting good money on wood just to toss it away on bad technique" we'll sure I can get wood, put it through a $500+ jointer and then put it in a $500+ planer and it would work perfectly. Squeeze it in 50 high end clamps and call it pro. BUT I don't have that. I have a modest home and modest tools I have acquired over the past 6 months at garage sales, estate auctions and swap meets. I just want to make the best stuff I can with my skill level and tools I have available. My wife really wants this and come hell or high water or death I'm gonna give it to her. Even of it looks bad! So please guys, be easy on me, we all want the same thing here. Good old fashioned wood working. I hope to learn and will be doing the easy stuff after I get this done. Would love to make and ugly bench or a bread box or something useful. Heck I might even send it to my mom.

I do thank all of you for the information you have given tho. I will take it and learn from it. It won't be wasted I assure you. I will look into clamps and there different uses.

Steve
Remember, you asked us for advice. Knowbody is being hard on you. We are just telling you the truth and trying to help. Helping somebody with questions like this in a forum can be difficult. True feelings and intent can be misunderstood very easily.

Keep in mind, your top is a large piece. Using 3 to $500 planers and jointers wont work. You are looking at 2 to 3k for each machine that can handle pieces that large. Machines and tools are just like wood, you get what you pay for.

Don't get upset or hurt feelings when you get advice you weren't expecting. Every person in this thread is trying to help you. A lot of us learned a lot of lessons the hard and expensive way. If I can help a novice not make some of the mistakes I did, then I will feel a lot better. Now, if I could get back some of the money I lost by making mistakes I wouldn't have to work so hard.

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post #51 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 03:40 AM
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Originally Posted by prinler View Post
well that's a good rule of thumb. I had TONS of glue come out. I made sure to put enough.
Keep in mind, too much glue is worse than not enough. Also, you don't need 1000k lbs. of clamping force to hold properly milled boards. I guess this is what most of us are getting at. I will offer this advice. If you can't afford the expensive machines, look into hand tools. I use hand planes all the time. I need to use them for projects that my machines can't handle. Before machines were available, woodworkers turned out some amazing work using hand tools. If I could afford the time, I would use hand tools for just about everything. I consider myself a hybrid woodworker. I use power and hand tools. I understand the weaknesses and strengths of both. Most often than not the only weakness of a hand tool is time. Since you are a hobbiest, that won't be an issue.

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post #52 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 04:06 AM
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you will need both types of clamps

The "F" style are great for smaller projects, so hang on to them, but realize they have length limitations. The great thing about pipe clamps is the lengths can be whatever pipe you can acquire.... up to 4-6 ft for the 1/2" ones and up to 8 or 10 ft for the 3/4" ones. I have some 18" pipe I use with the 3/4" size also.

There's another way to make a clamp using 2 wedges against a stopped block. Take a 2 X 4 and nail on two blocks an inch wider than your work when it's clamped up. Make many of these which will also act as cauls. Then place your work on top of the long 2 X 4's (after putting some waxed paper, Visqueen or clear packing tape over them) and drive 2 wedges in so they counter act each other and force the work together in a parallel manner..... 2 opposing but identical wedges make a parallel line. Like this: http://benchnotes.com/Wedge%20Clamps/wedge_clamps.htm


TABLE TOP CLAMP JIG

This is an easy clamping system to glue up a table top or panel, simply attach 1 X 3 cleats to the ends a 2 X 4 with a couple screws. Make up 8 wedges to lock material in place.


BAR CLAMP
As an alternative to the table top clamp above use two strips of wood with holes drilled in each end, slip bolts through the holes and use two shims in each end.



I'll be another to give you some advice on the "advice" you get here...
1. since it's free, you get what you pay for.
2. people are taking their own time to try to help, so it's a 2 way street.
3. don't be offended by well intentioned folks who are trying to help when they see something that "just ain't right" according to their method and procedures.
4. you can NEVER have too many clamps of any size or style.
5. glue ups can be a pain in the arse, without help, a proper surface to clamp on, enough clamps top and bottom to prevent twisting, and the glue is setting too fast,...etc.
6. getting everything ready before hand and staying calm and collected during the process takes practice.
7. wipe off any glue that gets squeezed out before it hardens.. have a wet rag handy and rinse it out frequently in a pail of water. There's also a time period where it will just scrape off easily, usually about 15 minutes or so if you can keep an eye on it.


And on a personal note, if you can tconvince the wife to participate, she will better understand the "pressure" you are under to get the job done in the time frame she has "allowed".... free advice from a divorced guy here.... some couples should not work on the same project together.

Finally, clamping twisted wood is even more difficult than perfectly milled straight and flat wood which is hard enough. Make sub-assemblies when possible, to utilized shorter clamps, but you'll still need some longer ones for the final glue up. The longer and heavier the sub-assemblies are, the more difficult they are to get lined up correctly unless you are well prepared, experience speaking here.

There are glues which give you a longer time interval before they start setting up. http://www.amazon.com/TITEBOND-9104-Wood-Glue-Extend/dp/B0086ACYVY
Best of luck to you.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 05-20-2013 at 03:04 PM.
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post #53 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 08:18 AM
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Here's my two cents. Your present situation can work for you by following some simple procedures. Many members have no choice but to buy lumber at the box stores. Either they don't have the milling machines, or some may not even have a table saw. The point is, if you understand what you get at the box stores, you may be able to deal with it.

For a good glue up, jointing and planing would be ideal, but with box store lumber, you are committed to use the edges as they are, unless you can create a nice straight flat 90 edge that's suitable to be mated to another one done the same way. There are other ways to get that edge, like with handplanes, but getting proficient with them takes some practice.

So, we are back to the edges as they are. Keep in mind that those edges may not be sharp and clean. The corners (lengthwise) may have damages, divots, or could be slightly rounded. So, clamping them together will not give a very tight looking seam. That's what doing the edge work will take care of. In lieu of a handplane, you could mate up the edges across the top, and see where a board may have a high spot, and use a block of wood on the edge to sand it a little at a time and see if it makes for a closer fit.

As for clamps, if the edges are flat and straight, they should mate up with minimal clamping pressure. When I started out, I used mostly pipe clamps. I would find the clamp ends at flea markets for $5 or less each. Garage sales could have them for $5 - $10 with the pipe. So, if you are under a finish schedule, you may not have the time to go shopping around. I would try to make do with what you have.

About your glue up. You should first do a dry fit to see how the mating edges look. If they were jointed and fit without any gaps, you can proceed to the glue up.

Have all your parts, glue and clamps all ready, and laid out. You don't want to be hunting for something at the last minute. It seems at this point it's a simple matter of applying glue and just setting the clamps and cauls and tightening them up.

Clamps, like pipe clamps for instance have a closing pressure from the clamp ends that can exert more pressure on an upper or lower edge of the board other than the center, if not positioned properly. Many of those clamps the ends do not close under pressure absolutely parallel to each other.

When tightening one of those its a good idea to see how the mating edges are reacting as the clamp gets tight. Alternating the clamps position on top of the boards and the bottom of the boards help in creating a straight line of pressure to bring the boards together.

As an example of an improper clamp attachment, lets assume that there is slightly more pressure along the top portion of the edges versus the bottom. As the clamps tighten, the pull can make the combination of boards bow, or curve into a "U" shape. This would be indicative of all the board edges (that may be flat to each other) and the faces take a shape other than horizontal. The other side...meanwhile...will show that the glued edges are not tight but slightly separated allowing the board to tip away from its mating board. Over clamping (too much pressure) can do this.

The whole point to this drawn out description is when setting clamps to the outer edges of a group of boards, insure that they are set to exert centered pressure to the boards.







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post #54 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 09:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prinler
Well I guess I'm just a big screw up. :shrug:
That is not true. You should not get down on yourself. From your comments, you do know more than some of the new people that come here; however, the men giving you the advise are mostly professionals. I'm just a high school teacher. The way I look at it, it depends on the quality that you will be happy with compared to the amount of money you are comfortable at spending. In a perfect world everyone would have all the time and money to build what they want. We do not live in a perfect world and we have to deal with what we have and make choices on what we will be happy with. You should not get down on yourself.

I read this post and my heart sank, thinking about your despair and how hard some of the comments might have sounded, even mine. Sorry. Some were intended to help this project and some were just information for future projects. I talked about needing to drive 100 to the closest HD store or 400 miles to buy hardwood. I live in the middle of nowhere Wyoming in a town of less than 1,000 people. There is another town around ten miles away that has 9,000 people. That's where I work. The next town is 100 miles in any direction. I knew that when moving here. The distance issue was made when we moved here. Barstow CA is another situation. It's not as small as our town or in the middle of no place to think driving long distances would be mandatory for everything.

I'm sorry if you got depressed.

I hope you will stay here at WWT and give us another try to see the kind people that help all the time.

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post #55 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 11:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OnealWoodworking

If I saw one of my guys gluing up that sort of wood with clamps like that - They would get the rest of the day off to 'think about it'...

I would also be fussing because there was no excess glue being squeezed out of the joints...

Everything about that picture said FAIL to me.

I agree with you that is would be much better to wait and do this project with the correct tools for the job.
Apparently nobody ever taught you that there is a nice way to offer criticism, and then there is an ignorant, arrogant way to offer criticism. You seem to always prefer the latter. I feel sorry for "your guys".

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post #56 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 11:50 AM
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Just my opinion....It sounds to me like the original poster is just in a little too much of a hurry to jump into a project. Mind you, I DO understand enthusiasm... that's a good thing... but perhaps he should do just a bit more research, ask a few more questions BEFORE getting too involved in actually working on the project...read and watch videos to learn. This forum is an absolute wealth of information... The majority of folks will do their best to help. Of course, opinions differ sometimes on how to do things, but nevertheless, it's a great place to learn. Stay active.
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post #57 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vursenbach

The way I look at it, it depends on the quality that you will be happy with compared to the amount of money you are comfortable at spending.
I agree with your post. It really does depend on the quality you will be happy with. I drive a Honda with a bad pealing paint job. I wear pants with stains. I'm ok when things don't look perfect as long as they function perfectly. I do believe when all my sub assemblies are glued up I'm going to have a mess of boards glued together. It's only ornamental will only see books and nic naks. I would have used cheap pine if it wasn't all twisted. Oak was my only choice because it was the only wood with no twist. They were all bent in the same direction. Glue process went well on the assemblies but I can see how I missed some slippage. Should have been more diligent but the glue dries soooooo fast here in the high desert. 90f 0% humidity.

Things I have learned:
Get the right wood.
If you can't get the right wood mill your own.
Always use right clamps for the job and alot of them.
Different woods take different clamp pressure.
Different Types of cuts of woods take different clamp pressure.
Don't use to much glue, use the right amount.
I know there is more.

Thanks guys for all your insight and help.

Steve

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post #58 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:01 PM Thread Starter
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Just my opinion....It sounds to me like the original poster is just in a little too much of a hurry to jump into a project. Mind you, I DO understand enthusiasm... that's a good thing... but perhaps he should do just a bit more research, ask a few more questions BEFORE getting too involved in actually working on the project...read and watch videos to learn. This forum is an absolute wealth of information... The majority of folks will do their best to help. Of course, opinions differ sometimes on how to do things, but nevertheless, it's a great place to learn. Stay active.
I really had no choice. My wife is really pushing me to get this done. I picked up another motorcycle to flip and was not focusing on the half installed book shelf lol. She said she was gonna stop cooking or worse if I didn't finish.
So yeah I am in a feverish rush to make up for lost time. It's supposed to look distressed and old. White washed antique white. Shabby shique? Dunno how to spell all that stuff.

I promise guys after this project I will follow everything to the T! Slow down, plan, measure, all of it. The living room is all tore up.

Steve

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post #59 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:11 PM
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"...or worse" sounds pretty awful to me! Lol

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post #60 of 99 Old 05-20-2013, 12:42 PM
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Buying wood in big box store

I Feel your frustration, any married man would. In a town the size of Barstow there surely is a cabinet shop of some kind. After you get it glued up take the counter to the shop. Most cabinet shops are run by real people who have been in the same situation as you. They will most likely run your glued up counter top through a planner for a certain amount of money. I can't imagine it costing you more than $25.00. I'm sure there are a number of people right on this forum who would gladly do it for nothing just to help you out, if you could get it to them. It looks like in one of the pictures that you have already started gluing up, but if you haven't let me just say wait till you have a couple of extra hands to help....will make all the difference in the world. Many times even the most loving of wives will cause you to do things that you are sorry for, you just have to smile and suck it up. If I did my math correctly, even at $5.00 a board foot you should only have at the most $60.00 in that counter top; I'll bet you have much more into it if you purchased 1x2's from Home Depot. Remember, "When you're up to your ass in alligators, it's hard to remember that your prime objective was to drain the swamp!" All you are doing is trying to keep one step ahead of the alligators and sometimes that ain't easy.
Hope you take everything suggested to you as nothing more than people trying to help because many have been in that swamp.

Best of Luck,
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