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post #1 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 07:02 AM Thread Starter
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Start over?

Newbie here. I'm building a huge arbor for my yard. Everything worked out well until I got to the curves. I cut the curves out OK, but I didn't notice in the plans that the curves required a short 3 1/2 inch straight section on the bottom that attaches to the beams. Should I simply add the 3 1/2 inch straight section as you see in the photo (for illustration purposes only). I could attach them with dowels or biscuits or screws then attach the entire section with metal brackets (or any other ideas out there). Or should I just recut the curves correctly with the straight piece. I'm concerned with weight and strength. I'm in Florida and we have high winds sometimes and almost surely my wife will foster vines throughout the arbor. I am in isolation so I have the time and the wood. It's been a good learning experience. Thanks for all suggestions.
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post #2 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 08:18 AM
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How thick is the wood, John? I can't tell from the photo. Is it thick enough to dowel? Can you use a backer board to join the two, let it overlap a couple of inches onto both pieces? If so, you could use SS screws and TB III glue to join the two.

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post #3 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 08:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response and the options. Pine wood. 1 1/2 inches thick. If I use a backer board would it be as strong or stronger? I'm mostly concerned with strength.
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post #4 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 08:55 AM
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It would be pretty strong. All it would take is a 3/4" board, or even 1/2". With glue and SS screws that would be a pretty strong joint. Or you could half-lap the joint on your 3 1/2" piece and forgo the backer board. A 2" half-lap would be pretty strong and would be even stronger if you did that and a backer board.

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post #5 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 09:14 AM Thread Starter
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Oh man! A half lap with a backer board is a great idea. It'll give me some experience in making a lap joint (never did it and I was looking forward to trying it) and it sounds very strong. I probably sound too enthusiastic for something so simple, but I'm looking to learn. David, thank you very much. I'll post a photo when I finish.
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post #6 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 09:39 AM
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If this is going to be a huge arbor with vines hanging and subject to high winds, I would make a new piece.

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Retired woodworker, amongst other things, Sold full time cruising boat and now full time cruising in RV. Currently in Somerville, Tx
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post #7 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 09:43 AM
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Here is a similar idea, perhaps different in execution.
First, glue the two parts together (as shown in your photo) with as good a butt joint as you can reasonably do. For speed, Bob Smith CA glue and accelerator will work well, or other slower glues.
Next with a router or similar cut a groove (dado) 1/2” deep and 1/2” wide or larger through the seam, and a couple more cuts to either side, finally glue a 1/2” thick x ~1 1/2” wide ‘Dutchman’ into the resulting void. Make sure the grains are all in the same direction.
Sort of a loose lap joint.
For more strength flip it over and do the other side as well.
Sand smooth and paint.
If you have several of these to do this workflow will probably be faster than lap joints.
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post #8 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 10:43 AM
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At the very least one thing I would do is to paint every joint inside and out with a good quality exterior paint or stain before assembly. Otherwise you'll be fighting the elements forever and be doing repairs pretty much every year. Last time I checked Florida gets a bit of rain on a regular basis. Unless you're using some super rot resistant wood that costs you a few thousand bucks per board foot paint will be your savoir. Ok, maybe I exaggerated the cost of the wood a tad, but it can get up there in price..
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post #9 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 11:27 AM
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I’m curious, why does the design require that extra 3-1/2”? Can’t the arch just sit on top as it is?
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post #10 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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The reason for the 3 1/2 inch straight piece is to house a fascia board all around to hide the edges. I considered just getting rid of it and sitting as you suggested, but as I said I'm learning so I want to construct it as is. I have attached the plans.
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File Type: pdf Rounded Arbor with a Gate.pdf (378.5 KB, 16 views)
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post #11 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 11:42 AM
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John G. ~ LOL never mind on the photo - we posted at the same time.
this project comes up here from time to time.
did you purchase the plans or were they free ?

here is the project that may help with any future questions:

Start over?-arbor-1.png

Start over?-arbor-2.png

.

I am a painter: that's what I do, I like to paint things.

Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 05-20-2020 at 11:50 AM.
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post #12 of 13 Old 05-20-2020, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks John. I got them free. I have this image. The posts are in, but I screwed up the curves. Im trying to decide whether to recut them or try to fix them.
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post #13 of 13 Old 05-21-2020, 08:02 AM
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Nobody would ever notice and it may hold up fine but I know me and I would re-do it.....would bother me to no end.
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