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post #1 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
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Dressing lumber

K guys I need some advice. It is very hard in central Arkansas to find quality lumber but I might have finally found some. A local outfit sells some really nice breeds; red oak, red cedar, maple, hickory, etc. but heres the deal, they are not dimensional lumber. My question is if I wanna use this stuff for joinery can it be done without a ton of waste and what is the best way to get nice square edges.

The wood is all dried and dressed on two sides usually
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post #2 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 06:24 PM
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What do YOU mean by dimensional? Hardwoods are not sold in designations such as 2x4, 1x6, 2x10... It's in 1/4"s such as 4/4" or 6/4" in random widths.
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post #3 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 06:24 PM
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My preference is to buy rough cut lumber when I can.

I then plane to get to a smooth board. I may get 15/16in out of 4/4 board, I may get 7/8in, but I normally get > 3/4in

Since I do not work from plans, I am able to use whatever thickness I have available.

If you can get stock planed on two sides, go for it.

You should find very little waste in cutting to your width.

Lot's of methods to achieve a good first edge, or you can buy/build a jig. I think there was a thread recently on a jig to straighten a board.

I have started to use my #5 jack plane to true up an edge. I am able to get straight enough for the table saw, but not yet getting orthogonal, but two cuts later it will be.
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post #4 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 06:34 PM Thread Starter
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I apologize for my ignorance...they are hardwood surfaced on two sides so they are 3/4" thickness and random widths. I wanna know how to square them up so I can use them for joinery.
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post #5 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew120
I apologize for my ignorance...they are hardwood surfaced on two sides so they are 3/4" thickness and random widths. I wanna know how to square them up so I can use them for joinery.
No apologies needed! I misunderstood your question, I guess.

If you want perfect lumber you need to joint two edges, one face and one side. Those jointed sides are then your reference edge to square the opposite side. The other side with the table saw and the other face with a thickness planer.

That's the power tool version... I'm guessing you aren't going org hand tools, correct me I'd I'm wrong!
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post #6 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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Okay I think we are slowly but surely communicated here fire medic lol! The boards I'm looking at are s2s with the two sides being the two "faces" or larger measurement. I'm sorry if my vocabulary is lacking here I am indeed a noob.

I have an electric hand held planer and a hand block planer. But my question really was how to I take the two unsurfaced edges or "sides" and make then flat and parallel so they can be jointed. Btw when u say unsurfaced here I mean they have their bark edge not just rough sawn.

Thanks for all your help so far guys! I'm trying to understand I promise.
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post #7 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 08:44 PM
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You might try clamping the boards face-to-face and going at their two edges now combined as one. With your planes, electric- and hand-, make that edge as straight as you can.
Unclamp the two boards and put the edges together. If they are truly straight, they should be ready for glue.
The beauty of this method is that if the edges are not perfectly square with the faces, it does not matter; the error cancels when you open them and place them edge-to-edge.
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post #8 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 08:53 PM
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surfaces, edges and sides

A board has 2 surfaces(the wide face), 2 edges (the narrow part) and 4 sides.

The surfaces get planed flat and parallel, and the edges get planed square to the surfaces. The side of a board could be any part of it, it's more of a descriptor than a technical term, not that we are all that technical here, but there are some preferred terms. bill

BTW "dressing" lumber or timber is probably more a hand tool process than a power tool operation:
http://www.ehow.com/list_6904665_too...ng-timber.html

As far as I know "timber" is the initial stage of making lumber, as in a "stand of timber"....

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; 07-24-2012 at 08:57 PM.
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post #9 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 08:58 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both lol, especially you Bill I understand now, thank you
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post #10 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 09:05 PM
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Most boards have 2 ends, too!

A buddy working in my shop with me kept misnaming dimensions of boards as we were milling them. Turns out he was picturing the finished piece of furniture, calling the length of the board the width, and so-on.
Ya have to come to terms. I told him that 'this is my shop, and we talk about the dimensions of the individual boards in terms of length(long-grain dimension), width(larger cross-grain dimension), and thickness. Not until the piece is finished may you refer to the dimensions of its parts(the width of a chest-of-drawers' top, for example).'

Of course, at times the length is less than the width, then it is called, "short-the-long-way".
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post #11 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 10:03 PM
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Ok, so you want to "straight-line" one edge and cut the other edge parallel... right?

Do you have a table saw? A circ saw?

Do you want to go with hand tools instead? For hand tools, mark a straight line (straight edge and pencil or knife, or a chalk line) and work to that line with either a saw, a drawknife or an plane. Then run a jointing hand plane to finish it while checking with a square to the face of the board. Mark the opposite side with a marking gauge or panel gauge and repeat.
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post #12 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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Perfect fire medic now we are communicating yes I have both those tools and ur description is perfect sir! Thank you
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post #13 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 10:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew120
Perfect fire medic now we are communicating yes I have both those tools and ur description is perfect sir! Thank you
Ok, if you have a table saw, a straight lining sled is easy to build and even easier to use. If you use a circ saw instead you can clamp a straight edge to the board to guide the saw straight.
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post #14 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, if you have a table saw, a straight lining sled is easy to build and even easier to use. If you use a circ saw instead you can clamp a straight edge to the board to guide the saw straight.
Medic you rock, okay do you think i could search around on the forums and find something on making a straight lining sled or is it something that needs to be bought?
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post #15 of 39 Old 07-24-2012, 10:42 PM
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There are some threads here, give the search function a try and google too. You might want to look at a few before you decide on a design that works for you.

Good luck, post some pictures of the jig once you get it built and some pictures of your projects too!
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post #16 of 39 Old 07-25-2012, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firemedic View Post
What do YOU mean by dimensional? Hardwoods are not sold in designations such as 2x4, 1x6, 2x10... It's in 1/4"s such as 4/4" or 6/4" in random widths.
Oh yes hardwoods are sold as dimensional lumber. In fact that is the only way around this area that you can buy them unless you go to some small independent sawyer.

George
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post #17 of 39 Old 07-25-2012, 07:44 AM
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When you purchase dimension lumber it has already been straight line ripped and sized. They charge you for the entire board, then a milling fee and the pieces they rip off they consider free wood and make molding out of. It is much more cost effective to get the entire board. Crooked boards you can cut into short lengths so there is not so much to trim off the edge of the board to straight line rip it. Then to mill the edges you need a jointer. I would try to find one with as long a bed as you can afford.
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post #18 of 39 Old 07-25-2012, 08:17 AM
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The easiest way to straight edge would be to tack (you can use 4d finish nails) on a piece of plywood...can be ¼" to one side so that plywood edge (factory) is riding on the fence. It only has to clear the widest part of the barked edge. Set the fence to cut off the other edge. Then, remove the plywood and turn the board around and cut the bark off the first edge.

You can do this to whichever will be the backside if you are concerned by the little nail holes. You only need about 3-4 nails.



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post #19 of 39 Old 07-25-2012, 08:29 AM
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Track Saw

Hello all, DeWalt makes a great "Track Saw" this is what I use to true up board edges.
Lee
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post #20 of 39 Old 07-26-2012, 02:20 PM
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I have used double sided tape to hold the piece to cut, to a piece of hardboard and it worked for me and no nail holes to fill.
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