Novice needs a bit of help - joining + stain - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 12-05-2013, 12:26 AM Thread Starter
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Novice needs a bit of help - joining + stain

Hi All,

First post here. First piece of furniture I am building (though that will become obvious as you read on). My wife found a dining table she liked and instructions online, so I got busy. Without ripping/jointing the edges of the 2x10x8's (I know, lesson learned), I glued and clamped them together, then put cross pieces underneath with dowels and glue through to hold them together. I cleaned/sanded off all of the squeeze out. They actually fit together decently. It is supposed to be "rustic" anyways so a little imperfection is OK.

Here is the problem:
Because the lumber comes with rounded edges, there are little grooves between the boards. This is fine, but there is also a little line of glue that I was unable to get with the sander. I haven't stained yet, but when I do, I'm guessing I will have yellow lines down the middle of my dark brown table top.

What can I do? The wood is white pine. If I fill the grooves with stainable wood filler, it would still be noticeable, right? I'm basically nearing the end of my free time, so I'm not too interested in cutting it apart and starting over.

I greatly appreciate any advice you could offer.

Thanks for reading this short novel!
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post #2 of 6 Old 12-05-2013, 07:23 AM
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I would start over again rip it apart then joint the edges and re glue it. This would take care of the glue lines you are seeing. I think no matter how you finish the top the glue lines will show up.

Also when you glued and doweled the other board on the bottom you created a cross grain joint that won't let the top expand and contract with moisture changes. Over time you top will have all kinds of trouble by doing that.
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post #3 of 6 Old 12-05-2013, 07:44 AM
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I agree with Paarker. The visible glue line is only one of your problems. Gluing a support board across the grain could present a problem if there was any movement issues.

Assuming you don't want to cut them apart, any fill in the grooves would be an obvious fix. You could use a "V" joint router bit and run a shallow pass to create a cleaner line. If nothing else, use a small artists brush and a paint that would be compatible with your topcoats, and paint out the glue line.

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post #4 of 6 Old 12-05-2013, 09:15 AM
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+1 you need to cut apart and re-do the joints. I know not what you want to hear.

You are using construction lumber. This is likely higher moisture content than your shop and especially the place where you will use the table.

The wood will loose moisture over time. A finish will slow down the moisture change, but it will happen over time.

The cross pieces being glued underneath will prevent the wood from what we call moving - changing dimensions with moisture.

The change in dimension is across the grain, not the length.

If the wood is glue to prevent the movement, it will eventually crack. Many posts on the forum where folks show such issues and they all want a quick fix without taking things apart. Quick fix for such issues rarely exists.

So you can do the work now, or need to do more work later.

Take it apart, joint the edges of the boards and attach the underside cross members with lag bolts and elongated holes in the cross members to allow for the movement.
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post #5 of 6 Old 12-05-2013, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Dang. OK, well I may try cabinetman's suggestion for right now due to a lack of time (I am in medical school and was on break), then rebuild the table top when I have more free time. Plus I don't have a table saw (just circular and miter), so not sure how I would cut the top apart nicely.

Do any of you have any pointers to websites that have a good, detailed instructional on what Dave described? I want to make sure I do it right next time.

Thanks again!
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post #6 of 6 Old 12-06-2013, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Birchum View Post
I don't have a table saw (just circular and miter), so not sure how I would cut the top apart nicely.

Thanks again!
To cut the tabletop clamp a straight edge, 2x4, anything straight to the table to use as a guide for your circular saw, cut will be just as straight as a table saw, just not quite as easy. Make sure you support both sides of the cut to prevent it breaking off or racking towards end of cut.
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