Table Top Cracking. Help! - Page 2 - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #21 of 45 Old 03-07-2014, 10:11 PM
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Another option if you want to try a complicated solution... Leave the boards attached, and use a straight guide and a circular saw to enlarge the gaps. Bring them out to somewhere around 2-3 inches, cut square and even on both sides. Then fill the space with well dried contrasting wood. A circular saw with a high-end blade can leave you with a joint-ready finish, and with enough care you could probably get a filling wood that would look pretty nice. You'd want to sand the entire top down when you were done to get it all level, and maybe do a clear finish.

It would be quite a lot of work, and I wouldn't want to do it, but I suspect it could be made to look fantastic in the end if you pulled it off.
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post #22 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 02:04 PM
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Kiln-dried conifer lumber of any species is rarely less than 24% Moisture Content which will feel wet and cold to the back of your hand. Conifer. Not hardwood. Hardwood values don't help here. There's a reasonable assumption that the wood will be used in service where MC isn't an issue. Airdried, outdoors, under cover (and not cooked in a shed), the equilibrium MC should settle down to 12 - 14% after a year, stacked and stickered. You can expect movement during that drying process.
Then, indoors, the MC can drop again to as low as 4-6% with even more movement.
Cut the table top apart and clean off the edges, down to bare wood. Those rounded/upset corners don't look so great, even filled. Since you didn't finish the undersides, all is not lost. Give it a year and rebuild.
Then again, you could leave 1/4" crumb gaps. Got any dogs?
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post #23 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 03:08 PM
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Every one of the boards that go across the grain of your top is creating a cross grain joint. Cross grain joints must be constructed in a manner that allow the long grain boards to freely expand and contract as those boards emit or absorb moisture.

Being that you used construction lumber, it was not thoroughly dried before you used it. Therefore those long boards continued to dry and shrink causing the glue joints to fail.

One fix you could do is to first disassemble the top from the support structure. Then rip the boards down the seams and joint them straight. Now edge glue the boards ( you may have to insert one thin board to make up the difference lost to sawdust when ripping. Once the top is glued and dry, mount the top using slotted holes in the cross pieces to allow the top to move with changes in relative humidity.

Inspect all your joints to identify any and all cross grain joints. Develop a scheme to allow cross grain movement and convert those joints.

Howie..........
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post #24 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 04:01 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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the best of intentions here...

You have a stout frame, that's good. You have nice heavy planks, that's also good. Now we have a problem. The planks should be glued together as one part and attached to the frame, the other part, so the wood can expand or in this case shrink as it dries out. That didn't happen.

So, to fix the problem correctly, you should separate the planks from the frame, glue them together as one assembly, and then attach that to the frame. Too much work? Than you will have to live with the gaps OR saw down each one cleaning it up and insert another thin strip of wood. This can be a slip fit, but by taking the rounded edges off from the lumber mill, it may look better. It will still shrink or expand as the humidity changes in the environment however.

Table tops should be rigidly attached only in the center of thew width, not along the entire width. Elongated holes out from the center allow the top to expand or contract without splitting or leaving gaps.

Live and learn as they say, especially in woodworking.

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)
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post #25 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 04:33 PM
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Maybe we should repeat the fix a few more times.





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post #26 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
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so when you do a glue-up and clamp, do they stay together w/just glue?
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post #27 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 05:35 PM
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sure, how many?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cabinetman View Post
Maybe we should repeat the fix a few more times.
You're next.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlenosebob View Post
so when you do a glue-up and clamp, do they stay together w/just glue?

A "proper" glue joint is as strong as the parent wood. Proper meaning, straight, flat and square against straight, flat and square with an even application of glue so it squeezes out just a bit, all along and not over clamped causing a "dry" glue joint where most of the glue is squeezed out.

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)
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post #28 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 05:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlenosebob View Post
so when you do a glue-up and clamp, do they stay together w/just glue?
If the edges are mated well they do.






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post #29 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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All great info for a noob like me, thanks all of you. Last question: If I do (which kind of want to) inlay a 1.5 inch piece of trim after cutting our the crack and then some with a circular saw, shoudl I just glue it in and calmp it, or do that AND nail it?
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post #30 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlenosebob View Post
All great info for a noob like me, thanks all of you. Last question: If I do (which kind of want to) inlay a 1.5 inch piece of trim after cutting our the crack and then some with a circular saw, shoudl I just glue it in and calmp it, or do that AND nail it?
After you have dressed both edges, and want to add a trim piece (like a filler), dress the edges of that piece so they mate with the boards (make it the same thickness as the top), and glue and clamp it to one of the boards. Your next glue up sequence will be the other board(s).





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post #31 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 07:40 PM
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no nails please

Are you going to just create a 1 1/2" gap and the insert a new piece without removing the top and separating the planks? How will the clamps be able to move the planks if they are still screwed down? This is a precision operation, not only to get a perfectly parallel slot, but to get a perfectly fitting insert. It may be above your pay grade, I donno?

You would have to see how much the clamps can move each plank, in my opinion. Sounds like you will need a tablesaw to make the inserts also.

A router would be a better solution with a straight edge guide. That would leave a constant dimension gap, fitting whatever diameter bit you used.

Really, the best "fix" is to take the top off, straighten the edges and reglue them.... I know it's been said before...

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; 03-08-2014 at 08:00 PM.
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post #32 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 07:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlenosebob View Post
All great info for a noob like me, thanks all of you. Last question: If I do (which kind of want to) inlay a 1.5 inch piece of trim after cutting our the crack and then some with a circular saw, shoudl I just glue it in and calmp it, or do that AND nail it?
No More Nails
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post #33 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 08:12 PM
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No More Nails
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post #34 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 08:32 PM
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This is an easy fix.

Cut down the seam, really narrow. Hammer some shims down in the gap created, slather some glue (I like elmer's) all over the cracks, nail down the edges with a 16d ring shank, then re-stain and you're golden.














Not really, although I think that the inlay option would be an awesome touch, and would make a mistake into a conversation piece. I'm with whoever said a router might be the better option, but without removing the top for the clamping, I honestly don't know how you'd do it.

Any way you go, I wish you the best of luck, and all in all, a nicely and solid built first project!
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post #35 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 08:57 PM
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IMO, there is no way to fix this properly in place. If you want to preserve what you have, just run some brown caulk in the crack. Keep the tube for the other cracks that are soon to show up. Even splicing new wood into a machined gap will soon have issues as the Douglas for continues to shrink.
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post #36 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 09:02 PM
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right you are!

The OP didn't want to remove the top...too much work, if I recall, so other "solutions" were proposed, none of which would stop the issue only cover it up cosmetically or clean it up.

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)
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post #37 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 09:11 PM
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I understood the OP to say he wanted a 'fix', not saying he wouldn't remove the top. In order to 'fix', IMO, the top should be removed and the boards dressed for gluing and clamping.





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post #38 of 45 Old 03-08-2014, 09:36 PM
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OP didn't want to remove it.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlenosebob;582888..... [B
I also screwed it on from the top using a countersink bit and filled the holes so it'd be a pain to unscrew it all[/B].......
I suppose you could say he didn't use those "exact" word, but you get his drift....just sayin' PITA, maybe?

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)
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post #39 of 45 Old 03-10-2014, 08:44 AM
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Not sure if you have a jointer or not for the edges, should you decide to remove the top and rip each piece.

If not, and assuming you have a table saw, you can buy a glue line rip blade from Freud.

Much cheaper than a jointer and makes a pretty clean edge for gluing. You will need one straight edge, so you can make a straight line rip jig, I think there is a link floating around here somewhere.

Last edited by Noek; 03-10-2014 at 08:47 AM.
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post #40 of 45 Old 03-10-2014, 11:03 AM
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Hey, You Don't suck, that is some nice construction. Looks very sturdy. I agree with everyone else on cutting it apart and regluing it back together. also as far as wood filler is concerned, I am not a big fan of it for large holes/cracks. I would use epoxy to fill also mix in some saw dust then sand and put your finish on. Epoxy holds a lot better than wood filer. You can also use wood glue and saw dust to make filler. If it is wet wood let it dry out before applying any finish. Good Luck and post some Pics when you complete it.
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