Warped Oak Slats - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 03-17-2012, 12:52 AM Thread Starter
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Warped Oak Slats

I got a bunch of Oak slats and about 1/2 of them are warped (not very true at all). They are about 1/4 to 3/8 inch thick.

Is it worth reclaiming these ones or should I just toss them? Is it hard to steam them back into shape? Can I soak em in water and use my clothes iron on them?--lol!

Hrm, maybe I should of posted this in Milling..
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post #2 of 8 Old 03-17-2012, 02:25 AM
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You're asking a bunch of woodworkers if you should throw away wood? Horrible idea. I have pieces the size of my thumb that if someone tried to toss they would get a finely sharpened Marple chisel through the thigh. In all seriousness there are methods to flattening it back out. A steam box would work, but I'm guessing you might not have access to one. You can also stack it and place heavy things on it but that could take a very long time to flatten out. Another option is to use it when you need small pieces you can just cut from it where straight may not be very important.

Good luck man and I hope someone else has a better solution for you.
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post #3 of 8 Old 03-17-2012, 08:12 AM
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If it were me unless you can foresee laminating them to a thicker board to stabilize them, I would pitch them. You could also laminate three pieces together to make a 3/4" board. Usually just doing that the boards work against each other to where it straightens them out but sometimes you have to sandwich them between two heavy timbers to make them straight.

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post #4 of 8 Old 04-09-2012, 11:46 AM
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Wood that is warped and has been for some time will never flatten out properly. The cell walls take on a set and even with steaming will not dry flat. Unless you have a specific project where the wood can be used as it, I would just use it as kindling.

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post #5 of 8 Old 04-09-2012, 12:11 PM
where's my table saw?
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Originally Posted by woodgeekess View Post
I got a bunch of Oak slats and about 1/2 of them are warped (not very true at all). They are about 1/4 to 3/8 inch thick. .

Depends on the "warp".
If they are twisted they are probably shot.
If they are just curved in an arc on the thin edge, glue them together, with curves opposing, and see what happens.
If they are curved on the flat edge, you can possibly saw out a straight portion.
This would be more of a "labor of love" than a woodworking project, since the actual amount of wood being salvaged is minimal. JMO
Sometimes a curve can work in your favor to make an arch topped lid for instance like this:


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 #6 of 8 Old 07-01-2012, 10:41 PM
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save it for splines, free tenons, etc.
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post #7 of 8 Old 07-01-2012, 11:40 PM
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I suspect that if you can bend wood using steam, you can straighten it with steam also. That said, I would save them for projects small enough that you can get adequately straight pieces by sawing and planing.
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post #8 of 8 Old 07-22-2012, 08:12 PM
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You could design something around the imperfection of the stock....might come up with a very nice piece.
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