Saturday, March 3, 2007

Bottom Planking phase ONE

Today I bought a few 30 fender washers (big washers, small holes) at a whopping 0.07 dollars each. Because my stations were only 24.5 inches wide I couldn't put my 1/4 inch runners on top of the rocker table and decided to put them on the sides and figured the most secure would be with the fender washers.

NOTE: Always drill pilot holes for screws! I learned a long time ago that sheetrock screws will split your wood, take the extra time and save wood!

My goal today was to get the bottom planking taped up and flipped over ready for the gluing with Titebond III. But the planks were longitudinally warped so what I did was wedge them in with shims, which was difficult. I learned that I needed to clamp down strapping across the tops of the planks at the stations as the planks pop up. I only have 4 clamps so I could only use two strappings at the stations fore and aft. I thought to myself that the tape is just gonna come up as the planks pull away from each other because they are warped and that the most tape in the world will not keep those suckers butted up against each other. And that could be a bitch if I did get them taped up, flipped it over then butted them up again as the tape might bunch up in the butted ends and gluing would be complicated more so. (( the purpose of the tape is really to just keep the glue from dripping out of the butt joints))

So, my idea: Wet towel and Clothesiron the entire top surface of the planking hoping that I can eliminate some of the warping. I did it.....3o minutes fore, 30 minutes aft (four foot towel). It's still shimmed up. The planking bellied up as it was wet, but is subsiding as it dries. Tomorrow I will tape up the seams and take out the shims AFTER I GO CLAMP SHOPPING AT THE THRIFT TOOL SUPPLIES PLACES!!! I miss east coast flea markets!!!!

I'll let you know how the steaming worked


Doc said...

Make sure you can get it out of the basement Fish...tight corners...long boards...big frustrations...

Looks very, very cool...


brad said...

It is often the case that the planks get some bow in them (i.e. when lying flat, they curve one way or the other).

Great idea using the iron and wet cloths... Usually, unless the bow is more than 3/16" or so, you can clamp the planks without it tho. This would not be true if you were building a tabletop, but the cedar is flexible, and only a quarter-inch thick.

When I have this problem, I clamp the planks (pinning them in place with spring clamps and strapping first) and apply the tape to the seams, with some tape going all the way across the planks in three or four places as well (right angle to the seams) to hold the bowed planks in place. When you remove the clamps to get the glue into the seams, they usually don't spring very far, so when you re-apply the clamps all is well!