13 votes
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Can you make a small wooden sail boat from cedar?

Yes, provided you use fiberglass, and the technique is often called "cedar strip construction". This method of construction is a very forgiving method of building small boats compared to other ...
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10 votes
Accepted

How can I design a large cherry table with no aprons?

The apron on a four legged table serves a number of functions, and you may not have considered them all. The apron: stiffens the top, helping to keep it flat transfers the load to the legs connects ...
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  • 7,413
9 votes
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Using softwoods for bench tops

So a good question for here would be are softwoods suitable or practicable for use as bench tops? Yes. Obviously softwoods are generally fairly soft and a bench made from softwood is going to be ...
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  • 59.2k
9 votes

8 to 12 mm plywood box joints: brackets vs glue(box joint) vs screws

The box size would be height=400mm, length=800mm, width=400mm, made of 10mm plywood. Say the max load on boxes when used as benches = turned open side down is 200kg and the load when used as a box is ...
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  • 12.1k
8 votes
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How do I calculate the amount of downward force a nail will support?

Expanding to an actual answer. Typically finish nails are, as indicated by the name, for finishing touches. I.e. trim, face materials, etc. They are not structural, and are often used in conjunction ...
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8 votes
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Supporting a level box on an uneven surface

I would build the support frame for under the boxes, just the frame (out of treated 2x4's). Then find your where you want the boxes to rest. Then you scribe your 2x4's with a compass. You get your ...
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  • 15.1k
7 votes
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Is this frame design sturdy enough for a window seat?

In terms of compression strength, I wouldn't want to park a big car on top of it - but even a couple of drunken teenagers jumping up and down should be fine. As others have commented, racking side-to-...
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6 votes

Where should the trademark be placed on a baseball bat?

I've just done a bit of research (OK... I did a google image search, but the results seem to be consistent) and it seems like the logo is always burned into / painted onto the same part of the bat, in ...
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  • 3,809
6 votes
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Where should the trademark be placed on a baseball bat?

Is there any truth to breaking a bat by hitting on the trademark Yes there is. Traditionally the logo or label is located in a specific orientation to the grain in the wood, leading to the guideline ...
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  • 59.2k
6 votes

Should I orient the cupped sides toward each other when laminating boards?

Honestly if the glue-up is done right I don't think this is going to matter much, or at all. Following on from the same principle as sprung-jointed edges (where a very slight hollow is deliberately ...
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  • 59.2k
6 votes
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Is there a reference for how much weight a dowel rod can support before breaking?

While a 1/4" pair of dowels would likely be able to hold a guitar if left alone, a good twisting bump might break them off. A 1/2" dowel would be plenty, and I think a 3/4" dowel (at 3-4") would be ...
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  • 15.1k
6 votes

Strong method for bottom of a box

I think the most sturdy way to put a bottom in a box is to capture it with grooves on the sides. With a rabbet the glue joint is holding the bottom on, while in a groove the structure of the wood ...
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5 votes
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Make a bunk bed

Is spruce wood a good choice ? Or maybe I should choose a stronger one ? Wood species Spruce is one of the strongest woods in the world for its weight. Beds of a similar design to yours have been ...
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  • 59.2k
4 votes

Can you make a small wooden sail boat from cedar?

If you're looking for a simple project you might consider a skin on frame canoe or kayak. Cedar is a good choice for skin boats and actually works better when it's 'green'. Take a look at skin-boats....
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4 votes

Make a bunk bed

I am personally not a bit fan of spruce (or pine, or anything the like) for anything but a tool shack in my garden, or similar. But sure enough, spruce is quite resilient. You can most certainly ...
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  • 3,825
4 votes

Using softwoods for bench tops

I don't see why not. Some of it depends on what kind of abuse you expect it to take and if you expect it to stay 'pretty'. One of my bench tops I made out of 2x6's left over from building the garage....
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4 votes

Shelf made of 1x2 pine boards. Stable?

The weakest part of the design is how your substantial load is being carried to the uprights. There's not that much you can do for those joints as drawn... I'd suggest you add actual 1x2 members ...
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4 votes

Shelf made of 1x2 pine boards. Stable?

Each shelf is capable of holding the load that you are intending with shearing or sagging. Where this design fails is in racking, both front to back and side to side. Traditional shelves are built ...
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  • 1,838
4 votes

How might I design a "quick-breakdown" feature to allow easy assembly and disassembly of this floating beds frame supports?

For starters I would look into half lapping the interior cross members. This way you can have just two supports running the length of the bed, as opposed to ten small pieces running between each cross ...
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  • 1,838
4 votes

Strong method for bottom of a box

As SaSSafraS1232 mentioned making a box for the purpose you stated is much like making a drawer. 1. Groove all sides, front and back of the box/drawer, then glue the sides to either the front or back ...
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4 votes
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How to stop cat shelf split

That's a cantilever design It looks like someone (or somecat) has put more weight on it than it is capable of supporting (was it located somewhere a child might have been tempted to try it?) After ...
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4 votes
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Endgrain screw withdrawal force

The resistance of screws to being pulled free has been studied widely and for a long time (1920s or earlier), both by individual companies testing their own and competitor products and by government ...
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  • 59.2k
4 votes
Accepted

Best way to scab joists for bridge

Like you, I have built a great deal, but I am not a structural engineer so my recommendations are more intuitive than definitive. I would recommend extending the length of the scabs as much as ...
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  • 7,854
4 votes

Is support on three sides of a long poplar bookshelf enough?

Is support on three sides of a long poplar bookshelf enough? Yes, but see note. Unless you expect to heavily load only the front edge of the shelf (seems unlikely!) it should be OK. Shelves ...
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  • 59.2k
4 votes
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Which shelf holds the most weight

If this is going into drywall the weakest point is probably the attachment of the wall flange to the wall. With regards to this joint design B is substantially better than design A, since in A the ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Do I need the front apron piece in a desk with a 3/4" plywood top?

3/4 plywood over a 3' span is likely to be fine as long as she does not sit or climb up on it, or leave heavy objects near the edge for long periods of time. I am sitting at a desk, as i right this ...
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4 votes

Building a sideways bookshelf

Your main issue is the large span for the shelves. Plugging in your dimensions into The Sagulator gives a sag of over 1/4" with pine, a tad under 1/4" with oak and around an inch for ...
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  • 3,096
4 votes

Pull-Up Bar - Wooden dowel - 1.25" actual diameter

TL;DR: Use a metal pole. Commercial dowels are not a good material to use for pull-up bars. The supports for the metal pole can be wood. I'm going to take the unpopular opinion and suggest that random ...
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  • 6,194
4 votes

Strengthened leg miter joint with spline [key]

The plans call for a domino or dowel, plus a spline for added strength. Just so you know, this is probably overkill. Many such legs are reinforced by just one means, not two, and the tables survive ...
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  • 59.2k
4 votes

Wood grain direction vs. strength

It does not matter here as loads will be too small to stress supports. With screw passing through wood no noticeable difference A to B. Screws and fixing in wall under most strain, not support piece. ...
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