14 votes
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which direction does wood expand?

Wood is made of fibers. Think of wood as a bunch of soda straws or flexible rubber tubes bundled together. When you add water, the fibers expand to hold the extra water. When it dries, they ...
LeeG's user avatar
  • 8,046
9 votes

which direction does wood expand?

In which direction do wood boards expand? Short answer: across the grain. Wood does move along its length but the amount is negligible and can almost always be ignored. This has been posted ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes
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What is the proper humidity for a shop and how should I achieve it?

There's a lot written about the ideal conditions for the workshop but you have to be careful about the source since the figures quoted aren't as universal as sometimes implied or stated, some sources ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes

Do pocket hole screws allow for proper expansion and contraction in planked table tops?

Do pocket hole screws allow for proper expansion and contraction in planked table tops? It completely depends on where they're sited. They're perfectly acceptable in some places and utterly wrong in ...
Graphus's user avatar
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7 votes

Why does my teak dining table have splits?

The top is attached (at least in part) using buttons, although it's hard to tell what's going on with the cross-bracing framework. Buttons are one of the established ways of allowing for seasonal ...
Graphus's user avatar
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6 votes

If I mill / surface my own wood, will it warp as bad as pre-milled / surfaced wood from the store?

Short answer, yes you can get your wood more straight than you will find at the box stores, and even from your hardwood dealer. It would stand to reason, as you say that they should be able to ...
Jacob Edmond's user avatar
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6 votes
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How can I create a planked wood table top with a plywood core?

I was wondering how I could make a table similar. You can't really, and shouldn't try. Making a table that looks similar is easy enough, but actually laminating solid wood to plywood is inherently a ...
Graphus's user avatar
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6 votes

How can I create a planked wood table top with a plywood core?

There are several issues to address in fabricating such a table top. First, as you pointed out is wood movement. The plywood base will not have any appreciable movement in either direction while the ...
Ashlar's user avatar
  • 8,454
6 votes
Accepted

Do pocket hole screws allow for proper expansion and contraction in planked table tops?

will pocket hole screws allow the table to expand and contract as it is supposed to? I'm assuming you built something that was fastened together along the lines of this (source) where you used ...
grfrazee's user avatar
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6 votes
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Should breadboard ends be quarter sawn or plain sawn?

I'd say go with quarter-sawn ideally. Quarter-sawn wood can be relied upon to be much more stable, but it must be said many a breadboard end has been made from plain-sawn wood that has held up well ...
Graphus's user avatar
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5 votes
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Is this cedar planter box design asking for problems w/ wood movement?

You're right to check about wood movement with the vertical orientation of the boards on the sides, which orients the longitudinal grain horizontally (not vertically as you'd see in traditional chest ...
Graphus's user avatar
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5 votes
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How can I design a large speaker cabinet to come together square and true when my panels aren't flat and my boards aren't straight?

In my view this is a question of "Do I control my materials or do they control me". Your concern that your warped pieces may not meet well is valid. Every project should begin with a plan for what you ...
Ashlar's user avatar
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5 votes
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Can I use pine and poplar together in trim?

Every piece of wood will expand and contract at somewhat different rates. Even two pieces of pine from the same tree will likely be different. Old furniture (like a chest of drawers) used to be made ...
FreeMan's user avatar
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4 votes
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Replacing top on particleboard desk with solid wood - allow for movement? Bad idea?

You are correct to worry about wood movement. A solid wood top it will move along it's width (in this case from the front to the back of the desk) with seasonal humidity changes. Particleboard is a ...
SaSSafraS1232's user avatar
4 votes
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Wobbly table - maybe an easy fix

Based on a wobble going toward the black chair, then yes, the triangular braces between the table top and the legs will resolve the wobble. Smaller braces would be better from a design perspective, ...
FreeMan's user avatar
  • 6,753
4 votes

Is making a breadboard table top using just pocket joinery asking for future problems?

Expansion/contraction-wise, I do not believe that securing of the five boards running end to end will cause a problem. This is basically the same condition as if they were glued together, their ...
Ashlar's user avatar
  • 8,454
4 votes

Is sealing wood with urethane or the like enough to avoid wood movement?

A finish is not a hermetic seal. It may slow wood movement; it will not prevent wood movement. Humidity matters much more than temperature.
keshlam's user avatar
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4 votes

How is it possible to let wood reach equilibrium moisture content?

Just a simple note on your climate data: it is for outdoor. Since most of wooden furniture will sit indoor, you have to calculate for indoor climate. Which - thanks to heating and A/C - will pretty ...
alpintrekker's user avatar
4 votes
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Table top attachment with aprons on only two sides

I wouldn't use Z-clips, they allow minimally for movement in the orientation needed here. Instead you want my favourite metal tabletop fastening option: These are retailed under various names, I know ...
Graphus's user avatar
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4 votes

Are these cracks in this pergola of Nordic Pine wood something to be concerned about for use as a base for synthetic ceramic roof tiles?

Are the cracks something to be concerned about for structural soundness? I want to reassure, and as @bowlturner says in a Comment, large beams do crack/split all the time. Even major structural ...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes

Do pocket hole screws allow for proper expansion and contraction in planked table tops?

In order to determine how and where to fasten wood parts together remember that wood expands and contracts differently in length (tree vertical), radially (from center to outside) and tangentially (...
Ashlar's user avatar
  • 8,454
3 votes

How is it possible to let wood reach equilibrium moisture content?

The theoretical predictions for equilibrium MC are approximations from empirical research done in the 40s. All well and good and they predict the MC of wood when left long enough at the stated ...
Terry Harris's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Do I need to worry about expansion and shrinkage for my table top with wood joined at 45 degree angles?

I'm worrying about the picture-framing and expansion Good eye. There are multiple issues with the design of the table pictured, if you want to make it from solid wood. The first is not obvious, it's ...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes

Shelf movement in a plywood bookcase

My primary question is: am I right about the movement, and if so, is it sufficient to place the fixed shelves in a dado and only glue the front couple inches? Yes and yes. You could also fix the ...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes
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Is sealing wood with urethane or the like enough to avoid wood movement?

Will a solid wood table top still move if it is finished from all sides with polyurethane or some other water resistant finish? Yes. You can, in theory at least, completely seal off wood from the ...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes
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Thick tabletop movement

My main question is this. I plan to use 1 1/2" nominal boards in the middle of the table to reduce weight and material costs. If I miter a frame around the thinner boards with the 3" stock and join/...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes
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FIlling up gaps in an old wooden floor

I'm currently in the process of renewing an old wooden floor. What would one use to fill in the gaps between the planks? Nothing unless there's a draft problem. The gaps aren't generally an issue ...
Graphus's user avatar
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3 votes

FIlling up gaps in an old wooden floor

The old school way I have seen to fill large gaps in wide plank flooring is with rope: 1 Scrape debris from between flooring planks with putty knife or painter's tool. 2 Vacuum floor clean of ...
Jacob Edmond's user avatar
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3 votes
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How to account for wood movement in a curved chest lid

As Graphus stated in comment, the wood members in the arched top will expand and contract while cross grain ends will not. The differences in expansion can easily cause failure in the top. I can ...
Ashlar's user avatar
  • 8,454
3 votes
Accepted

How might I fix wobble in my studio desk build?

Moving from side-to-side like this is called "racking". It involves the piece going out of square. Essentially the joints you have between the top and the legs do not provide sufficient support ...
SaSSafraS1232's user avatar

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