Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The pressing issue of matched aprons

In my last episode, I created the curved front apron out of maple. However, my plan for the carcass of my hall table is for cherry. So in this episode I explain how I made my own veneers and then used three different clamping or pressing techniques to apply the veneers to all four table aprons. I could have made life a lot easier on myself if I had about twice as many clamps as I do, proving once again the axiom that a woodworker can never have too many clamps.

Some of you may have also heard my recent discussion on the Fine Woodworking Shop Talk Live podcast where I mentioned a recent mistake I had made with a vacuum press. While the footage in this video shows the "after" scenario, my first attempt at veneering my side aprons found me struggling with a hole in the vacuum bag. A simple piece of tape fixed the problem, but remind me how important it is to do a dry run of ANY kind of clamping technique before the glue gets involved.


Right click to download the HD version of this video

7 comments:

Rusty Burwell said...

Rob- great post and timely for me....I'm doing some veneering. It looks like you were using Titebond Original - any specific reason you went with that? thanks, Rusty

Rob Bois said...

Hey Rusty. I will use a cold press veneer glue for bent laminations where glue creep can be an issue. But for this type of veneering I actually don't mind a little flexibility in the glue joint.

Rusty Burwell said...

Rob- thanks....I just got a Roarockit - have you had any issues with yours? Looks like its good for the biceps! Rusty

Unknown said...

Love this project! A couple questions. I thought you had to veneer both sides to keep moisture loss equal? Do you plan on edge banding the bottom of the curved apron?

Rob Bois said...

Rusty, aside from a small hole in my vacuum bag, I've not had any issues with the Roarockit. At some point I'll probably buy a proper vacuum press, but this is such a great bang for the buck. As for the question about veneering both sides, I personally think that practice is just a great myth of woodworking. I never veneer both sides and have never had a board warp or bow on me. And I haven't ever seen a good logical explanation why anything bad could really happen. In my case, I did check that QS cherry and flat sawn maple have almost the exact same wood movement properties, so I simply can't think of a rational reason my thin veneer could ever effect my 2" thick substrate. But if anyone finds any evidence otherwise, I'd love to see it.

rburwell said...

Rob- thanks....re: veneering both sides, I have veneered a number of thin plywood panels for drawer and tray bottoms, and have had the occasional bow there, I think because of how thin - 1/4 inch or less. With the much more substantial boards you're working with, I can't imagine a problem. I'll ask you again in 150 years how the skirts held up!

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