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Thread: Big table....big boards...

  1. #1

    Big table....big boards...

    Hi all - Im building a 112 x 44 walnut dining table with 10/4 boards for the top. Im having a heck of a time running the 7-11 boards through my 8 jointer an 12 planner. Im using the method of partially flattening 8 of the face and then running through my planner using a base that supports the 8 part of the board that was flattened.

    Problem is is the boards are so heavy and rough that Im getting a lot of undulations or a wavy pattern on The faces.

    Wondering if anyone else has been through this with a 8 jointer and benchtop (dewalt) 12 planner.

    or am I just resigned to expect some heavy hand planing when Im all done with my glue ups?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    48,028
    Do the best you can and then get the table top surfaced on a wide-belt sander. TOTALLY worth the small cost. ($25-35 with the folks I use) Handling long material like that is going to be tough on most equipment...
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    1,117
    You think they are heavy now, just wait. That top will weigh about 250 pounds. Mark the boards for orientation and then rip them to less than 8". You won't take out much wood with the kerf, and the color and grain will stay pretty close to original. There are a lot of seams anyway, why not just a few more?
    Last edited by Richard Coers; 02-15-2019 at 9:41 PM.

  4. #4
    So Jim you are sayIng to find a local shop with a wide belt sander and call it a day?

  5. #5
    find someone with proper machines to machine them

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Lake View Post
    find someone with proper machines to machine them
    Or rip everything down to 7 1/2" or split wider ones. Yeah, I know, everyone wants wide tables with wide boards.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Northwest Ohio
    Posts
    67
    Why do you want a 2 1/2-inch thick top?

  8. #8
    ripped in half they are still a bit much for those machines. I did that a few times even that size, unless you rig up proper support all around and have experience you wont get great results.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    409
    There comes a point where it's easier to take the tool to the work. I would get the set of handplanes out and get a good workout.
    Last edited by Sean Nagle; 02-16-2019 at 12:08 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    3,376
    My kitchen table is made with the boards going the other way. Don't remember why I did it that way 15 years ago, but it looks fine and no one has said anything about it, other than how nice it is.
    And yeah, why 10/4?

  11. #11
    I agree with ripping the boards to less than 8. In addition to allowing you to run them on your jointer without a sled, you will likely end up with better grain matching - assuming you have extra boards.

  12. I personally would not rip the boards. I have only a 6" jointer (planning to get a much larger one in the coming months) and am working on a 6' x 3' dining room table using 12/4 Ash. The legs will join to the table with finger joints - no apron. I have already made a smaller table, as a prototype, using this technique and it came out beautifully. I just completed a 5' x 2' butcher block style countertop with 10/4 cherry. All of these projects required jointed very large, heavy pieces on a jointer that's really too small. I ran the edges of the pieces through the jointer best I could using roller supports, etc...and the jointer did a sort-of OK job - not great. But it was straight enough to run through through the table saw with a good quality blade and get a near-perfect edge for glue-up. For the faces, I used a long straight edge to help get a rough idea of where the high points were. I then used a combination of patience, a power hand plane. and a long wooden jointing hand plane. The faces were not perfect after that, but certainly much better and good enough to run through the thickness planer to get the other side reasonably flat and even. I then used a festool domino in all the pieces to help with alignment during glue-up. Once all the pieces were glued, I used my long jointing plane to take down the high spots on both sides. I then followed with 80 grit on the belt sander, then higher grits with the random orbit sander. The end results have been good. But, boy, a bigger jointer would certainly make this way easier...

  13. #13
    Thanks all...

    Ive been using a method the wood whisperer recommends where you joint the 10-11 board and are left with a raised edge for the part of the face that does fit over the cutter head. So its like making a 8 wide very shallow rabbet. Then on my planer I have a 8 flat board that supports the jointed face. Once I get the other side flat I flip over and plan away the strip that was left from jointing.

    This is works great with reasonable boards but Im getting poor results with these big boards. I just hit YouTube and see that I havent removed the rabbet extension on my jointer. I think after a few passes that is raising the board and giving me bad results. Im also going to add a mdf board to my planner bed to give me a bit more support when processing.

    im sure Ill still need some hand planning post glue up...or i may look for a local shop that can process this final glue up for me. Welcome suggesting for the glue up. Do I need cauls or something to keep it flat during glue up? Should I glue up 2 boards together separately then glue those 2 together?

  14. #14
    I think your pushing on rope trying to do this with existing equipment. I would follow the advice of using an outside shop to get the boards flat both before and after glue-up

    If you need to do this in your shop, I think hand planing to get the jointed side close should help a lot, as suggested above

    Also, it sounds like a fun project. Good luck!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    1,117
    I'm still curious how you plan on handling the glued up top in your shop, and getting it into you dining room? Just flipping it over is going to take 3 people. You must have younger friends than I do. At my age, a gathering of my friends always turns into a discussion of what pains we have on that day!

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