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Thread: How to bend wood like this - Outdoor furniture project

  1. #46
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    Try an automotive or boat upholsterer.

    Last time I needed to bend some oak I went to a mill that mills anything he can get cheap and makes pallet wood and crane mats. He sold me very green oak for a song. Bends best the same day it's milled.

  2. #47
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    For small stuff, a form and 2" truck straps work well. The laminations need to be thin enough to easily bend on the required radius. Padding inside and outside the work piece needs to be adequate to spread the force of the clamps evenly.
    Last edited by William Hodge; 03-07-2024 at 5:54 AM.

  3. #48
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    Wood arrived yesterday. Busy making the forms now. Using 3/4"MDF. OMG the weight of 8 of these on top of each other to accommodate the 5-1/2" wide wood that needs to be bent will require help, to say the lease.

    I made the curved portion of the form out of 1/2" MDF using a Carter Accuright circle cutting jig that I had on my bandsaw. What a PIA. Shoulda just made a trammel with my router. Probably would have come out a little smoother too, though mine will work. Killing me the waste of MDF when I'm done. Not that I ever use MDF, but still taking a ton to make the bending form.

    I couldn't lift or transport 4x8 MDF sheets, so I'm going to make this out of 2x4 MDF sheets and domino them together.

    Now I need to build a larger steaming box than I have, and probably get a larger steam generator. Lots and lots of work to do. Any good suggestions for steam generators. Somewhere I read that wallpaper steamers, whatever they are, are good.
    - After I ask a stranger if I can pet their dog and they say yes, I like to respond, "I'll keep that in mind" and walk off
    - It's above my pay grade. Mongo only pawn in game of life.

  4. #49
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    When you make the layers for the forms, make one that's "da bomb" and use that to template route the remaining layers for a perfect form.
    --

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

  5. #50
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    So are you using smaller strips or trying to bend solid?

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by jack duren View Post
    So are you using smaller strips or trying to bend solid?
    I think it will have to be smaller strips. I can't imagine being able to bend 1-1/2" white oak. And I couldn't get air dried, so it's kiln dried.

    Still not sure the maximum thickness I can bend successfully. Obviously, the thicker the laminations, the less work I'll have to do.

    Any guesses as to whether or not 1/2" white oak can be bent successfully? 3/4"??
    - After I ask a stranger if I can pet their dog and they say yes, I like to respond, "I'll keep that in mind" and walk off
    - It's above my pay grade. Mongo only pawn in game of life.

  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    When you make the layers for the forms, make one that's "da bomb" and use that to template route the remaining layers for a perfect form.
    I agree. That's the game plan. I'll bandsaw outside the line by 1/8" or so, then pattern rout the remainder.
    - After I ask a stranger if I can pet their dog and they say yes, I like to respond, "I'll keep that in mind" and walk off
    - It's above my pay grade. Mongo only pawn in game of life.

  8. #53
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    You’ll probably have go to 3/16. Depending on width you may need 1/8..

    Air or kiln dried makes a difference

  9. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by jack duren View Post
    You’ll probably have go to 3/16. Depending on width you may need 1/8..

    Air or kiln dried makes a difference
    Ouch. Lots and lots and lots of laminations.

  10. #55
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    Is what it is..1/8x 6=3/4 bend all at once..
    Last edited by jack duren; 03-08-2024 at 12:36 PM.

  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by jack duren View Post
    You’ll probably have go to 3/16. Depending on width you may need 1/8..

    Air or kiln dried makes a difference
    I agree with this.
    --

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

  12. #57
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    I need 1-1/2" final thickness, so at minimum 8 pieces, at most 12. Lotta gluing of curved parts. Oh well...
    - After I ask a stranger if I can pet their dog and they say yes, I like to respond, "I'll keep that in mind" and walk off
    - It's above my pay grade. Mongo only pawn in game of life.

  13. #58
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    Yes, it requires a lot of layers, but the end result, if you are careful, will be outstanding.
    --

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

  14. #59
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    Making the forms out of 3/4" mdf. Had several people helping load the MDF and the truck I had to hire to move the 4x4 half sheets of MDF. Lots of work just to get 8 4x4 sheets to the workshop.

    OMG the amount of MDF dust that is generated by pattern routing the edge even with my Festool router hooked up to its dust collector, both Jet Air cleaners going, and my 3M P100 respirator tightly around my face.

    Staggering amount of dust EVERYWHERE. I don't know how people can work with this stuff. I very rarely do, and now I remember why. Working with it without serious respirators is such a recipe for lung disease. Even after vacuuming everything I can see after each rout, I will be finding deposits on everything and vacuuming more and more for weeks. Ouch.
    Last edited by Alan Lightstone; 03-11-2024 at 10:33 AM.
    - After I ask a stranger if I can pet their dog and they say yes, I like to respond, "I'll keep that in mind" and walk off
    - It's above my pay grade. Mongo only pawn in game of life.

  15. #60
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    Yea, when I have to use it I use a N95 rated respirator and turn on the extractor fan. When I'm done, I just leave the shop for a few hours and let the fines get blown outside (as much as possible)... and I'm still vacuuming in the end. I hate dealing with it.
    ~mike

    happy in my mud hut

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