finishing the wood...

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by DaveKahler, Jul 14, 2003.

  1. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm going to be putting a ~19x19" tabletop overhang on the top of my sub. This will be entirely for looks, and I'd like a nice hardwood look.

    It's going to have rounded edges and corners. Unfortunately, 19" is too large to buy one solid piece of hardwood, so it looks like I'm going to have to use veneer/laminate/vinyl to cover it.

    So my main question is: how hard is it to get this stuff to wrap around rounded corners seamlessly?

    I was at home depot looking at laminate, and I guess that's hard (non-bendy) stuff, so that's out. I'm unfamiliar with veneer, and straying away from it due to cost concerns.

    I'm thinking of using the PE vinyl stuff for the sides, so I may try to use it for the top too.. but will it bunch at the rounded corners?

    Thanks for any suggestions!
     
  2. John Wes

    John Wes Stunt Coordinator

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    Buy the hardwood and cut just oversized for the length. (OK I know your top is square but follow along.) Say around 19 and a quarter inch.. Buy enough so when you add the width of it..it adds up to over 19 inches.


    Now add up what you need for the width and figure out how you want the top to look as far as grain goes....cut one of the pieces to get all parts at 19 inches....Glue together and clamp. Make sure you have a solid flat surface. Also...for one side, use something very straight to align your pieces too. Then when set up, trim the excess off of the other side...to an exact 19"

    This is a poor mans way of getting it square..

    After the glued up parts are cured and trimmed, it's router time.
     
  3. Dan Wesnor

    Dan Wesnor Second Unit

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  4. Dan Wesnor

    Dan Wesnor Second Unit

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    If you decide to use the lumber, use at least 4 boards and make sure every other board is upside-down (look at the curve on the end-grain) to prevent warping.
     
  5. Allen Ross

    Allen Ross Supporting Actor

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    yeah i am planing on making an Audio Rack Cabinet and plan on using 2X8's or so and joining them with a glue joint, i plan on making it about 16-18 deep.

    I know it will cost a pretty penny for lumber but in this hobby what doesn't? [​IMG]
     
  6. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    Okay, let me make sure I have this straight -

    Get a couple pieces of 12" wide hardwood - cut two pieces at 19" each (actually 18.5 but whatever). Trim second piece to 7". Join them together with some wood glue (trying to line up the grain as best as possible i guess?). Once they are one piece, route the edges as desired.

    I guess the thing I'm worried about with this is the grain not matching well, but it's worth a try.

    Thanks for the speedy responses guys!
     
  7. Allen Ross

    Allen Ross Supporting Actor

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    also make sure that you get the grain going opposite ways, if you look at the end of the board, look at the way the rings (i guess) go you want to alternate, so concave down then concave up. If you did both concave down the wood would have have a tendency to curve down with moisture and age.

    Also try and find some nice Kilem dried aged wood so you won't get the warping i mentioned.
     
  8. Pete Mazz

    Pete Mazz Supporting Actor

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    Be careful how you attach a solid wood top to a man-made substrate. Only use a hard drying glue down the middle along the length of the grain. Use flexible adhesive or mechanical fasteners that have some play on the outer edges, as the solid wood will expand and contract with seasonal changes in humidity.

    Another option is to veneer a square slab of MDF and apply solid wood edges around it so you can route the desired profile w/o hitting the veneer.

    You can veneer over a piece with a round over edge, as long as the corners are square. It requires a little experience and patience, so practice first.

    Pete
     
  9. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Pete has good advice. You can buy a small piece of beautiful 10-mil paper-backed veneer for pocket change compared to buying premium grade hardwood lumber, and you won't have to worry about movement, splitting, etc.
     
  10. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    What would be considered a flexible adhesive? Silicone?
     
  11. MarkDesMarais

    MarkDesMarais Stunt Coordinator

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    I suppose you could attach with silicone. . .the usual way to attach wide table tops would be with a mechanical joint- ie a screw. ;-) If you have access from the bottom of the piece, you make a slotted hole so the screw can move, or you can use whats called a button- basically a little cleat that you screw to the top that rides in a groove in the frame.

    Also, the wider the board, the more likely you will have warpage- when gluing up panels its better to make them from several narrow piece- you might want to stay away from those 12" boards.

    Markd
     
  12. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    Oy.. I think I'm biting off more than I can chew here..

    Does anyone know a good place online that can do custom fabrication of this type?
     
  13. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    I can.. lol jk

    Here's a link to a Dresser that has a fast and easy top.

    All you have to do is buy a pre laminated MDF sheet that has a solid wood veneer pre-glued and sanded flat. Just cut that to size, and add a solid wood molding to the edges. I used a nail gun and glue to put the molding on fast and used maple wood putty to fill in the brad holes.

    If you don't want fancy molding, you can use a simple strip of solid wood and give it a round or something.

    OR...

    You can use solid wood for the whole thing but that'll be harder. You buy the hardwood by the board foot at a lumber store and should cut them oversize, and surface plane them before using clamps and gluing the pieces together. (The grain may not match perfect because you need to rotate every other board as mentioned above)

    After that, you should run it through a surface planer to make the panel the right thickness and flat, and then size it using a table saw.

    Once that's done, a spray on sanding sealer and clear coat can finish it. On the maple, I put on a finish called "The Good Stuff" which turned out very nice and durable.

    I suppose the easiest way out, could be going home depot, asking them to cut you a 19"x19" square out of a laminate sheet of MDF or ply, then using edge tape of the same laminate and putting that on the edges yourself. It may not be round, but it'll look like solid wood.
     
  14. MarkDesMarais

    MarkDesMarais Stunt Coordinator

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    Dave- are you located somewhere really remote? Otherwise, I'm sure your local cabinet shop could handle a job like this. . . by the time you factor in shipping, probably a cheaper option too.. (not less than Chris' HD option above though. ;-)

    Markd
     
  15. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah.. there's a wood speciality shop around here.. I went in there and tried to talk to someone and had no CLUE about anything they were saying (lots of technical terms). I kept telling them I had no bleepin' idea what he was talking about, and he just kept going anyway.

    So I left [​IMG]

    Perhaps I shall try again!
     
  16. MarkDesMarais

    MarkDesMarais Stunt Coordinator

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    Bummer. Maybe bring a drawing? Or see if there is a more sales-minded guy.

    Good luck

    Markd
     
  17. DaveKahler

    DaveKahler Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok, I decided to buy birch (pre-)veneered plywood, and I've cut it to the dimensions I need.

    I just have a couple more glue questions. I'd really like to avoid putting any holes in this if possible, and just use glue. However, if you guys think it just won't be strong enough this way, I'll definitely put some screws in.

    First, I have some edge moulding to attach around the edges of the plywood. Would wood glue work well for this?

    Second, would wood glue or liquid nails work to adhere the tabletop to the mdf box top or does that need some screws? (The overhang of the table top will NOT be used to carry the box - at least not with my permission!)

    Finally, will there be any of the abovementioned problems with the different woods expanding and giving me a headache if they're glued?

    Thanks everyone!
     
  18. Pete Mazz

    Pete Mazz Supporting Actor

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    Yes with using wood glue on both counts. MDF and plywood are both relatively stable and wood glue should be fine for adhering the top to the MDF.

    Pete
     

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