Making and Gluing 1/4" skins

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Forum topic by GregD posted 01-09-2011 06:05 PM 1129 views 0 times favorited 1 reply Add to Favorites Watch
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788 posts in 3401 days

01-09-2011 06:05 PM

I am building a stave-core door and I’m looking for suggestions for preparing and gluing the 1/4” skins onto the cores.

It seems pretty clear that I should joint the core & plane it to thickness before gluing on the skins.

I intend to resaw the skins from 8/4 stock. I intend to joint & plane the faces of the stock, and joint 1 edge perpendicular to the faces. I was going to re-plane the sawn face of the stock after each skin is cut. Does that sound about right?

I am less certain about when to plane the sawn surface of the skin. One option is to glue the planed surface of the skin to the core first, and then run the assembly through the thickness planer. Looking ahead, I plan to run all of the stile and rail blanks through the thickness planer one last time to get them all exactly the same thickness right before routing the sticking and coping profiles. That step would take care of surfacing the 2nd skin.

I am really stuck on how to clamp the skins when gluing them onto the cores. The largest skins are 80”x5” (outside stiles) and 9”x37” (bottom rail). For the long stiles I was thinking of using 2 6’ lengths of 2” steel angle iron as lengthwise cauls. These are straight, and stiff enough that I figure I should get adequate pressure distribution even if I only use 4 or 5 clamps lenghtwise. I am concerned about these riding on high spots, so I’m thinking of cutting up some anti-fatigue mats and putting a layer of that stuff between the skin and the cauls. I suspect the standard technique is to used curved cauls, but I’m not sure how much curvature to put in them.

Thanks for your help!

-- Greg D.

1 reply so far

View JuniorJoiner's profile


488 posts in 3704 days

#1 posted 01-09-2011 06:32 PM

you will need to put a cushioning layer between the cauls and the veneer. also add a layer of packing tape on top of the cushion so you don’t glue your cushion to the material.
I don’t think you need to use iron, some flex in the cauls will be ok. lots of clamps though, not 4 or 5 , more like 20 or 30. it would be better if you had a vaccume bag.I wouldn’t crown the cauls either. clamping pressure is angled 45 degrees from the clamp, so thick cauls, and clamps top and bottom.
1/4 inch skin as you call it will function like solid wood if exposed to the elements such as in a door, and may pop off in cold or real heat. so be sure you have good stable quartersawn material, and your substrate is well prepped.
Serious glue too, like titebond III or unibond.
As for technique, I would joint the face, resaw it, glue the jointed face to the substrate, then plane (or joint again).
PS, you should be applying skin to both sides of the substrate at the same time, so the tension is even and dosen’t cup

-- Junior -Quality is never an accident-it is the reward for the effort involved.

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