Reply by JBrow

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Posted on keeping small table flat

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1368 posts in 1550 days

#1 posted 09-14-2016 01:38 AM


I would think that plywood cleats would do little to counteract the forces that would cause the table tops to cup. If the top starts to cup, I suspect the forces acting on the top would easily overcome any resistance to cupping that might be offered by the plywood cleats. However, if the fastening system incorporated into the metal base prevents the wooded top from expanding or contracting, then incorporating plywood cleats that would be fastened to the metal base while allowing the top to expand and contract against the cleats would probably be a good idea.

I have not used Enviro-Tex 2 part pour on finish so I looked it up and can appreciate your reluctance in applying the finish on the underside of the table. However, by my way of thinking, the upper surface of the top will be fairly impervious to moisture. If the bottom surface of the top is not similarly coated, moisture could enter the underside of the top and cause underside surface fibers to swell which would encourage the top to cup (concave on the upper surface of the top). In the winter when the air is dry, more moisture could leave the underside of the top than from the upper surface causing the underside surface to shrink and encourage the upper surface to belly upward (convex on the upper surface).

As a result, in an effort to reduce the likelihood that the top will cup or belly, applying at least one thin layer of the Enviro-Tex 2 part pour on finish would be, in my view, good insurance. If for some reason, coating the underside of the tops with Enviro-Tex finish cannot be done then multiple layers of gloss polyurethane might work.

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