Reply by lumbering_on

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Posted on how do you know a project will hold over time? how to trust my work?

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578 posts in 974 days

#1 posted 10-16-2018 10:36 PM

thank you for all the comments, agree on the dado and the arch, however being a meditation bench the arch would impede leg movement so it s not an option.

@jamsomito , a couple things in your comment that I d like to explore.

First off, I m reading up on end-grain to face grain glue up and why that s a problem, it seems that thinning he glue and having it soak in in a firs pass may fix that. However I don t understand why end grain is an issue with the screw, could you elaborate? I ve ordered “Understanding Wood”, I m hoping it will address some of his basic knowledge I seem to lack.

Second you mentioned dowels being a stronger option than screws. I don t understand this, one is metal, one is wood… how is a 5/8 piece of maple going to take more side-to-side racking force than a piece of metal? I understand that the glue on both ends of the dowel would form a stronger bond than the screw in the end grain, but I still fear that the side racking would just snap the dowels compared to 2 long screws. And I can t put 4-5 in, at most 2. Also according to the interwebs, a dowel joint isn t necessarily stronger than a screw joint, altho the screw ones seem to deflect sooner.

thanks for your insight and pardon the ignorance, trying my best to fill the gap.


- Spikes

I’m not sure where you heard that you could get a good butt joint from applying thinned glue; however,there’s a reason that we have joints such as mortise and tenons, dovetail, and finger. The reality is that it’s not the strength of the glue because you can actually get wood failure with a butt joint. The fact is that the fibers at the end joints are just too weak to produce a strong joint.

Dowels are also much stronger than screws, at least if done correctly. Screws may be harder and stiffer, but that has little do do with how well the joint will hold. Screws will bend and tear the joint, but hardwood dowels will flex and provide more support.

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