Reply by HammerSmith

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Posted on workbench tops

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414 posts in 853 days

#1 posted 04-10-2020 05:48 AM


I, admittedly don t know enough about wood movement, but I would hope that boards that were used in a bowling alley for 50+ years is mostly done moving…. Especially since it s been sitting in my shop now for close to two years….

- xhaleaj

Small pieces sitting in their new home is plenty of time to acclimate, but it will always continue to move “a little”...

As said above, different species move differently, so that’s always a consideration. But here’s how wood wants to move (*usually)

First of all, the rings will usually try to straighten out as the stick dries. This is how I predict which way the board will want to cup. ...But It depends on where that stick was in the tree, and the stresses that it lived under. Sometimes it will want to cup the other way…. With seasoned wood like you have, I would just trust whatever each board is telling me. After two years, it won’t lie.

The expansion/contraction happens in the pulp, between the rings.. So, as a rule of thumb, I would anticipate that the expansion adjacent to the rings will be twice as much as the expansion parallel to the rings. ... but again, there are no guarantees because each stick is different. And the closer together the rings are, the less this rule applies.

For a work top, I would try to orient the rings vertically as much as possible. Or else I would I would alternate the rings cup-up/cup-down in the center, and save the vertical rings for the edges.

-- ~Jim

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