All Replies on flattening end grain cutting boards

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flattening end grain cutting boards

by leftcoaster
posted 11-28-2018 05:35 PM

9 replies so far

View LesB's profile


2602 posts in 4296 days

#1 posted 11-28-2018 05:56 PM

You can try a belt sander but it might be harder to keep the surface flat. Same with a rotary sander.

I saw in the catalog that CMT has a new type of router bit that is made for this sort of thing and would probably reduce the time involved.

-- Les B, Oregon

View Rich's profile (online now)


5887 posts in 1443 days

#2 posted 11-28-2018 06:10 PM

I run end grain through my planer with a shelix head. For pieces too wide to fit, I use a router sled. Once you do get it flat with a sled, I recommend using a 1/2 sheet orbital sander since it has the largest surface area of any hand held sander.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View AlaskaGuy's profile


6005 posts in 3162 days

#3 posted 11-28-2018 07:16 PM

Some ideas here.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View bondogaposis's profile


5843 posts in 3205 days

#4 posted 11-28-2018 07:20 PM

I bought a drum sander, but I used to use a ROS. What I learned it to be very careful during the final glue up not to let the pieces get out of alignment. It will save a lot of work down the road.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View maxyedor's profile


40 posts in 1178 days

#5 posted 11-28-2018 07:57 PM

Low angle jack plane is your friend here, oh, and ibuprofen.

It’s a very slow and physically tough process to flatten an end-grain cutting board with just hand tools. A router sled is a much better option IMHO, followed by a sander of some sort, preferably a geared head ROS like the Bosch 1250 or Festool Rotex.

I have a large drum sander, but never use to to “flatten” cutting boards, they’re just so, so slow. If you’ve got minor imperfections or a little rise/dip here and there, they’re awesome, but if one needs to really be flattened, pack a lunch and wear comfy shoes.

View them700project's profile


258 posts in 1872 days

#6 posted 11-28-2018 08:05 PM

Probably the wrong way to do this but I glue up an extra section or a sacrificial board and run it though the jointer/planer(it definately blows out the last bit), then I cut on table saw.

View bigblockyeti's profile


6735 posts in 2574 days

#7 posted 11-28-2018 09:35 PM

View WoodenDreams's profile


1125 posts in 764 days

#8 posted 11-28-2018 10:43 PM

Clamp it to a workbench & use a 3×21 or 4×24 portable belt sander. Or if you have a 4×36 benchtop sander use that. Then finish off with a orbital sander or detail sander.

View jonah's profile


2125 posts in 4152 days

#9 posted 11-29-2018 12:37 AM

Grab a couple pieces of melamine-faced particle board from HD and use one piece on the top and bottom to keep the board flat when you glue it up. Cut the pieces about an inch smaller than the board so you can still get the clamps on the ends.

It makes the glue up a bit harder, but it keeps the board a lot flatter. You’ll only need to sand it smooth with a random orbit sander.

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