Expansion and contraction

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Forum topic by Fireworker1205 posted 08-15-2017 03:10 PM 881 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1 post in 1088 days

08-15-2017 03:10 PM

New to the forum. I apologize if this was already discussed.

Im looking into build a kitchen table for my fire department. After watching a lot of videos i found that an issue occurs with the expansion and contraction of the wood over time. This table will have a decal with logos underneath a 1/4 inch layer of epoxy. The concern over the table cracking has left me perplexed on what is best to use.

My question for those more knowledgable is, would i be better off using plywood as the table top? Does plywood expand at a similar rate?

I am using 1×3 lumber as the edges of the table to clean up the look and im also putting them 1/4 inch up to create the sides to make the layer of epoxy. If the plywood does expand will that push those 1×3s outward and crack the epoxy?

5 replies so far

View Vindex's profile


109 posts in 1625 days

#1 posted 08-15-2017 04:23 PM

Plywood is stable and does not have the same expansion/contraction issues as you would get making a tabletop out of solid planks. In fact, most commercially made tables are sheet goods (Plywood, MDF, etc.) with a veneer on top and some hardwood trim around the edges. I would say go for the plywood.

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2289 days

#2 posted 08-15-2017 04:25 PM

Use ply with epoxy used like that. It will not move noticeably.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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Monte Pittman

30560 posts in 3141 days

#3 posted 08-15-2017 06:37 PM

Plywood should be fine.

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-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View bondogaposis's profile


5803 posts in 3154 days

#4 posted 08-15-2017 08:34 PM

Plywood is stable and won’t give you issues like solid wood would. Plywood is recommended for your application.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View ArtMann's profile


1480 posts in 1619 days

#5 posted 08-17-2017 12:42 AM

There is a restaurant I go to from time to time that has tables made from glued up 6/4 red oak and covered in the poured epoxy you are talking about. I have yet to see a split or crack in any of them. I don’t know how they get by with it but they have zero problems. It may be that the epoxy has a certain amount of elasticity.

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