Laminating Wood Question

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Forum topic by AJchris posted 01-20-2011 12:02 AM 2941 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View AJchris's profile


21 posts in 2958 days

01-20-2011 12:02 AM

Topic tags/keywords: laminate pillars question arts and crafts

I have heard a lot about laminating wood and don’t really know anything about it. So I will ask is there different types of lamination? I am trying to make a hardwood beam that is 9 inches square. After that I plan on cutting it into an octagon shaped pillar. I have heard Lamination isn’t as good as solid lumber. Any thoughts on this anyone would mind sharing?


-- Andrew "Yes I can" from NC

5 replies so far

View childress's profile


841 posts in 3812 days

#1 posted 01-20-2011 01:55 AM

Actually, in some cases, lamination can be better than a solid piece of wood. It can make the beam/post more stable. Basically, lamination is gluing two or more pieces together. If done right, you can have a stronger and more stable beam than if it was one solid piece…But since you say you don’t know anything about it, you might be better off finding a solid piece and going from there. Go to your local lumber yard that sells construction lumber and inquire there, probably save you some headaches too.

-- Childress Woodworks

View gljacobs's profile


76 posts in 2958 days

#2 posted 01-24-2011 12:09 AM

Not to veer of topic but have you considered the option of using 3/4 or 4/4 stock and cutting eight pieces with corresponding 67.5 degree angles to produce the octagon with less waste and weight?

View AJchris's profile


21 posts in 2958 days

#3 posted 01-24-2011 12:47 AM

That is a good idea too. Thank You for sharing it with me.

-- Andrew "Yes I can" from NC

View Nomad62's profile


726 posts in 3229 days

#4 posted 01-24-2011 08:11 PM

If you want to make a laminated beam you will need to first resurface all faces that will be glued so the glue will work the best. I read at one time but can’t remember the exact reason why but wood left to open air will tend to hold glue less strongly than a fresh surface; also, the surfaces need to be flat and true. Clamping is necessary. And as Childress said a laminated beam can indeed be stronger and even more reliable than a solid wood beam as you won’t need to worry so much about future warpage and cracking; the glue holds it all together. While it will be somewhat of a task, it will also be much cheaper; big wood carries a big price. Lastly, look for kiln dried wood, it will be much better than the typical green lumber.

-- Power tools put us ahead of the monkeys

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3918 days

#5 posted 01-24-2011 08:28 PM

You’ll get a more stable pillar if you “cooper” it from beveled boards.

If you cut it from a solid beam, it will surely crack somewhere. If that’s
okay with you, then go solid.

Carving such forms from solid wood has it’s own rewards, like an interesting
appearance for clear finishing, but if you’re just after the easiest, most
predictable way to make an octagonal pillar, go with the angled glue joints.

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