resawing and panel glue up

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Forum topic by trsnider posted 07-21-2018 06:53 PM 595 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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209 posts in 2788 days

07-21-2018 06:53 PM

I’ve resawn and done a panel glue up for real this time. The panels are about 13.5” wide and have a 5/32” bow. Of course the frames will force them to flatten out. I know that the boards should’ve been ripped and the grain alternated, but the panels are for the door of a small cabinet and I went for looks over the right technique. I had the right technique gluing them up – cauls on each side and the middle. Newbie at resawing and panel glue up. The wood is walnut, but I don’t think that matters. Probably the skill/knowlege of the woodworker.
What’s the consensus for resawing and panel glueup where looks outweigh proper technique? Ideas/Suggestions?

5 replies so far

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2264 days

#1 posted 07-21-2018 07:12 PM

Did you lay it on a flat surface for a day or so after coming out of clamps?

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

View Rich's profile


5626 posts in 1367 days

#2 posted 07-21-2018 07:26 PM

I ve resawn and done a panel glue up for real this time. The panels are about 13.5” wide and have a 5/32” bow. Of course the frames will force them to flatten out. I know that the boards should ve been ripped and the grain alternated…

- trsnider

Actually, you are better off with one large bow than a washboard of little ones. It will flatten out evenly, unlike alternating grain. Here’s what Tage Frid says:

Tage Frid on Alternating Rings

Another thing most books tell you is to alternate the wood to compensate for the cupping caused by shrinkage. This would be fine if you wanted to design a washboard. But if you want to use your wood, for example, for a tabletop, it will take a lot of screws to hold it down, plus every second board will usually have a lot of sapwood, especially today with the shortage and high cost of wood, where every piece must be used. But, if we don’t alternate the wood, it will work together and form an arch that will be very easy to hold down with a few screws. Also, we will have the center of the wood facing up, meaning less sapwood, better color, harder and usually fewer knots.

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

View Aj2's profile


3098 posts in 2576 days

#3 posted 07-21-2018 08:17 PM

Lots of reasons why you would get a bow in resawn panel.
Over clamping to close a slightly happy joint or edges not square to the face.
Stressed out wood or to hot in your shop for that kind of work.
Laying freshly sawn wood down with out air to both sides.
List goes on on.

-- Aj

View jerryminer's profile


960 posts in 2219 days

#4 posted 07-21-2018 11:39 PM

I’m with Tage Frid on “proper” technique. I glue my panels based on appearance rather than the “alternating growth rings” theory.

If you can force the panel flat easily by hand, the frame will hold it fine. Don’t worry.

Resawing can (and often does) expose moister wood in the center of the board—which often causes the resulting board to cup, as the now exposed moist wood dries out. Acclimating will help.

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View trsnider's profile


209 posts in 2788 days

#5 posted 07-22-2018 12:59 PM

Thanks for the responses. I’ll look at weighing down the panels and clamping next time. It was hot in the garage shop as it always is, maybe that contributed to the bowing. I know that alternating rings is the proper way to glue, but appearances outweighed that.

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