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Dog hole problem - oiled bench after drilling holes!

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Forum topic by Jeremymcon posted 03-02-2019 08:40 PM 625 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jeremymcon

342 posts in 1006 days


03-02-2019 08:40 PM

I am finishing up my Moravian workbench build, and I wasn’t thinking and put some finish (boiled lindseed oil, polyurethane, pure tung oil, and mineral spirits blend) on the bench after having drilled my dog holes.

Now, my holdfasts won’t wedge themselves into the holes! They just bounce back out. It’s only been a couple days, and it’s very cold in my shop, so hopefully the oil will cure and the holdfasts will be able to grip again?

Anybody else experienced this problem? Did curing time fix the problem? Any other solutions besides waiting to see if the oil curing fully will fix it?


16 replies so far

View Mainboom's profile

Mainboom

89 posts in 84 days


#1 posted 03-02-2019 08:56 PM

Are the holes drill vertically ? if so read on if not don’t. Also are you talking about benchdogs or hold fast they are 2 different things.

there is a video by norm abrams. go to new yankee workshop website it season 1 episode 13. im referencing this so you can watch it if you don’t believe me…. you don’t just drill holdfast/benchdog holes vertically. they have to have a tilt to them or they will come out. 4 degrees works fine. you also need to have a spring of some kind weather it be wood or metal. so if you drilled them straight that would be your problem.

-- CRANE OPERATORS START EARLY because iron workers need their heros ready when they wake up

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

3555 posts in 909 days


#2 posted 03-02-2019 08:57 PM

You can drill the holes a little larger. Holdfasts will hold in holes that are a fair amount larger than them. Wait and let everything cure, and if they still won’t hold, either drill slightly larger or stick a hacksaw blade into a dowel, and use it to ream the holes just a smidge (maybe a 1/16”, if that) larger and you should be back in business.

-- Dave - Minneapolis

View SMP's profile

SMP

595 posts in 232 days


#3 posted 03-02-2019 09:04 PM

How thick is the benchtop? And which holdfasts? Do they have a shiny black paint on them. I know some you have to roughen before they will grab. And if the benchtop is too thin or too thick they won’t grab.

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2747 posts in 3210 days


#4 posted 03-02-2019 09:51 PM

I regularly wipe a fresh coat of BLO on my bench and don’t have trouble with the holdfasts not staying put. If you didn’t have any trouble b/f you finished the top, I’d suggest that you take some coarse sandpaper and rough up the shaft of the holdfasts.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Kazooman's profile

Kazooman

1293 posts in 2279 days


#5 posted 03-02-2019 10:48 PM



Are the holes drill vertically ? if so read on if not don t. Also are you talking about benchdogs or hold fast they are 2 different things.

there is a video by norm abrams. go to new yankee workshop website it season 1 episode 13. im referencing this so you can watch it if you don t believe me…. you don t just drill holdfast/benchdog holes vertically. they have to have a tilt to them or they will come out. 4 degrees works fine. you also need to have a spring of some kind weather it be wood or metal. so if you drilled them straight that would be your problem.

- Mainboom

I think that there may be some confusion in terms going on. Norm’s video is for a wagon (or tail) vise. You do need to allow for the pressure of clamping the wood causing the piece to lift from the bench. You can do this like Norm did with angled holes, and/or with angled faces on the bench dogs you use. You can have perfectly vertical holes with proper bench dogs. Here are two pictures of my Veritas “Bench Pups”. They have a a spring loaded lever to make them snug in the hole and an angled face to keep the work piece down.

However, the OP mentioned using a holdfast. The holes in the bench for a holdfast should be vertical. You do not know which direction the arm of the holdfast will be facing.

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

1084 posts in 1821 days


#6 posted 03-02-2019 11:03 PM

+1 use some nasty 40 grit to put some horizontal texture on shaft of hold fast. Especially if they are painted type as pictured above. That paint is too slick.

+1 I re-coat my bench with Tried and True Original Wood Finish (BLO and beeswax) as needed, about twice a year. Hold fast don’t hold well till BLO cures. But IMHO it doesn’t matter as bench is too oily & slick to use for same 24-48 hours that hold fast slip out?

Cheers!

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

View Jeremymcon's profile

Jeremymcon

342 posts in 1006 days


#7 posted 03-03-2019 01:24 AM

I’m talking about hold fasts not holding. I think that the hacksaw blade is a good idea! I’ll keep that in my back pocket in case just allowing the oil to cure doesn’t work. Good to know that at least one person has noticed that holdfasts don’t hold for a while after finishing.

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Jeremymcon

342 posts in 1006 days


#8 posted 03-03-2019 01:26 AM

I applied that last coat of finish about 4 days ago now, but it does still feel a little oily to the touch in some places. I’m thinking the tung oil might be the culprit – it tends to take a while to cure by itself, but I guess I was hoping the drying agents in the blo would cure it faster… I just had a little left and wanted to use it up! I’ll report back in another few days.

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Jeremymcon

342 posts in 1006 days


#9 posted 03-03-2019 01:28 AM

Oh! My holdfasts are from Gramercy and are bare metal. They are still pretty smooth though, so I could see myself sanding them a bit eventually.

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

3555 posts in 909 days


#10 posted 03-03-2019 04:56 AM

A hacksaw blade and a dowel or a scrap makes a fine shop-made reamer. Tapered or straight, as needed. But definitely hold off until the oil is cured. I’d hold off on scuffing the holdfasts, too. Give it a few more days to cure.

-- Dave - Minneapolis

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

3222 posts in 1714 days


#11 posted 03-03-2019 12:45 PM

Try sticking a rag in the holes and sort of work it up and down vigorously to buff it. You might need a helper or a long rag to do this for holes in the middle of the bench. This will wipe off any excess but more importantly, you want to generate some friction to warm it up a little. For BLO/Danish oil at least, the heat may help speed up the curing process for the oil. Anytime I apply one of the Tried and True finishes I makes sure that I generate some friction while wiping off the excess oil and it definitely helps speed up the curing process in my experience.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View BlueRidgeDog's profile

BlueRidgeDog

469 posts in 106 days


#12 posted 03-03-2019 01:17 PM

Once dry the surface will be abraded by the holdfast in due time. Sand your holdfast with aggressive grit paper around the post, not up and down.

View ibewjon's profile

ibewjon

273 posts in 3120 days


#13 posted 03-03-2019 08:19 PM

Maybe use a hair dryer to heat the holes some. A heat gun would be too hot and could ignite.

View Jeremymcon's profile

Jeremymcon

342 posts in 1006 days


#14 posted 03-04-2019 01:54 PM

That’s an idea. I might try the hair dryer/heat gun approach (heat gun on low heat, not too close).

I tried the holdfasts again today, and in a couple holes it seemed alike they were starting to grip. The oil still isn’t fully cured in the bench top either, so I’m thinking it’ll all work out once the oil cures completely. Hopefully.

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

3222 posts in 1714 days


#15 posted 03-04-2019 02:47 PM

Maybe you just need to get a force fan heater out there and have it blowing on the entire top for a few days.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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