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Stop slab splits with wood glue only?

Blue42

Blue42

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This topic is a little bit off for milling, but I can't find it on the web at large.
I'm finally using some of the chestnut oak I milled to make a barn door for inside the house. There are end splits in most of the slabs, including the ones I'm going to use for this.
1) Will wood glue by itself or epoxy by itself stop a split from spreading? Or do you need a butterfly too?
2) Also the split goes most of the way, to all the way, through the slab. Is there any reason not to put the butterfly all the way through the wood too?
3) When you first cut your slabs and you see a split developing on the end, will cutting it off a few inches up from where the split stops really stop it from progressing, or will it just open up again?

I'm still pretty new at milling, but I wonder if there is a fast way to treat your slabs before you stack them to keep the ends from splitting. Whack a two ended nail/anchor in on spots you see a split started? Anchor Seal isn't doing the job for the pieces that really want to split.
 

Bmac

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How long are your splits at the ends?

I always expect some end splitting, even with anchorseal, it's just part of drying wood. Don't trim the ends until they are dry, doing so while they are wet will only allow potentially new end splits. If stickering I always try to put the sticker close to the ends of the boards as possible when drying, that may help a little.

Now the splitting I'm talking about at the ends is usually anywhere from an inch or two up to 4 or 5 inches. These end splits are typically self limiting and stop progressing or growing after the wood is dry. I always expect some waste to be cut off of the end of my boards.

If you want to fill in the splits dyed epoxy works very well and butterflies are an attractive option.
 
Blue42

Blue42

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Thanks. The split I'm looking to fix is 10" long.
Will wood glue by itself do the job to stop the split from getting worse? Or do you need to put in butterflies too?
 

Bmac

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It's hard to tell with out a picture, try to post one.

A few other factors;
-How wide is the split?
-How dry is the wood?
-How you plan to use the slab? Are you just trying to stop the splitting or build with it now?
-What would look better, epoxy or dovetails?

If the slab is not dried all the way it may be best to just wait until it's dry before repairing the split.
 
Blue42

Blue42

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I'm looking for a more general answer, not necessarily specific to my piece of wood. Does anyone use wood glue or epoxy by itself to stop a split from getting worse?
 

tfp

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The answer is tough because it also needs to take into account how you are going to use the piece of wood. If you take a green cracked slab and screw it down to a frame to make a table it more than likely won’t survive. If you dry it out and fill the crack with epoxy, then mount it to the frame in a way that allows it to move seasonally, then the epoxy will have a good chance of holding if it’s a small crack. Larger cracks might require something mechanical like a bow tie. Then again you might get lucky and nothing goes wrong. I don’t have anything resembling good luck so I bow tie everything, even to crazy levels when I’m trying to save a rarer piece of wood I don’t want to waste. Wood glue hasn’t worked at all in my experience. It is not useful as a structural gap filler.
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Blue42

Blue42

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Thanks. That makes sense.
At the moment I'm making a barn door out of a big slab of oak.
I'm learning one step at a time, starting back when the 150 year old chestnut oak fell, and I couldn't see it go to waste. I'm finally making my first item from it.
It took forever to out one bowtie in it using a chisel and drill. The wood is 2" thick and I out the key in an inch down. As long as I'm just going for function and not artistry so much, I need to find a faster way for next time. Which I suppose you're only choice for that is a router and template.
It looks like you did it by hand though on your board. Looks nice. A lot nicer than mine.
I know nothing about designing in expansion contraction breathing room when making stuff. As far as I knew you just screwed it all together and you were good.
 

tfp

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Since it's only a barn, there's a chance you can just make it into a door and you never have any (major) issues with it, compared to if you wanted to use it somewhere on your house where how close it fits is important. Kinda like the difference between making a pole barn or something built to code. In your case I think all you need to worry about is how you mount it to the barn. It will change in width not length.

Faster bow ties just take practice. A couple of neat and tidy perfect symmetrical bow ties would probably look out of place on a nice rustic slab door. I hock out most of the meat on mine with a small trim router freehand then finish it up with a chisel. Just make sure you don't do your on-the-line final cut with too much meat left behind or it will squash your chisel over the line and you'll end up with gaps. Try using a marking knife and not a pencil as well. I use a knife then go over it with a pencil just so I can see it while routing.

I'd think it was really cool if I saw a dudes barn and it had a bow tie helping the door along. Everyone who goes in there will probably ask about it, or at least wonder wtf it is :)
 
John T super cab

John T super cab

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The barn door is inside the house . I mark my butterflies with a 4 or 6 " disk and make a different shape to add to where it's going every time . It doesn't take any longer to cut then if i screw one i just make a butterfly a litter bigger mark around it then cut again .Sometimes if it doesn't show i just my biscuit cutter \\\\\\\\then my disk to mark D shaped pices of the same wood and cut them on the bandsaw they look nice and they are quick . I have even made them in zig zag it they are under a lot of stress .
 
motolife313

motolife313

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Wood glue does work good. I've used it and used to use it. Hard to sand off tho. Not sure it's going to work that much better tho. If theres a big crack I dont think any wood sealer will help with that tho. It would probably crack anyway
 
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