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5 piece door construction method8/2
I am interested how shops build their 5 piece doors. I had a subcontractor helping me out this past spring and he commented on how strange my method was and i wondered how others do it.
I mill my stile rail material a 1/16" wider than finished width(example, if i want 2 1/2" wide stiles, i make them 2 9/16"). I mill everything from rough stock and keep the stock as long as possible. When I'm cutting the stiles to lenght I add 1/8". Rails are cut 1/16" longer, so when they are coped i take 1/32" off each end. When the door gets glued up its 1/8" wider and longer than it needs to be . I then finish size after the glue dries. This allows me to get a perfectly square door and trim off and dents from the clamps.
Just wondering if there is a better way. Thanks, Matt
That's pretty much how I do it too.
Yup, same here
My main cutter sets also take a small amount of the ends of the rails off when tenoning. And, since I run the profile on the shaper, using an aux fence with the power feed forcing the stock away from the hood, any varience in width doesnt matter (although I mill the door stock 4 sides anyhow).
The only thing I do differently than you is I generally cut the stock up into shorter lengths before jointing, as I find leaving the frame stock in longer lengths still allows some less than perfectly straight stock after milling. I used to try and mill 8 and 10 foot lengths but I prefer to rough cut to shorter lengths now. Takes a bit more time in handling, but everything is arrow straight.
Sorry if I was unclear - what I was referring to in my 1st paragraph was I too leave the lengths slightly longer, and after milling - the door is very close to required size, and then finish size after assembly.
Your subcontractor doesn't understand what it takes to get a perfect product and/or why. I do about the same except cross cut rough stock (stile parts) before ripping. What is left I make rails from. I cut my doors 1/8" oversize all around. In this way I don't have to fuss around trying to make them fit my euro cabinets.
If your method is so strange...what is his?? He's probably never made a door. Most people have no idea how much work is actually in a door to do it the right way.
He makes his doors a little too big or a little too small and while he's at it he makes them out of square with a bunch of clamp marks.
We like you cut them square and to size after glueing them together.
S4S 1/16" over width
I do it like JR Rutter.
I rip stock an 1/8" over sized. I do my sticking cut first removing a 1/16" using an outboard fence with the shaper, then using a straight cutter I finish sizing the material a bit less than a 1/32" over sized. Rails are cut an 1/8" long, taking a 1/16" off on each coping pass. Stiles are cut about a 1/32" long. Doors are brought to finished size on the edge sander.
Thanks for replying Karl. I was wondering how you maintain accuracy when you have to rely on the sander to remove so much?
I do it mostly by feel on overlay doors. I can hit all four edges and just pull a tape quick when done to see if anything needs to be hit a bit more. It takes a while to get good at it. If I haven't built overlay doors in a while, it certainly goes better at the bottom of the pile than the first few. If you're rusty or impatient, it can get frustrating. I'm removing about a 1/64 off the top and bottom of the door, and about 3/64 from the width. With a 100g belt it goes quickly.
On inset stuff, which is the bulk of what I do, I buzz the hinge side on the edge sander to clean up that edge, fit the bottom of the door to fit the adjacent rail perfectly, then I use a scriber to mark the top of the door at the corners, and the top and bottom of the other stile to get my desired margin. Then I just sand to my marks.