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5-piece Doors with Vertical Grain Rails4/12
I have a client who is wanting a typical 5-piece frame and flat panel door but with the grain direction of the rails running vertically. The species is rift white oak. I have never been asked this before (which is what keeps this business so interesting). I could make a typical rift oak door, run it through the sander to net 11/16 and then press veneer on face and back to keep it balanced. I'm just not sure how to clean up the inside corners with the panel already in place or even if this method would stay flat over the long haul. Has anyone here done this successfully? Please share!
I would be most worried about the strength of the rails. It is oak so not as bad but wood is never going to be as strong that way. I like the veneer idea. You could try doing the whole door or maybe just your rails before you build the doors.
How about using G2S ply for the frame. Cut and edgeband with 1.5mm before milling for panel grooves and joinery? I know, it sounds like sacrilege.
I would definitely be afraid to use a solid piece as I think it would eventually crack as the stresses from opening and closing would affect those rails.
There are some times you just say no.
Scott, I think you're on to something...If I started with 11/16" thick normal grain rift oak and cross laminated it on both sides with 1/16" thick rift veneer, that would give me enough thickness for milling and finishing out in the sander without burning through. I would just "premake" enough sticks to accommodate all the rails. The door would retain it's strength and, if I hand ease all the outside edges, you would be hard pressed to even see the lamination. Also, assembly would be standard instead of having to let in the panels after the fact and trying to hide the seam on back. Does anyone see a problem with this? Will this make for doors that are more prone to warping over time? Thanks for the help!
Whatever the thickness of the shoulder on your stick cutter is, is how thick the veneer should be.
I think you should build a door to see how it reacts and to see how long this extra veneering will take you. Whatever you charge for doors it'll be at least double for your troubles.
Leo, yes, a trial run would definitely be in order and, yes, this would add a lot of extra cost to an otherwise simple door. Before I give a final cost and commitment, I will test it out to see if I even feel comfortable with it. Saying "No" is an acceptable answer at this point too although I do enjoy pushing the envelope. ..
Ya, I have a problem with that too. Interesting projects make interesting work.
The only way I would touch this is what you said originally-- normal doors but with vertical grain glued on with a veneer press.
I assume you'd be pressing it on there before the parts are cut and the doors assembled.
Doing it as a complex lamination, or with straight vertical grain lumber, is adding a lot of variables to an already slightly complex assembly.
Veneering the rails removes most of those complexities, it just adds a complexity such that you can't burn through the veneer during sanding.
Maybe you could use heavily quarter sawn for the rails and let the natural grain give the look you are trying for .Good luck
“When you come to a fork in the road, take it”.
Jobs like this separate us into the group that likes predictable, known paths with no variables, and the group that is willing to take an unknown challenge. No right or wrong there, but they each have different mindsets.
Taking chances keeps the work interesting, and when surmounted, reward me mentally. Financial reward may or may not also be a part of the job, but once you get the reputation as the guy that says “yes”, then you will always get the more interesting work.
The guy that said “no” will always be remembered as the guy that said no.
I'd do it. Gluing veneer to both sides of the rails should work just fine. Cope and stick as per normal.