|Home » Forums » Laminating and Solid Surfacing » Message||Login|
You are not logged in. Consider these WOODWEB Member advantages:
Maple matchbook butcher block issues4/7
I am working on a massive butcher block, a combo block with multiple endgrain rows with a face grain full length piece every third row. As you can see in the pic all the end grain blocks are splitting after gluing them up. Has anyone ever dealt with this, and if so what is the cause, and what would you suggest to fix this from happening in the future.?
You have constructed a fine example of what not to do with wood. You may or may not have known about wood movement before you built this, but you do now.
Wood moves. This is probably the most basic characteristic of the material. Anyone that is going to step off the straight and narrow of proven methods needs to know and understand how wood moves, when and where, and why. There is a reason why you have never seen construction like you built, it will never work.
You have made a called cross grain construction, and as the wood moves - or tries to move - it is constricted by the wood 90 degrees to it. This will cause the end grain that is trying to shrink to split. Or if the end grain is swelling, it is compressing fibers that then split when it shrinks back.
There is no fix, your effort, your design, will have to be abandoned. There are ways that it can be made to work, but require advanced techniques and design work that are well beyond the efforts shown in your current project.
Either all end grain, or all long grain, but not the two together.
I suggest a good read of Bruce Hoadley's book Understanding Wood.
Yup, you created the poster child for cross grain construction education. You couldn't have done a better job of it. I learned about wood movement from Fine Woodworking magazine articles in the early 80s, and the Hoadley book. Do some reading or find a mentor.
Thank you for confirming what I already knew, this block was built by a colleague of mine and his team. I was looking for more than just my knowledge to help them understand the issue.
Your posts are quite contradictory. Your first post stated that you are working on this massive butcher block. Hard to cover up since we can't edit posts made on this forum.
No cover up, I addressed it that way for a very particular reason.
The concern is, of course, that this failed construction, and lack of understanding behind it, is part of a sale between a woodworker and a customer. What may happen to the top, the money and the two parties is the stuff of the tales that surface about woodworkers that can't or won't deliver, and the problems caused by same. These things can harm all of us that make our living in the field.
A recent thread (Hated Garage Shop?) touched on the edge of this subject. That the low threshold of entering the field does insure the ability of the maker. I have seen some terrible things done by people that had no business doing what they did - as a business.
I think that is the concern in rich's post. Do not take it personally.
No doubt this is very bad construction technique, but it also looks like end checking due to high moisture content. Could be a combination of both.
Just to comment further, I've seen many, many end grain cutting boards and butcher block tops with varying grain orientations on sites like Etsy and the like.
Jeff M - My point exactly. There are a lot of pissed off people out there that thought this "craftsman", carpenter, cabinetmaker, woodworker, whatever could make things that last. Unfortunately, with the low state of formal and informal education about any trade, as well as a low to no threshold of entry into this field, anyone can step up and take the customer's money and produce gawd knows what.
If that top is for a customer, whoever made it needs to be held to the fire for producing something that is of such poor quality it will never serve the purpose for which it is intended. They need to refund 100%, or deliver something of equal or greater value. Pronto.
If this is a personal project, then whatever.
It is easy to be defensive - "we are not revealing...." but the real measure of a man is the integrity they show when things go wrong. It is hard to be dumb. Pain is a great motivator.
None of this is directed at Tyler, by the way. He had the gumption to post with a good question, one that is alarmingly familiar. I guarantee that Tyler and whomever made that top will never make that same mistake again.
Gary Katz, a moderator for the Forums and an all around great craftsman and communicator says "Study your craft". Good advice.