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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
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Default Types of wood?

Hello to all, I am new to this forum and as well a new router owner. I recently purchased a router/table combo at sears for 89.99. I then headed to lowes to check out the different types of wood they had for me to practice on with out breaking the bank. After I picked up a 3 pc. decoratiive bit set made by skil, I just got a few pieces of 1*6 of southern pine. Which is what brings up my question. I mainly want to make signs and plaques for my four kids, do most people buy pine and stain it to the color they want, or do most buy the actually buy the type of wood? I just noticed that a 1*4*8 of oak was around 30.00 compared to 5.00 for pine. What would you consider crucial when making a wood selection? I know I will learn over time, but any advice that can save me time and money will be appreciated. I also saw that lowes had hardwood plywood, is this used for routing projects?

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 03:16 PM
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HI Kevin

I would suggest you not use plywood of any kind for signs or MDF OR just about any of the man made wood stock.
Once you open , it's open to water

Take a hard look at the Trex stock,,at HD/Lowes it will last for ever ,it mills out like wood or to beat the high price of hardwood take a peek at old pallets most of it is Oak stock sometimes poplar and other other hardwood..I have in the pass come up with walnut /maple and rose wood from old pallets....


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Originally Posted by bigmuddy View Post
Hello to all, I am new to this forum and as well a new router owner. I recently purchased a router/table combo at sears for 89.99. I then headed to lowes to check out the different types of wood they had for me to practice on with out breaking the bank. After I picked up a 3 pc. decoratiive bit set made by skil, I just got a few pieces of 1*6 of southern pine. Which is what brings up my question. I mainly want to make signs and plaques for my four kids, do most people buy pine and stain it to the color they want, or do most buy the actually buy the type of wood? I just noticed that a 1*4*8 of oak was around 30.00 compared to 5.00 for pine. What would you consider crucial when making a wood selection? I know I will learn over time, but any advice that can save me time and money will be appreciated. I also saw that lowes had hardwood plywood, is this used for routing projects?

Thanks,
BigMuddy



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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 03:54 PM
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Greetings Kevin and welcome to the router forum. What kinds of wood, What you can afford first, what you want second.

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 08-31-2009, 05:04 PM
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+1 on Trex, especially if you want durability outside and exposed to the elements.

The material will differ greatly from person to person. A high-end marine dealer might choose to use Teak, where that 1"x4"x8' runs about $100. A garage sale would use marking pen on a paper sign. It's very much how much you want to spend and what look you want to create.

The same is true with plaques. If it was something to be kept long-term and of great value (worth spending lots on), I'd use premium wood, solid brass for all finishing and screws, etc. If it was a something with a limited life expectancy, I'd look at something less expensive.

The tradeoff is a bit of time vs. money too. If you buy pine or poplar and stain it to the color of walnut its another step. You lose time but spend more money. For small plaques (to be inside) I'd locate your local hardwood distributor. You may well be able to buy a short piece of hardwood (i.e. 1x4x10") for a few dollars.

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2009, 09:25 AM Thread Starter
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What is TREX?, I had gone to lowes last night and spent about an hour just looking around the lumber yard. I dont remember seeing any thing by that name, is it a brand? I did find Oak and Birch hardwood plywood in 4*8*3/4 sheets that I think will be good for indoor plaques and signs. Have anyone used these? I was curious how the edges would look after routing being that it is a laminate? I could always paint the edges black like I see alot of plaques used to mount trophy deer mounts.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2009, 11:14 AM
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While you are just starting out it wouldn't hurt to practice your signs on inexpensive pine. I think that plywood of any sort would NOT be good sign material just because of the layers and edges.
Pine is soft and may tear out easily so take light passes.
TREX is an enginered composite deck material. You can read about it here.

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Latin instructions for firewood.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2009, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by bigmuddy View Post
What is TREX?, I had gone to lowes last night and spent about an hour just looking around the lumber yard. I dont remember seeing any thing by that name, is it a brand? I did find Oak and Birch hardwood plywood in 4*8*3/4 sheets that I think will be good for indoor plaques and signs. Have anyone used these? I was curious how the edges would look after routing being that it is a laminate? I could always paint the edges black like I see alot of plaques used to mount trophy deer mounts.
Hi Kevin, welcome to the forums.
Trex is the stuff that composite decking material is made of. Another sawdust and glue product.
I went through a bunch of scrap pine, plywood, particle board, OSB, MDF and about anything else you can route practicing for signs.
Like Jim pointed out, decide what value your end product will have and go from there as to the cost of material. I think Oak or Birch plywood is a good idea for indoor signs. The lettering and edges can be painted and/or the edges edge banded. Bob and Harry both have some phenomenal signs posted in their galleries. They have both posted some step-by-step how to's also. I am sure other members have also, I just haven't been through all the information available here (likely won't have time to, after all I'm 60+ ).

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-01-2009, 01:51 PM
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Hi

Here's a shot of the Trex stock,,,,it can be use for a fence on your router,it comes with a texture but it can be milled just like wood,it's very slick once it's been plane down,it's about 15/16" thick the norm and it's very hvy.I would say almost as hvy.as Oak maybe more..

It's almost like poly.stock that they use on many router table fences, but the neat that about trex you can use it for out door furniture and with some stainless steel fasteners they will last almost for ever,,no need to seal/stain/re coat it ever two years or so,,like they say build it and forget..

Put it by the water,like on the boardwalk,pool side,back yard, great stuff as you can see I sold on the trex.. for any out door project


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Originally Posted by bigmuddy View Post
What is TREX?, I had gone to lowes last night and spent about an hour just looking around the lumber yard. I dont remember seeing any thing by that name, is it a brand? I did find Oak and Birch hardwood plywood in 4*8*3/4 sheets that I think will be good for indoor plaques and signs. Have anyone used these? I was curious how the edges would look after routing being that it is a laminate? I could always paint the edges black like I see alot of plaques used to mount trophy deer mounts.


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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 12:16 AM
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Welcome to the RouterForums BigMuddy.




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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-18-2009, 01:35 AM
 
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Yea I to just started making raised letter signs.I have been using Cedar and it cuts real nice.I have also used pine and it to looks ok but I perfer cedar. Walnut and oak seem to hard on my router but like I sais I'm just starting out.I'm on my fourth sign.
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