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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 08:03 AM Thread Starter
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Default Glue-up problem

I am making some shutters for my daughters house. I'm using 1 x 6 cedar, 3 boards wide by 40" long and Titebond III glue. I had no problem joining 2 boards together, but last night when I attempted to glue the third board to 2 I'd already glued together the clamps kept coming undone.

Here is my procedure for your critique. I've got a piece of butcher paper taped to my workbench to keep it clean. I spread glue on the edges of my boards, struck a couple pieces of 60 grit sandpaper over them to put a little grit in the joint to keep it from slipping, laid the boards on the butcher paper and applied the clamps using light to moderate pressure ( I used 4 bar clamps) then I picked up an end, put some wax paper over the joint and applied a 6" wood clamp on the end to make sure the pieces were even. I cleaned off the glue line using a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water. That's when my problems started. Every time I picked up the other end to put a wood clamp on it the bar clamps just exploded off the workpiece. I tried it twice, once using blocks between the workpiece and the clamps and once without the blocks.

Any thoughts on why this is happening? Should I be alternating the sides on which I apply the clamps? I'm thinking I might have more success if I clamped one of the pieces in my vise and did everything vertically, that would make it easy to clamp from both sides. I'm feeling somewhat frustrated and would appreciate your thoughts.

Thanks,
rstermer

Last edited by rstermer; 09-02-2009 at 08:23 AM.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 08:18 AM
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Sounds like you're using too much pressure on the clamps. They don't have to be super tight. Good and snug with some glue squeeze-out is enough.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 12:05 PM
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Yep! they are too tight or they are bowing the shutter. I always alternate my clamps. If I have two under then I put two over. Are you using real bar clamps or pipe clamps. I've had that problem with the HF china made pipe clamps. That's why I buy only Pony pipe clamps now. Another thought, When you clamp something, it takes a few minutes for the pressure to spead out along the joint. I always go back and retighten the clamps after a while. They are almost always a little loose. Why aren't you glueing all three at once? Be sure you alternate the grain.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 12:19 PM Thread Starter
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Yep! they are too tight or they are bowing the shutter. I always alternate my clamps. If I have two under then I put two over. Are you using real bar clamps or pipe clamps. I've had that problem with the HF china made pipe clamps. That's why I buy only Pony pipe clamps now. Another thought, When you clamp something, it takes a few minutes for the pressure to spead out along the joint. I always go back and retighten the clamps after a while. They are almost always a little loose. Why aren't you glueing all three at once? Be sure you alternate the grain.
Harry
They are HF bar clamps. I'm not doing all three at once because I am not a very fast worker when it comes to woodworking and I was worried I'd run out of open time if I tried to do three at once. Grain is alternated. They might be loosening up, that cedar is very soft. Thanks for your reply.
rs
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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Sounds like you're using too much pressure on the clamps. They don't have to be super tight. Good and snug with some glue squeeze-out is enough.
I was using very light pressure because I wanted to be able to adjust the face alignment if I needed to. I was going to tighten them a bit once that was accomplished. Maybe I wasn't using enough pressure?

Thanks for your reply.
rs
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 05:41 PM
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Hi Rs,

Alternate them. 2 on one side, 2 on the other. This way, they will counter-act each other. I don't believe it's the pressure. I've seen and done this myself. Only solution I've found is to alternate the clamps.

2 clamps on my table, then the work pieces, then the other 2 clamps on top.

Ken

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-02-2009, 06:28 PM
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I don't think it's the clamps, It could be a combination of things, such as the cleaner that you used left the wax paper a little slippery on the wood, and the clamps slid off when moved. It sounds as you moved them as soon as you could. the joint was moving and the wood wasn't as tight in the clamps as you tightened them. Could be several things that caused the failure.

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