Panel "barrels" actually. 1/4" wide. I am assembling and gluing panels is an unheated basement in winter. Temperature about 8C(47F). RH is unknown . . . probably high but actual water vapour content is low even at high RH in such temperatures compared to summer.
The "barrels" take up 1/4" of the panel slot. I try to cut the panels so as not to compress the barrels. My thinking is that the panels are pretty much as small as they ever will be at such temperatures and will only get larger at room temperature and summer humidity.
But the accuracy required in sizing the panels is at the edge of my woodworking accuracy.
Most of the time I end up with a slightly oversize panel, compressing the rubber barrels slightly. On one panel, I ended up with it too small and could create a gap by wiggling it side-to-side. I didn't like that at all.
How do you guys handle this with spaceballs, panalign strips or barrels?
Compress slightly on assembly or what?