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  1. #1
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    Default What's a good technique for making two boards each perfectly level for gluing togethe

    I want to join some 2metre x 25mm x 250mm boards edgewise with glue and dowels and I can't get rid of the crack between them.

    I mean in parts. A length will match perfectly then there'll be a crack and so on.

    I'm just marking the cracks with pencil and sanding a bit - always using the same board for the sanding - and fit together, take another look.

    It's turning out to be very tedious, feels a bit hit and miss and isn't proceeding too quickly. I get the feeling I'm not doing it right.

    I've got typical home handyman hand power tools is all. A plane, a sander. That's it. And I do have a couple of old hand planes. Stanley's. A 9.5" and an 18".

    My power sander has a 12" sole.

    I faltered on the planing because of having to free up the power cord. Would that cause the planing to be uneven, digging in a bit more when going slower?

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  3. #2
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    A long metal straightedge and a sharp trying plane are the tools for the job. Straighten your edges to the metal straight edge with the trying plane ( the longer the plane the easier to get straight). The straight edge will rock on the high spots and you will be able to see daylight between metal and timber if there is a hollow. Once these anomalies are deleted your boards will be a good fit.

  4. #3
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    Don't try to sand them straight; power sanders always roll over the edges slightly and you will never get a flat surface.

  5. #4
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    Sounds like you need to learn how to joint using a handplane. The 18" Stanley you have is likely a number 6 foreplane; a bit short but it will do. Forget about the sander.

    In a nutshell these are the steps to follow:


    1. Get the blade sharp.
    2. Set the depth of cut to the minimum you can get a full width shaving from; practice on some scrap first.
    3. Support the planks along their length where possible; you don't want them to flex while planing.
    4. As the edges are 25mm wide you can edge both planks at the same time; your plane blade is 60mm wide. Put them side by side with the face edges either both in the middle or both on the outside.
    5. Run the plane along the edge until you are getting full width shavings; and check for square. If you are doing both together as per step 4 squareness is less critical.
    6. Check with the straightedge. I use a quality aluminium spirit level, by rubbing the level along the wood the high spots get grey marks. Skim off those marks and the boards will match the edge of the level.
    7. Place the boards together and look for gaps. A slight gap in the middle is fine; less than 0.5 is what you are aiming for. Gaps at the ends are NOT good...


    This is something you need to practice, ideally with someone who knows how to set up and use handplanes. Maybe you could start a "please help me learn this skill" thread asking if there is someone local to you who can give you some hands-on instruction; you'll need to expand a little on "South Australia" as your location though!
    Nothing succeeds like a budgie without a beak.

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Tiff View Post
    you'll need to expand a little on "South Australia" as your location though!
    Might be South Africa...

  7. #6
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    Apr 2009
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    sa
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    Default

    Well thanks for that, guys. Very valuable help.

    Main thing I take from that is the old Stanley hand plane is the tool for the job. Not the power planer, not the power sander.

    O.K. That's going to take me back to my childhood. I've not done any such woodwork since then.

    Better get to it...


  8. #7
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    Chief Tiff's tips are everything you need to know. Most are basics, but point 6 is a bonus. I've used a similar technique with chalk to mate two curved edges.
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  9. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    Brisbane
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    Matt Estlea has a YouTube video of edge jointing using hand tools:
    How To Edge Joint Panels by Hand | The Cabinet Project #1 | Free Online Woodworking School - YouTube

  10. #9
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    Even if 'power' is your preference, your power sander & power plane still wouldn't be up to the job.

    That's the domain of jointers... or in a pinch, a thicknesser with a jig. Good ones of which tend to be rather heavy and are more work-stations than hand tools.
    I may be weird, but I'm saving up to become eccentric.

    - Andy Mc

  11. #10
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    You can push the boards together, clamp them to a saw horse and rip down the middle with a circular saw.

    I use this method with my really large tables and get perfect results

  12. #11
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    Aug 2004
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    Perth WA
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    Default

    If you have a Router you can use that.
    Experienced in removing the tree from the furniture

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