Frame and Panel Doors

I 'm in the process of making two frame and panel doors out of cherry. To get matching panels, I resawed them from one piece of wood. The resulting panels look gorgeous. However, there is one problem. One of the panels has two cracks, one 2" and the other 2 1/2." The cracks are completely through the " panel and about a sheet of paper wide. Can I fill the cracks and save the panel? If so, what do I use as filler?
Thanks for the help. Ed
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Since the panels are going to move, a filler is not likely to do much good. Your best bet may be to kerf the cracks (or split the panel), joint the edges and glue the piece together. That particular panel would look nice somewhere far from eye level on the finished door...
I'm assuming that the 'cracks' are really checking (a split along the wood fiber line is 'checking', and a fracture that crosses the grain and ruptures individual wood fibers is 'cracking').
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A tinted epoxy? How dry is the wood? Have you finished the milling of the panel, and are down to sandpaper or scraper? I just built some doors, and one panel has small cracks maybe such as yours. Daylight shone through. And, these were right in the path of the vertical panel raising router bit! Scary. Since I'm running out of wood wide/thick enough to make another panel, that one had to do. Well, I was_really_ careful with the raising bit, made a ZC insert for the fence, featherboards, tiny bites, and it came out just fine. Once finished, the cracks will never be seen. This wood's very dry, and I made very sure that the panels can move for any increases in humidity. Tom
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And if it does split further, I'll make new ones. Here's a look at the cracks, in the "work in progress" album. http://tomeshew.spaces.live.com / Tom
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wrote:

Black epoxy looks GREAT as a filler on cherry.
Try some on scrap and see for yourself. Don't sand the epoxy, plane or scrape it smooth. You can tint any 2 part epoxy with a small amount of black artists oil color or Behlen's black colorant.
On cherry and white oak, I use black epoxy almost exclusively as a filler. It looks very natural, way better than attempting a "match", if done correctly.
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What he said.
I've had pretty good luck with clear epoxy. I've also mixed in some finely ground coffee to fill in a dark knot or bark occlusion.
-Steve
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