I recently completed my first glue-up of a frame and panel door. I used
"space balls" to allow for expansion/contraction of the panel. However, I
think that when I clamped the door after gluing, some of the glue from the
rail and stile joints squeezed into the space at each corner of the panel
between the top of the panel and the bottom of the rail (or the bottom of
the panel and the top of the rail for the bottom rail). If so, the "space
balls" seem like wasted effort since the panel is now glued to the rail
and/or stile at each corner of the panel.
I will appreciate any advice regarding the proper way to glue the stiles
and rails without glue squeezing onto the corners of the free floating
panel. The only suggestion I found in the archives was to place wax paper
between the panel and the rails/stiles. I am hoping there is a better
Just be careful to not put too much glue in that location. The balls help
keep the panel centered while assembling and after. Chances are that the
small spot of glue will break loose as the panel expands or contracts.
BTDT... :( Typical of "first effort" and unless you had a really large
amount of squeeze-out, probably not enough of a bond to really hurt.
However, the solution is less glue, more strategically placed...use
only enough glue to cover the surface and keep it away from the inner
corner--there will sufficient squeeze-out/flow to make the joint. You
should only have sufficient glue for a tiny bit of squeeze-out to
occur--anything more is simply being wasted, anyway. There's nothing
like making a couple (or several) of the rail/stile joints on scrap
pieces and gluing them just for practice to experiment on how much glue
and where...one can even then go the resulting step and experiment to
verify how strong they really are...
As an aside, I've never thought the space balls any real necessity,
Thanks for reply. I did make some practice joints with scrap being careful
to minimize the amount of glue I used. I found that I could break the joints
apart with my hands unless I used more glue than I had been using.
Therefore, when I did the glue-up on the actual panel, I wanted to be sure
to use enough glue. I don't think I used an excessive amount of glue, but I
wanted to know whether there was a technique which eliminated the concern as
to whether or not the glue contacted the panel.
what I do is this. first make a thinned batch of glue- thin enough to
brush on cleanly and soak in a bit without dripping everywhere. use
that to prime the glue surfaces, especially the end grain. depending on
the complexity and number of joints, that will have dried/soaked in
enough by the time you get done with the last joint to start back on
the first joint with unthinned glue. now spread a thin layer of full
strength glue and assemble. the result is very little squeezeout and a
If you finish your panels before assembly, simply applying wax to the
edges of the panels will prevent glue from sticking to them. Come to
think of it, if your careful with applying the wax and only get it on
the edge that fits within the groove, I don;t see why it wouldn't work
for unfinsihed panels as well.
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