I have finsihed the core of my new bench, made of glued up red oak. When I
put the benchdog strip on, using biscuits to keep it lined up, it ended up
with a lip of 1/16 or so.
Well, appears the last strips on the side are off, lowering the side, which
resulted in the benchdog stip being above the edge of the table, but in line
with the center.
What do I do? The local cabinet shop wants to charge me $60 to run it
through the sander, and a millwork place wants to charge me $150 to run it
through thier finish planer. Neither seems attractive, given it is not a
piece of furniture. However, I want the top to be flat for obvious reasons.
Also, I have not used a plane in 30 years and am skittish about relearning
on this top.
I'd go for the sixty dollar deal.
If you don't want to go that way, you can take a router and make a sub
base for it that extends about eighteen inches on one side.
Double face tape a half or three quarter thick, widish strip to the
bench top for the extended base to ride on and set a straight bit or a
morticing bit to a point that will take you within a heavy sixty
fourth of the final depth. Clean up with a cabinet scraper or some
sandpaper glued to a board that will have the paper riding the cut and
the section of the board without paper on it riding the bench top.
I'd still go for the sixty dollar deal.
(Don't go for the planer treatment. You'll have a lot of cleanup to
Thomas J. Watson-Cabinetmaker
Gulph Mills, Pennsylvania
When I built my latest workbench, several years ago I glued up two
sections, 15" wide out of 3" hardwood strips on edge (that is the
maximum width I could get through my planer).
I carefully glued the two sections together but when I checked it the
next day the sections had shifted almost 1/32" vertically with respect
to each other. My options were to rip the bench apart on this
glueline and try again or surface it manually, I don't have access to
large planers or belt sanders.
Tried my portable belt sander, seemed really slow Like you, I hadn't
used a handplane since I was a kid helping my Dad. Got out a #5 plane
I had bought years ago and never really used, sharpened it up and
started planing. Used a straightedge to mark the high areas and
planed them down, repeatedly checking with the straightedge until the
high spots were gone. In an hour I was done, top was dead flat
whichever way I laid the straightedge on it..
Getting your benchtop flattened commercially is a bargain. It will
save you the expense of buying a shop full of hand tools once you
realize what they can do and what a pleasure they are to use.
Ended up taking it to cabinet shop. They will run take of 3/32' via a huge
sander, followed by manual final sanding with orbital sander. So, when done,
flat and final sanded. Cost $50. I figure i done goood..
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