Newbie help with potential project.

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Thinking about atempting to copy one of these to build for my sons room.
http://www.furnishingsontheweb.com/NoFrame/Items/027123nf.html
Could I build each post out of plywood? Dado the endges of the plywood and glueing togther to form a "box" sort of? Would it be strong enough to hold the metal bed frame?
How would the top "sill" board attach to the hollow box?
The problem is, I dont know where I could find a solid oak post to match the rest of the bed.
Also, been re thinking the free wood idea. (My white oak). WOuld it be batter to buy red oak boards from home depot or something? Is white oak hard to work with and stain? Seems like in the back of my mind there was something I read about white oak staining unevenly. Not sure if that is true.
On the bed I would mortise and tennon all the board attached to the posts and glue everything real good. Planed on making the frame out of angle iron and welding togther.
Thanks for your help!
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stryped wrote:

Yes. But the ply edges would show. A better way is fasten inset glue strips along both inside edges of two pieces and glue up all four pieces so there is a square, empty area along all four edges...then fill the empty part with solid wood. ___________

Yes. It would hold up100s of them. Maybe 1000s. ____________

One way...put a wood plug in the top of each "post" and screw to that. Or let the plug or portion thereof stand proud and glue into a mortice in the top piece. ____________

1. Lumberyard
2. Make your own by gluing up thinner boards ______________

White oak is a much nicer wood than red. YMMV _____________

White oak is a nice wood to work with as long as you have sharp tools.
Why do you have this fixation on staining? Why use nice wood then cover up its natural color with <ugh> stain?
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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Wife wants a light oak stain for the sons room.
Can simply gluing the top sill to the hollow post be acceptable? What if I mortise and tennon the posts?
What I meant was I cant find white oak posts.
Can you tell if this wood I have is white oak: http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/ashleedalton/album?.dir }65&.src=ph&store=&prodid=&.done=http%3a//photos.yahoo.com/ph//my_photos
No one can give me a definitive answr.
Also, as you can see those boards are not long enough for my sill plate. How can I get by that?
Thanks!
dadiOH wrote:

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It's real hard to tell in person, even harder from pictures.

You could try to cook up some sort of interesting joint. Or maybe some decroative piece in the center or something. You won't be able to hide it though. I would go out and gets boards that are long enough from a lumber yard.
brian
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stryped wrote:

Does wife have the foggiest idea of what white oak looks like when topcoated but not stained???? Show her. _______________

No _________________
Yes, same as making a plug into a mortice. Either way would reguire considerable precision and you are probably better off by gluing/screwing a piece of solid wood into the top of each post and attahing the top piece with screws/glue into that. ___________________

One can buy 12/4, 16/4 white oak. Or make it. __________________

I can't either from the pictures but it looks like it. You can tell yourself by putting some paint on an end...does the paint get sucked up? Red oak. You could damn near drink lemonade through a piece of red oak. _____________________

Uhhhh...use two pieces? You could scarf them together but the grain will never look quite right. Other possibilities...
1. Buy a couple of longer pieces
2. Make a bunch of short pieces all the same thickness & width and glue them up randomly into one. It will look hodgepodge but a *planned* hodgepodge. Not beautiful but not unattractive either.
3. Modify the Mission design a bit by adding another "post" in the center of both foot and headboards. Make it bigger than the posts in those pieces but smaller(?) than the end ones. Then cap the head/foot boards with two pieces with a somewhat thicker piece the size of the post in the middle. Ditto to a thicker piece above each outboard post. IOW, make it look like the top rails go *into* the posts rather than cover them.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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I am new o this. WHen you say top coated to you mean a clear top coat, such as polyurathane? How does white oak look like this?
Also, that wood I recieved for free was from a florring company. It is rough cut wood before being cut and planed. (But has been kiln dried). I think I heard it was either number one or two. Would it still look ok top coated or stained? What if I had to buy some wood that was FAS? would the two different typed look good together?
Thanks!
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stryped wrote:

Yes ___________
How does white oak look like this?
A pretty medium brown. About the color of the bed you linked to originally. Try it and see, sand first. Or just sand a chunk and spit on it. _____________

The grade of wood has no particular effect on how it looks when finished. All it indicates is the quantity of clear wood that can be cut from a particular piece. The lower the grade the less clear wood; i.e., the more knots, splits, etc. One can save considerable $$ buy buying lower grades unless lots of big, clear pieces are needed; normally, that isn't the case. ______________

Again, grade has no effect on how it is going to look. There is variation in how different pieces of wood will look even if they come from the same tree; however, one piece of white oak will be similar to another regardless of grade. BTW, unless you need two clear sides, "select" is a better buy than FAS.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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Yes.
Dado the endges of the plywood

If the hardware attaches with screws they will most likely strip out sooner than later.

Put a solid plug in the top of the bed post and dowel the top rail from the bottom into the post plug.

Most good lumber yards will have solid oak posts however it would be cheaper to glue up 5 or 6 1x4's to form your own post.

Home Depot is probably going to be the most expensive place to buy hard wood, most any thing for that matter.
Is white oak

No.
Seems like in the back of my mind there

If you are working with Quarter sawn white oak the flecs tend to appear a bit lighter than the rest of the wood. IMHO that is a good thing.
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If you do that, you'll see at least part of the plywood edges. You could miter the four sides, but that will be tough to get perfect, and the corners will be ultra-delecate. Usually, people lightly chamfer the corners of posts like that to prevent them from denting. You wouldn't be able to do that in this case. If I were to make this, I would do one of these three things:
I would go out and buy some nice quarter-sawn white oak and resaw them down to 1/8" thick boards, then cut some birch ply and but joint them in the corners with biscuits, then glue the oak veneers on.
Or, I would just build the posts as you desribe out of 3/4" oak boards, but miter them somehow, maybe with one of those cool router bits that make interlocking miters.
Or I would glue up some 3/4" boards to make a larger board. In this case, you could also veneer some 1/8" quarter-sawn to the sides that don't have the medulary ray patern. That would also hide the fact that it's a glue-up.

I think a plywood box would do just fine assuming you can anchor the bed hardware securely.

Biscuits? That would attach it securely and avoid screws or something. Or you could just screw though the face, counter-sink them, then plug the holes with something that looks nice, like ebony squares or just plain oak plugs. Then endgrain of the plugs will stand out and make a good accent.

Any hardwood lumber supplier could probably find 8/4 or 12/4 oak, but that would be ultra expensive. And if you were trying to get the cool quarter-sawn pattern, you would only have it on two sides. Option 3 above would fix that.

As far as working is concerned, I doubt white would be any different from red. (although I've only ever used red). Just make sure you use the same type for the whole bed. I wouldn't by anything other than plywood from home depot. You'll get a far better product for less money if you buy rough-sawn lumber yourself, even if you get them to plane and joint it for you.
I think oak stains nicely and easily. It is open-grained though so if you're after a glass-smooth finish, you'll have to fill the pores. If it were me, I would go after a mission type finish and use quartersawn white oak.

mortise and tennon the foot board to its two posts. The same for the headboard. For the rails, make them out of oak to match and buy bed hardware from lee valley or somewhere similar. You'll be able to disassemble the bed, the hardware is hidden, and it;s plenty strong.
It's an ambitious project for a beginner. But you can do it. Go slow. My first project was a 3' diamter table for the little kids to eat at in the kitchen. I made it out of poplar with bench top tools and set 16 tiles with fish on them into the top. Painted blue. The family is still using it and they think it's great. Every time I look at it, I see all the mistakes I made.
The second project I made was a canopy bed, painted pink, made from s-dry cedar. It didn't warp and turned out great. My only mistake on that one was that I cut these keyhole shaped things in the posts and used nuts and bolts to secure the rails to the head and foot boards. Eventually, they worked loose. To hold up the mattress and box spring, I screwed a 2x4 to the rails. The screws pulled out of one of them. If I were to do it again, I would use the bed hardware instead of the bolts and probably route a dado down the rails, then put a piece of wood in teh dado as a shelf for the box spring.
brian
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wrote:

You could wrap the plywood with 3/4" oak, get quartersawn for 2 sides and flatsawn for the other 2. If you have a good color match and put the joint on the quartersawn sides it should be hard to spot the joint, and it'll be a lot easier than trying to miter the corners. You could then do whatever edge treatment on the corners you like. You can probably even skip the inner plywood. But you're probably going to have to go to a real lumberyard to get the quartersawn anyway, unless you get lucky in the home depot stacks, so if they have a suitable post you may as well save yourself the trouble.
In the picture in the link it doesn't look like they are solid posts to me. You can see the post on the right has flatsawn grain which doesn't go all the way to the right edge, so my guess is they used butt jointed flatsawn wood in the original. It could be an illusion from the compression of the image though.
-Leuf
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Thinking of purchaseing a small table top planer and jointer.if I have to plane/joint all this lumber, would the planer last? (Or jointer). How often do you have to change blades in those things?
By the way, I am a newbie to woorworking. If I decide to just use solid wood wood to make a box for the posts and just use glue to glue it together with a dado, is that acceptable?
Also, how do I tell if my lumber is quarter sawn and what are the advantages of that?
Thanks!
Leuf wrote:

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Bench top planers are fairly good. Benchtop jointers are really bad. For both, you'll want dust collection so make sure there's a hood. For the smaller machines, a shop vac would probably work. I used both without dust collection and was able to get by. One of the planers comes with a fan I think that helps with chip extraction. The delta benchtop jointer is a good example of what not to get. You'll have a hard time jointing anything longer than about 4' with it. Instead, I'd get one of the floor standing jointers from grizzly. The longer the tables the better.

You could rebate (pronounced rabbit) the sides, a dado would be down the center of the board. Yellow wood glue would work just fine. Technically, you don't really need even the rebate. Since it's long grain to long grain, the joint would be plenty strong just with glue assuming the boards were flat and you clamped correctly. The boards will move around on you that way though so it will be hard to keep them flush. Most people use something like a biscuit jointer to help line things up. You could also cut square end blocks to help hold things in alignment.

Look at the end grain on the boards. If they're curved like a happy or frowny face, it's flat sawn. If the grain lines go (mostly) up and down perpendicular to the face of the board, it's quartersawn.

Generally, in any wood, quartersawn wood will be more stable. Flatsawn wood has the tendancy to cup. If you look at the smily-face pattern in the end grain, the end of the board will make a frowny-face pattern down the length of the board. The amount of cup will vary by species, tree, humidity, and moisture content. Quartersawn white oak is special though in that it makes these light colored stripes that run roughly across the grain on the face of the board. The picture of the bed you provided looks like the mission style (although with the wrong finish) which was famous for using this type of wood. Go a google search for mission style furniture or medulary (sp?) rays. You'll see what I'm talking about. The side of the boards don't show this, only the face, which is why a solid 12/4 post or glue-up would have that pattern only on two sides. Red oak doesn't have this ray pattern. Quartersawn wood is generally significantly more expensive that flatsawn wood since there's more waste for the lumber mill.
brian
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If you don't joint and plane the lumber yourself it's going to have warped somewhat by the time you've gotten it. So you just need help getting it lined up, the glue joint by itself as all the strength you need. You'll definitely have an easier time if you run dados (actually a rabbet, a dado is a groove running against the grain) on the edge, or use a biscuit joiner. You'll need LOTS of clamps though. Do a dry fit before you put any glue on anything.

Basically they are just cut from the log differently. What would be the face of a flatsawn board is the edge of the quatersawn board and vice versa. So the edge of the flatsawn board will be very similar to the face of the quartersawn board, and the grain will be basically straight so it will match better.
http://www.loyalistforest.com/?page=quartersawn_whiteoak
-Leuf
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How many boards can I run through a planer (white oak) before the blades become a problem? Is this number 2 wood ok to use in this project?
I appreciate all your help!
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I'd say one set of knives will easily get you through the project unless you hit a nail or otherwise nick the blades. I sold my bench top jointer before I ever changed the knives. I'm also still on my original set of planer knives. I've done maybe four projects with rough sawn lumber. I've been doing a lot of casework lately with plywood so no planer useage.
It's hard to say how many boards you can send through since it depends on the length, width, harness, grittiness, knots, luck, and other factors. I wouldn't worry about it for a few projects at least. Many people have considered the cost of rough-sawn vs s4s while also considering the cost of new blades or sharpening. Suffice it to say that it's easily worth it to plane your own rough sawn lumber. Especially since you also get the abiity to fine-tune the thickness of boards. Also if you resaw, you'll want to run the resawn boards through the planer afterwards assuming they're not too thin. And you can correct boards that cupped, bowed, or warped after the lumber yard planed them. You can also end up with thicker boards. Some mills will take 4/4 stock and plane it straight to 3/4". If you got that same stock and it was relatively flat already, you may end up with boards that are 7/8" when you're done. You could also resaw them in the rough to reduce waste.
Number 2 refers to how many defects there are in the wood like knots or checks or weird grain. If you like the looks of the wood, use it. Who cares how they graded it. It will have virtually no affect on the planer unless you hit a knot.
The machines will probably come with high speed steel knives, which are sharper but dull faster. You can get carbide blades for most any machine. They're a lot harder and will stay slightly less sharp for a lot longer, but are more expensive. Of course, if you hit some metal or grit, all bets are off regardless. I decided to stay with hss knives and get the planer knife jig for my tormek which I haven't tried yet.
brian
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Just had a thought, how would the "base" go into the hollow posts? I assume the mortise and tennon is out because the box will be hollow?
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You could screw through the bottom of the feet into the 3/4" boards on the post. You could also make a plywood square to fill the hole at the end of the post. I would use pocket hole screws to hold it in place. Then you could screw through the foot into that. Or, if you have a biscuit jointer, you could put biscuits in the bottom of the post and the top of the foot, then glue it in place. Or you could put a glueblock inside the post near the top of the post, the run a bolt through the foot. If you glue right to the end grain on the bottom of the post without a dowel or biscuit or something, the end grain will soak up the glue before it dries starving the joint. I think the chemical reaction in the glue doesn't work well with end grain also. Anyway, the end result is that the joint will be really weak and the feet will break off easily.
If it were me, I'd opt for the glue-up of 3/4" boards. That way it would behave like a real 12/4 board when you go to cut the mortises or install the bed hardware. It will be a lot heavier though which is good or bad depending on your perspective. If I were concerned about the medulary rays, I'd cut a 1/8" veneer and glue that to the sides. I'd probably put the foot on with biscuits or maybe a short tennon.
brian
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Having a hard time understangin. I am talking about how the horizontal long pieces the slates go into. How will that board attach to a hollow corner post? Typically these are tennons but that wont work into the side of the hollow post, right? brianlanning wrote:

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Ah. sorry, i misunderstood. Yeah, it would make the mortise situation a little less than ideal. I think it would work, but you'd only have the bottom 3/4" of the tennon glued with the rest of the tennon hanging in mid air. Chances are, this would be enough. But it would be safer to glue up boards and have a solid post. Alternatively, you could get a small oak block, sized to fit, and glue it inside the post right where you want to put the mortises. That would work well.
How are you going to cut the mortises for the spindles?
brian
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I am new to this and have never cut a mortise. Was thinking of using my router table and a straight bit. What do you think?
I like the idea of all the boards glued togther but I dont have alot of equipment yet and am afraid of not getting the boards exactly right in the width which would not look right makeing a solid post. Not sure though. brianlanning wrote:

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