Proper wood

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My wife wants new curtains in the living room, and wants me to cut out special shaped brackets for the curtains. They will basically be half oval with additional wood to attach each bracket to the wall.
To cut the half ovals the grains would be both horizontal and vertical across the oval, so it seems there would be no way to maximize the grain to minimize splits.
Can some one recommend the best wood for this application or a technique to minimize splitting.
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On 9/6/2012 4:54 PM, Keith Nuttle wrote:

...
Can't really visualize what your brackets really are, but clearly ply would be the most stable/strong of a given thickness that wouldn't be terribly bulky. Use a paper-backed edging veneer to cover the edge(s)...
If solid, any of the hardwoods would undoubtedly be sufficiently strong unless these are really heavy drapes or somesuch...just stay away from the common framing lumber pines, cedar, etc., they're the ones that are most prone to split along a grain line w/o much provocation.
Again, pictures would undoubtedly help, even if it's just an example of what SWMBO thinks she wants...
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On 9/6/2012 5:54 PM, Keith Nuttle wrote:

Ply... resaw you desired wood and veneer it to the faces and to the edging.
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On Thu, 06 Sep 2012 17:54:39 -0400, Keith Nuttle

Plywood. With edge tape to hide the ugly end-grain.
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+1
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??? I don't understand. If you draw an oval on a piece of wood, does the orientation of the grain not depend on which way you cut it in half (assuming the cut edge is against the wall)?
What am I missing?
But plywood is a good answer to any strength issue as long as you don't want something more interesting than maple, birch, oak, etc.
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On 9/6/2012 10:00 PM, Dave Balderstone wrote:

The thought was to draw the oval on the flat surface of the wood, and then cut the bracket out. This would cause the gran to be perpendicular to the plan of the oval.
I like the plywood idea and if there is no way out I will cut all 14 of them from one piece of plywood and laminate.
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On Thu, 06 Sep 2012 22:41:41 -0400, Keith Nuttle

Use wood half the thickness you want. Cut 14 blanks with the grain in one direction, cut 14 blanks with the grain in the opposite, glue together and cut the shape.
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On 9/6/2012 10:46 PM, Mike Marlow wrote:

because as you cut around the curve of the circle the grain will go from parallel to perpendicular.
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Unless you center it on a large knot around which the grain flows. ;~)
John
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On 9/7/2012 9:38 AM, John Grossbohlin wrote:

That is a good idea, as I could then knock the knot out and not have as much cutting ;~)
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I'm sitting here looking at a piece of maple with a circle drawn on it.
Grain is oriented north-south. I bisect that circle with a line running north-south. All the grain in both halves runs parallel to the flat edge.
I bisect that circle with a line running east-west, and rotate the hald 90 degrees so the flat is oriented with the previous, north-south, flat edge. ALL the grain in both halves runs perpendicular to the flat edge.
So I can align the grain in any direction I choose. QED.
I still can't understand the issue you are describing, where you end up with a mix of grain direction.
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On 9/7/2012 10:16 AM, Dave Balderstone wrote:

If you do not look at the surface but the ends as you rotate the board, you will see that in one direction you are looking at the end grain and in the other you are looking at the side of the grain. Or across the grain in the first orientation and parallel to the grain in the other.
My concern is the bracket piece when the endgrain is visble on the side of the cut out bracket.
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Ah. Gotcha. Then I would definitely use plywood with an edge banding.
Your original post said nothing about appearance, only strength re: splitting, so that's where I misunderstood.
Thanks for the clarification.
djb
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On Fri, 07 Sep 2012 08:16:43 -0600, Dave Balderstone

if the grain runs horrizontal it will be weak in the vertical plane. If the grain runs vertical it will be weak in the horizontal plane, and if it runs on the bias it will be weak in both planes. So either the bracket will split horizontally from the forces exerted by the rod and gravity, or it will split vertically from any other forces exerted on the bracket by the rod.
The only realistic solution other than plywood with an edge banding is to use hardwood and drill across the grain to install dowelling to re-enforce the cross-grain.
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On Fri, 7 Sep 2012 22:16:48 -0400, "Mike Marlow"

Forget that it's a bracket. IF splitting is an issue - and we do not know for sure that it is or will be, cross doweling it is a well proven method of preventing the splitting. It is, if not THE only realistic solution, certainly one of the few simple effective solutions.
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On Fri, 7 Sep 2012 22:59:44 -0400, "Mike Marlow"

Yes - but the principal is valid even if it is NOT a bracket - which means it is still valid for a bracket IF splitting is an issue on the bracket design in question.
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On Fri, 07 Sep 2012 08:16:43 -0600, Dave Balderstone

Maybe he is in the southern hemisphere where the grain runs opposite.
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Keith Nuttle wrote:

The same is true if you don't cut it at all...there are two sides (parallel to grain) and two ends (perpendicular to grain).
Frankly, I think you are worrying about nothing. I think you could use *any* wood without having to worry about the weight of the rod and curtain material splitting the brackets.
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wrote:

Certainly not cedar - and I wouldn't trust spruce either. Maple, Mahogany, oak, birch, and most other hardwoods would stand a fair chance - but drilling across grain and gluing in dowells would improve the durability of any hardwood significantly.
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