Question on Glue up of oak panels


I'm going to be laminating three layers of 3/4" oak panels to make a 36 x 23 panel approx 2-1/4" thick. I was planning on using Titebond 3, but after doing another part of the project that was 2 layers thick I found that both faces were convex due to only being able to clamp the edges of the panels. While, for 2 layers, this isn't catastrophic, I foresee problems when I go to the third layer. I'm thinking about putting wedges under my cawls near the middle of the panels as well as trying another type of glue. Any suggestions as to how to do this and keep my panels as flat as possible? Thanks in advance. Rich in Newport RI
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Sounds like a mess to me. I'd bet that expansion warps it, or maybe causes breaks. Is the middle level crossgrain to the others? Does the middle have to be oak? How about gluing up two panels and then screwing them to some soft ply as a core? Wilson

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23
both
possible?
You don't say what your panels are made of. Are you using oak plywood, or glued up oak boards?
As far as getting an even distribution of weight, why not just put them on a flat surface like the floor, and put a large weight on them? You could put a scrap over the top panel and throw a concrete block or two on top... or even more, across the surface of the pile. You don't need tons of clamp pressure to glue up boards. If you don't have warpage problems, and the panels lay flat against one another, you can get enough pressure just from the weight of a couple of blocks. Wedges will certainly work as well.
I would consider the existing convex condition to be something of a concern. It's an indication that you don't have an equal bond across the surface of the panels. That, all by itself would cause me to look at the flatness of my panels. Not to say it's a definite indicator that they aren't flat, but it would catch my eye and cause a closer examination.
Since you're building a sandwich you can also screw or nail the middle layer to the first outer layer when you do that initial glue-up. The heads will be hidden by the third layer and you'll be certain of a good bond across the surface of layers one and two.
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the panels.<
Glued up panels can be clamped with the use of cauls. These are heavy beams with screw jacks that can apply pressure over the whole surface. A quick and dirty method is to makeshift the cauls and use wood shims and wedges to apply pressure in the middle of the panels. Bugs
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Mike, inserted comments, below. Thanks for your input. You told me what I was thinking of doing, but it really reassured me more than anything.

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Is there some reason you can't use thicker wood? I have a bunch of 12/4 oak if you would like to buy it.
Was the wood flat before gluing? Logically the glue would make it swell, so it should not end up convex; so I expect they were convex before gluing; and there isn't much chance you would force them flat.
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Rich wrote:

Don't try to glue up the three layers into the final width...glue up several narrower stacks as needed for thickness, let them dry thoroughly, surface if necessary then edge glue those into your final width.
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In my instance this wouldn't be as strong.

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why? can't you make a hollow box such that it looks like it's 2.25" thick?
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Rich wrote:

This is a way to do it: <URL:http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=3&p1181&cat=1,41637>
Can't quiet handle your thickness though... Maybe you can make something similar.
JES
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Rich (in yZMxf.2880$7l4.1464@trndny03) said:
| I'm going to be laminating three layers of 3/4" oak panels to make | a 36 x 23 panel approx 2-1/4" thick. I was planning on using | Titebond 3, but after doing another part of the project that was 2 | layers thick I found that both faces were convex due to only being | able to clamp the edges of the panels. While, for 2 layers, this | isn't catastrophic, I foresee problems when I go to the third | layer. I'm thinking about putting wedges under my cawls near the | middle of the panels as well as trying another type of glue. | Any suggestions as to how to do this and keep my panels as flat as | possible? Thanks in advance.
A couple of these might help:
http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/PT_Glue.jpg
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
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Awesome looking tools. I was thinking of using something like that. I'll probably just use my cawls with wedges spaced across the width of the board. not as expensive.
said:

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wrote:

Why not edge-joint 2 1/4 thick oak ?
If you want to make 2" thick plywood, then you're going to need a press. Now this might just be a patio and an awful lot of bricks, but you need something.
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go read here:
<http://groups.google.com/group/rec.woodworking/browse_thread/thread/b47d1170270aa052/a61c8c4ab7ae533f?q=clamping+cauls&rnum #a61c8c4ab7ae533f>
or
<http://tinyurl.com/7novu
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SIMPLE.
Glue 2 panels face to face at a time and screw them together on the inner piece side until the glue dries. Remove the screws and repeat with the next panel until you get to the last panel.

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