Wood movement question


I'm building a cabinet. The top is solid white oak, 13 inches wide, 53 inches long, 3/4 inches thick. I'm not concerned about wood movement of the cabinet itself, because it's a panel-type construction. But for a top this size, is wood movement likely to be an issue? Can I simply glue the top on, or do I need to allow for expansion and contraction in the 13" direction?
Thanks in advance for your advice!
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Although white oak is relatively stable across its width, it does move and it most definitely is NOT a good idea to glue the top on.
Using cleats, attached to the sides of the casework, with screw holes slotted in the direction of movement to hold the top on, is a fairly simple, straightforward solution, among others.
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wrote in message

Or Z clips, or any number of commercial table-top fasteners. Remember where you are in fitting the clips. If you're in the wet season, build with room to contract. Dry, the opposite.
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I don't understand, if you are not concerned about movement in the cabinet, then the top is not part of the cabinet?
Cabinets usually have the sides with vertical grain, so it is the same as the top. In that case you can just glue. If your sides have horizontal grain, you would be pressing your luck to ignore movement.
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"Toller" wrote in message

cabinet,
Unless I totally misunderstood what the OP was trying to describe, think about what was said about the casework being "panel-type construction"(implication: panel sides/back in frame, probably with doors in face frame front).
Therefore carcass movement has most probably already been addressed with the above.
I've been known to be wrong more than a time or two, however ...
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Swingman wrote:

Meaning the sides are frame and panel.

It is possible, though uncommon to make a cabinet top also frame and panel. I recall reading an article in one of the woowdorking magazines about a particular furniture maker who did that with dressers and such.
Or, if it not going to show, the top can be made of plywood.
Otherwise the cleat or clip solution will work too.
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Okay, I get it now. Wish I had something clever to say now...
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Toller wrote:

[snip]
LOL! A simple "Aw shit! I missed that" should work. I use it all the time<g>
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If the top is joined cross-grained along it's full width best to use some type of fastener or joinery that will allow movement. IIRC, oak can expand & contract more than 1/8" per foot with normal humidity swings.
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Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
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If the grain "wraps" around the corners (ie- runs in the same direction") the top and sides (and bottom) should move together. You could biscuit them together (into the side grain of the sides, end grain of the top and bottom or dove tail them, pins on the top and bottom, tails on the ends of the sides.
charlie b
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OP checking in again. Sorry for any confusion. As Swingman correctly deduced, the sides are frame-and-panel, and the front is a frame with doors. So wood movement shouldn't be an issue for the main body of the cabinet. I guess the reason I posted the question was the fact that this is a relatively narrow top, and I wasn't sure if there would be enough potential movement over 13" to make it worth worrying about. The consensus is that there is. It will be easy to attach the top using cleats or clips, as suggested. Thanks for the advice, everyone!
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