I am 97% finished with the kitchen I have been working on, and
remembered a question I wanted to ask here.
Seems everyone wants crown molding somewhere in their homes. In
kitchen I am wrapping up I used it over the cab uppers to give the
cabinets a bit more dimension. It was painted (along with the
valance) the same color as the cabinets to fool the eye by adding a
longer dimension since the cabinets weren't replaced.
A couple of folks liked the idea, and we are now flirting with me
coming to their houses after the holidays to do something similar.
When I was putting up the pre-primed crown, there were paint drips on
the edges (not face) of the crown making it unstable in the miter
box. All the trim was that way, and unless I stood and scraped two
feet on each side of a joint, it screwed up my fit. I can't leave
this for the guys applying the finish; that's me.
This is the third time lately I have bought preprimed product that had
big boxes showed all theirs to be the same, and apparently our local
hardwood supplier (that charges 30% more than the boxes) sells what
looks to be the same crap.
It takes too much time to stand and scrape the primer around the soon
to be joints. Some of the primer is really soft, but some is really
All of it is a pain in the ass to remove and a waste of time.
Trying to get around this problem, I was wondering if anyone has used
the crown stops (DW7084)? I don't need a cutting guide, a miter stop,
a gauge, etc., and don't want anything that will clamp inside the bed
on the saw to take away from its capacity.
I know I could get around this by cutting the moldings flat, but it
takes me too long to do it. Nesting makes cutting crown like cutting
base molding, and flat cutting makes it too hard for me to see my
pencil marks to cut off a degree or two.
And unless it is simply too wide to cut nested, I always cut crown
nested. And my thumb has been my clamp for 25 years of crown molding,
but that also means I can feel the movement (not to mention see the
results) of the material moving on the primer drops.
Worse, the primer drops keep the molding from nesting at the proper
install angle to be cut. Amazing what one drop or heavy primer can do
to your joints. Even more amazing how pissed off it will make you
when you have to allow extra time for its effects.
So will crown stops for the miter box do the trick on primed molding?
At $22, they would easily pay for themselves on one job.
Thoughts? Experiences? Anyone got a better idea?
So for starters -- don't try to cut the molding flat -- I tried that,
but it takes more time, is less accurate, etc. My experience was with
5" molding, so even a fraction of a degree was very visible, and after
many attempts cutting it flat, I decided it wasn't the way to go.
I found it better to brace the piece in the miter saw at the correct
angle, cut it, try it, and if it didn't fit perfectly adjust the miter
ever so slightly, until it was perfect (for longer pieces which were
length dependent, I did my tests on a scrap piece until it fit
perfectly, and used that setting to cut the long piece).
What I ended up doing was creating a few braces to hold my pieces at
the correct angle. Each brace was simply a piece of wood cut at 45
degrees, such that the long end was exactly the length of the back of
the molding. I rested the molding against several braces for each
cut. This way the molding was always cut at the perfect angle -- no
room for slop.
Now, about your paint drip problem: First off, I would look into
getting better primed moldings without paint drops. If you can't do
that, get unprimed moldings, and prime afterwords. If you can't do
any of those two, another suggestion would be to take the braces I
described, and glue 1/4"x3/4" flat pieces of wood to the bottoms and
sides, that protrude out a little. This way the molding rests only on
two to four points, which you adjust such that they are not over any
paint drops. Excuse the ascii art, but the side profile of the brace
would look like this:
and it would be 3/4" thick. The braces will likely be more accurate
than the miter stops you are looking at.
Also, in the category of "learn from my mistakes", I spent a few
minutes embedding a few rare earth magnets onto my braces, as I
thought it would help hold them in place. As it turned out, my
mitersaw base was aluminum, so they had no effect. It turns out they
worked fine without the magnets.
(Here's a picture of my crown molding: www.ulvr.com/john/train)
Like I said, I don't like to do that. But if cutting extra wide
molding is part of a job, you do what you have to do, right?
It is easy enough with practice to cut the moldings flat, and in some
cases it may be the only way you can cut the larger crown moldings.
Or those with difficult to handle profiles. You will be proficient
with a good saw and blade after a few houses of the big stuff, though.
LOL... thanks for he heads up! DOH!
No.... don't think I will be priming as much as a few hundred feet
I am not looking to add steps to the process of a remodel, and I don't
think my clients would appreciate the extra time and hassle of
spraying, and I don't like brush marks unless they are unavoidable.
I appreciate the post and the time you spent on it, but after years of
installing crown, I actually don't have trouble with my cuts or fits.
Unless there are large, hard drips on the molding to throw off the way
the molding sits in the saw.
I am just looking for a fast, easy fix I don't have to think about.
Like your train page and setup. Looks like a pretty neat setup!
The paint drops should be easily dealt with with a couple passes of a
good sharp block plane with an open throat. I cant say that we have
ever had much pre-primed with drips but we dont do much painted trim.
We have however had drips on pre-finished urethaned trim and a good
sharp plane takes care of it hard or soft. If its gummy it may be
another issue but I would think if its not wet enough to prime your
hands while handling it a block plane should suffice.
On Fri, 12 Dec 2008 10:39:41 -0800 (PST), Father Haskell
...I use a 12" DeWalt CM for cutting crown, and I bought the stops
when I bought the saw 12 years ago. I've used 'em many times, and
forgot to bring 'em many times, too. That said, your issue is to get
the stuff laying against the fence and table correctly, so I don't
think the stops would help that...the material still would not sit
right. I've ran into your problem once or twice and just pulled that
little Stanley rasp out (you know, the one that shaves drywall really
good) and bye-bye booger.
As an aside, I've tried to cut on the flat, too. Bought the book,
which was cheap, and bought that trick little 7" Makita slider, which
wasn't so cheap (but a great little saw, doncha know)...successfully
cut a whole house that way and next crown job went back to the ol'
DeWalt. The little saw now comes in handy for furniture projects!
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