1x2 edging won't require great force. Attach two wooden blocks to the
2x with screws and glue, the blocks set a bit wider than the required
clamping distance, and use wedges to apply the clamping force.
There are lots of ways to improvise clamps. I used to do what you are doing
without *any* pipe clamps. I used the fence of my radial saw one one side;
for the other, I clamped a 2x4 to the table and used wedges with it. No
reason you can't clamp or nail a couple of 2x4s to a piece of plywood and
use wedges on both sides.
I have an assortment of ply and solid wood scrap for buffering clamp
jaws. For non-stick surfaces, I have some scrap laminent flooring
Often times, I have furniture that needs repair/reclamping (during the
upholstery process). The surfaces are finished, so I have a dozen or
so blocks wrapped with scrap upholstery fabric (stapled on the
backside), that prevents marring the furniture finish.
That idea appeals to my practical side (which is all sides really), but
wouldn't wedges apply pressure unevenly, perhaps putting the pieces out
of square? I must not be visualizing it right. Maybe you use two wedges
facing in opposite directions, laying down on their sides?
Makes sense. If you wouldn't mind furthering my education (again) should
I decide to make myself some wedges, what angle do you recommend?
This could become useful pretty soon, as the desktop I'm making is 6
feet long. I have actually unearthed one very old bar clamp of
sufficient length (among the debris of an old plumber/kitchen
installer), but one clamp won't do the job. I could buy some longer
pieces of pipe, but this idea intrigues me.
Never measured so I just did...they are about 18 degrees.
The less the angle the greater the mechanical advantage but you also have to
move them more to "spread" them a given distance.
Mine are fine for me. One tip, don't smooth the mating edges...if they are
rough there is much less tendency for them to slip (which has never been a
problem for me).
Larry Jaques mentioned cam clamps. They are handy too. In case you don't
know what they are, they are cut out of a piece of plywood (usually) and
look like a giant comma. The head of the comma is fastened down via an off
center hole; when you rotate the tail of the comma, the distance of the
head - being off center - to whatever you are clamping varies.
To keep your cork or other facing material in place, use double sided
tape behind it. It will hold until the clamp is lined up. I use carpet
tape to do this, it is better than double sided scotch tape. If you take
it off the clamp as soon as you are done, very little adhesive stays
behind to clean up.
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