Warped Wood Question

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    Steve Giles


    I have a very specific question about working with a warped piece of wood which I’d be grateful if someone could answer.

    After using it for about three years, I’m actually just now getting around to completing my workbench build! lol

    Unfortunately, one of the laminated top sections has warped, and so when I clamp it to the side section (as if I were about to glue it in place), it twists the whole bench so that it is standing on only three of its legs. I would estimate that one of the legs is about 1/4” off the ground. If I physically climb onto the bench and sit on it, this forces it to straighten out.

    My question is this: If I glue it up as-is, will the warped section of wood eventually ‘relax’ and the bench settle on all four legs or will the wood act as a permanent ‘spring’? I could use sand bags to keep weight on it for an extended period of time if necessary.

    Thanks in advance!

    Benoît Van Noten

    No it will not relax. The underside of my bench-top was not flattened correctly. I had to place a shim somewhere between a leg-frame-bearing and the bench-top before screwing the bench-top to the leg-frame in order to get the four feet on the ground.

    If your bench-top is not already glued to the front apron the best thing to do is to flatten its underside out of twist.
    Note: if you don’t want to flatten the entire underside, you can take out of twist only the two (underside) areas of the bench-top which will sit on the two leg-frames. It should be OK as the other areas don’t play any role in the final geometry.
    The front edge of the bench-top should be perpendicular to the two sitting areas.

    Steve Giles

    Thanks Benoit for your reply. Not what I wanted to hear but that’s life! Your suggestion is good, but I’m thinking of just making a new section for it. Maybe I can find a less critical use somewhere else for the old piece of wood. I’ll give it some consideration anyway and decide. It’s the back section BTW; I glued the front section at the time I was building the bench, and encountered no problems with it.

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