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-   -   Rookie mistake - question about smoothing out an "oops" (http://www.diychatroom.com/f14/rookie-mistake-question-about-smoothing-out-oops-68351/)

brich 04-05-2010 11:56 AM

Rookie mistake - question about smoothing out an "oops"
 
My wife is a Halloween nut and I decided to take a stab at building her a small bookshelf that resembles a coffin. I was pretty pleased with the mitered cuts I made because, for the most part, they all fit (will need some filler but since it's my first time I am not too upset about this).

The major mistake I made is that I did not check the boards very well (:furious:) when I bought them and they are "cupped" when you look at the ends.

The boards are already nailed (18ga finish nails) together and the piece is currently in my garage with a band clamp holding it together until I put the shelves and 1/4" plywood backing in.

I can post pictures later but I think I can explain what I'm trying to do:

For example, where two boards meet one is cupped and the other is straight. Is there a product I can use to fill the "gap" that I have to make it appear straight once it is painted? I'm thinking something that I can fill in and then sand/scrape to appear flush to the straight board's edge.

Sorry if this is a horrible description - at work right now and I can post pictures later if necessary.

Just thought I'd throw this out there to see if anyone could sympathize and provide some insight.

Thanks in advance.

DangerMouse 04-05-2010 12:00 PM

Is there a chance you can add some glue and clamp the curl out?
Pics would surely help, yupyupyup!
But....even if they don't, I'm sure our members would love to see this project!

DM

Ron6519 04-05-2010 01:39 PM

Generally, part of the process to prep the wood, would be to put it through a planer to eliminate the cupping. As Danger suggested, it might be possible to glue, clamp and nail to flatten out a cup on a wide board. It's hard to do on a narrow board.
If you're painting this coffin, a good wood filler will help.
Ron

jlhaslip 04-05-2010 01:58 PM

You 'might' be able to sand/plane the high point(s) of the cupped piece back into submission.
This is a tricky procedure, so don't expect miracles.

brich 04-05-2010 08:53 PM

Thanks for the responses.

Had some time to work on the shelf more tonight so I'm also uploading some pictures I've taken.

Here is the mistake I was referring to. What I would like to do is somehow fill in the area "inside" the cupped face of the board on the right side of the picture. Note that the bottom of the joint is somewhat flush. The top of it (hidden under tape/out of frame) is nearly flush as well. In my mind (burst my bubble if I'm crazy) I'm imagining filling this with some sort of compound that will harden to a sandable surface. Before hardening I could scrape the two "high" edges of the cupped board and therefore smooth it out, making it more "visually pleasing" at the joint. Does any of this make sense?

Also, since some pictures were requested, here you go:

Banded

Top

Top joint

Backer board traced and cut

Upright and ready for shelves



Some things I'm not pleased with are the two "outermost" joints. I originally drew it up using a very steep miter, but was brought down to earth when I realized I could not cut a 60+ degree miter with my miter saw (in hindsight I could have made a jig I suppose - I do not have a miter box and I'm not sure if one would have the necessary angle). I instead opted to bisect the angle at which the two boards met.

Does anyone have any recommendations for such a joining?

This is my first major "fun" project. I built the workbench in the background after Christmas, which is when I got the miter saw (Harbor Freight... don't laugh!).

Any constructive criticism would be VERY much appreciated coming from people more skilled than I.

Thanks!

lanemiller 04-06-2010 03:20 PM

That's a really cool project, is it a surprise for your wife or does she know it's coming? You won't get a whole lot of criticism from me, I remember my first few projects. I still have all of them!

brich 04-07-2010 09:25 AM

My wife knows it's coming but she doesn't go out to the garage much so every now and then she'll walk out and rave about it which makes me feel a little better about it!

I bought some vinyl spackling and tried it on a test piece I made out of two scraps that were warped. My idea on how to smooth them out seemed to work well enough but I'll look at the test piece tonight to see how it turns out.

Can't wait to start another project so I can include the steps/etc. that I've learned doing the first one.

lanemiller 04-07-2010 10:39 AM

it's a really cool project. I've built quite a few things, in my old house I built a monster of an entertainment center, with 4 4'x10' bookcases, with cabinets underneath, that you could sit on, and then the huge fireplace/mantle looking thing for the old big screen tv, with a large shelf on top where the stained glass window was. It was all solid oak, and we finished all of it ourselves. I've been through many projects before I tackled that one though.

moorewarner 04-07-2010 11:04 AM

Nice work. :thumbsup:

For fill on this, to be painted, I would use regular old Bondo. You can pick some up at Lowes or HD. It will be strong enough to hold in spite of any flex.

When you fill, just use a putty knife and a board to mix, put it on as tight as you can. It doesn't shrink and can be tedious to sand.

brich 04-07-2010 12:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by moorewarner (Post 425271)
Nice work. :thumbsup:

For fill on this, to be painted, I would use regular old Bondo. You can pick some up at Lowes or HD. It will be strong enough to hold in spite of any flex.

When you fill, just use a putty knife and a board to mix, put it on as tight as you can. It doesn't shrink and can be tedious to sand.

Just so I'm clear - bondo as in body filler? Just making sure I'm not missing out on some trade term... :whistling2:

moorewarner 04-07-2010 02:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by brich (Post 425332)
Just so I'm clear - bondo as in body filler? Just making sure I'm not missing out on some trade term... :whistling2:

Bondo as in body filler.:yes:

lanemiller 04-07-2010 02:16 PM

I have NEVER used bondo before, well except for on the bottom of a skimboard :p

Jay123 04-08-2010 08:38 AM

Bondo works very well for paint-grade work, don't ask me how I know :whistling2:


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