Author Topic: Cutoffs/Scraps  (Read 3461 times)

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Offline johnmocha

  • Posts: 39
« on: March 13, 2013, 09:52 PM »
Any thoughts on when (size wise, material,etc.) you pitch cutoffs/scraps versus keeping them?  Do you have your own standard criteria for when you'll keep material?  I love to be frugal but I don't want to end up being a hoarder!

PS- This is a such a great board with friendly chats!  I really appreciate it. 

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Offline RL

  • Posts: 3040
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2013, 10:10 PM »
I keep the rip cut-offs in a dustbin. Smaller cut-offs go into two small boxes, one for small and one for larger pieces. When the boxes get full I sort them out and start again. Generally I only keep the best pieces. The rest goes for firewood.

Offline JayStPeter

  • Posts: 401
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2013, 10:36 PM »

Hoard until you fill your alloted space, then reorg and start again.  When you start going beyond your alloted space, that's when you have problems.  I had scraps piled in every corner, nook and cranny in my shop and had to spend two entire weekends cleaning it all out.  Took a heaping pickup load to the dump.  I built bins for scrap and don't plan to let it go over that again.
Jay St. Peter

Offline Jesse Cloud

  • Posts: 1750
  • Festooling at the end of a dirt road in New Mexico
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2013, 11:40 PM »
Personally, unless its something very special, I never keep anything too small to mill - for me that means one foot long.

But I'll confess to a lot of 1-3 foot pieces hanging around just getting in the way. [embarassed]

Offline SRSemenza

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  • Finger Lakes Region, NY State , USA
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2013, 12:50 AM »
If it isn't a pretty decent piece I don't even bother that helps keep them to a minimum. I have variety of sorting spaces.

 One for sheet goods pieces 3' wide 2'  high 30" deep (in a bench) that holds whatever pieces of ply that will fit in it standing vertically so that they are easy to look through and take out.

Four plastic tubs hold -- A). hardwood, B) plywood, C) 2 x chunks, D) actual scrap (goes to a friends stove).  

One section of my lumber rack holds pieces between 3' and 6' long.

I have a rack of vertical tubes .. eight tubes in graduated heights for trim pieces and strips (4" PVC for the tubes). I put my straight line rip cut offs near the planer. When I am planing something else I run them through to a uniform size so they are ready to use for whatever when needed.

    When any of these spots gets full it gets weeded out , keeping the best pieces.  That prevents saving too much that will never get used and just start taking over the shop.


Offline Kev

  • Posts: 7652
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2013, 04:53 AM »
For me this totally depends on the material. Framing material I'm brutal with as you can end up with mountains of rubbish ... same with cheap sheet goods. If you're the sort of person that makes small intricate pieces - nothing is truly too small to keep, but you'll need to be very organised.

Offline Sparktrician

  • Posts: 4009
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2013, 07:18 AM »
I tend to keep most surplus material, but only if I can foresee a potential usage such as blocking, cleats, etc.  Otherwise, scraps go into the woodstove. 

- Willy -

  "Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. 
  The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass."

 - Herman Lincoln Wayland (1830-1898)

Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2013, 10:35 AM »
I guess a lot depends on wether you are lumber rich or lumber poor. If you have a lot to work with you can afford to be less choosy on what you save. I am lumber rich so unless it is a particular size like for mouldings, faceframes, shelf edging, or turning stock, firewood it is. Sheet goods scraps are saved, but cut right away into particular items such as cabinet corner blocking, screwrails, toekick backers and interior door shim stock. This way they store easier and are ready when you need them. Framing lumber and sheathing is used on site, returned, or made into firewood.

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Offline pghmyn

  • Posts: 164
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2013, 11:14 AM »
I save a lot of smaller pieces of wood to use in jigs, clamping, test pieces, etc. When I'm done with them there, then they are tossed.
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Offline panelchat

  • Posts: 190
Re: Cutoffs/Scraps
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2013, 01:52 PM »
this may or may not be of any help to you, but i have always drawn entire casework jobs out on CAD first, then used it to nest parts on draw up 4x8 panels, which i print out as a cutlist, this can be incredibly efficient in terms of material usage. it takes some time, but its better for me to spend the time organizing the work on the computer, rather than standing around in the shop with a tape measure, breathing sawdust. sometimes i'll tweak/reduce a few non critical dimensions throughout a job, re-nest the parts, and end up being able to order one fewer 4x8 panel on a job that uses, say five or so plywood sheets. this approach is a bit tedious for some, but it minimizes waste very effectively, and leaves you with some extra cash in your pocket.