Author Topic: Time for plan B  (Read 4462 times)

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Offline HowardH

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Time for plan B
« on: November 10, 2007, 11:04 PM »
So it's Saturday and time to start creating my raised panels for the cabinet doors I'm making for the kitchen.  Used poplar for the frames and I thought MDF would be good for the raised panels since the doors are going to be painted.  Turned out not to be such a good choice after all.  Seems MDF (at least the HD variety) has a propensity to delaminate at the corners and it simply doesn't look good.  That leaves me with a couple of choices from what I can see.  1, use poplar and glue up boards where necessary to achieve the necessary width and plane to the proper thickness or 2. use baltic birch ply and hope I don't run into any voids where I am machining the doors to achieve the proper thickness to fit into the grooves in the rails and stiles.  Since I am painting them anyway, can you use a good BB ply to make the panels?  It would make my life a whole lot easier, faster and considerably less expensive than buying 4/4 poplar and planing dowm to the right thickness and then gluing them up.  What words of wisdom do you guys have for me? 
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

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Offline Eli

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2007, 12:06 AM »
so what, like 3/8" five layer (13 layer?) birch ply?  Or 1/2"?

You're right, it sounds easier. Depends what your ply is like locally, what the voids if any are like. And I'd think that raised cut in the edge of the ply  would be really thirsty paintwise. You might end up using more bondo than you want to, but I'd still try it anyway if I were you.

Then again sometimes the long way is the short way. With solid wood you'd have less finishing issues maybe, but they take longer to make per panel.

How many doors was it again?
Do nothing, stay ahead.

Offline woodshopdemos

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2007, 01:33 AM »
Howard,
   I know you said that MDF gave you problems, but I think I would try  to fix the route. You can start by seeing if you lumber yard has better or if its available thru a friendly cabinet shop. While they can be fragile, I dont think I have ever had a board fall apart before slipping it into the safety of the frame.  And it should machine well, if your cutters are sharp.
In memory of John Lucas (1937 - 2010)

Offline HowardH

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2007, 09:31 AM »
I'm using a new vertical panel cutter so it should be sharp.  The MDF is 5/8 so it leaves about a 2mm high edge from where the taper ends out to the flat part of the panel.  I'm doing that in order to closely match the drawer fronts that are already in place with that profile.  It's that edge where I saw that issue.  However, it was only on one test door so I suppose I should give up just yet.  Some primer and paint should help to insure it remains a solid material.  I'll test out some more today!
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE with router plate. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500

Offline Daviddubya

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2007, 10:41 AM »
here's how I would rank the choices you gave us:

1.  Poplar
2.  MDF
3.  Baltic Birch ply

In the long run, I am confident you will be happier using hardwood for the panels.  If you plan to live in the house for a long time, then hardwood would be the best choice.

MDF will work.  Let us know how your test comes out.

Baltic birch would be a problem - not because of voids, but for finishing.  I would think that exposing the inner plys of the plywood during machining would result in a surface that would be difficult to impossible to finish nicely, even using paint.  You will spend a lot of time filling the exposed plys to give the paint a smooth appearance that will match the rest of the doors.
David W. Falkenstein
in Cave Creek, AZ, USA

Offline patrick anderson

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2007, 10:43 AM »
I agree with John about the mdf and looking for better sheets elsewhere. Try mixing white glue and water 1:1 for a sealer for the mdf.
patrick anderson
www.neoshed.com
may the festool be with you.....always

Offline wooden

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2007, 12:22 PM »
sanding and filling and sanding again endgrain on poplar or plywood for painted raised panels is a lot more work and pain than you might imagine, although this could be a reason to get an LS130 sander if you don't already... ;).  I agree about trying MDF again.

Since you're using a vertical bit, you might be running into technique/support issues at the beginning/ending of the cut that gives you a bit of blow out, even in MDF.  I'd double check/double think about the work flow and see if you might not be supporting the work well enough all the way through the end of the cut.  If you mount your router horizontal, it is easier to properly support and feed the work through the bit for panel raising with a vertical bit, IME.

Offline Mirko

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2007, 01:41 PM »
Howard,
You can use mdf panels, but use poplar edges mitered and glued around the perimeter, this will work only if you make the poplar edges exactly the width of your raised panel molding. If the poplar strips are wider than the profile you will always see the glue joint through the paint layers.

Mirko

Offline HowardH

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2007, 10:02 AM »
I'm using an Amana ogee R & S set to profile the edges and to cope cut the rails.  I'm not using any miter cuts.  In addition, my Jointech table system came with the fence raiser so I have about a 10" high fence to run the panels down.  Haven't had any issues with the panel blanks moving around at all. 

2921-0

Mirko, are you referencing the overall thickness of the doors comparing the thickness of the frames with the raised panels?  All the frame pieces are 2.25" wide by exactly .75" thick.  The raised panels are made of 5/8" MDF but because the the R & S set cuts the groove for the panels to set in are .25" in from the back so the panels themselves are about 1/8" proud of the frame height when viewed horizonally.  I'll take some pics tonight of what I have do so far.  I really appreciate all the great help! 
« Last Edit: November 12, 2007, 10:03 AM by HowardH »
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE with router plate. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500

Offline Mirko

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2007, 01:51 PM »
Howard,
What I was referring to was, an alternative way to make the panel using mdf but then framing the mdf with poplar, this way when the panel is profiled, you will not have to worry about the end grain of the mdf soaking up all that paint. I never use mdf for paint grade its a nuisance to finnish.

Mirko

Offline HowardH

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2007, 03:03 PM »
Oh, Ok.  I see.  The fog has lifted, so to speak.  I'm going to get one of those Fuji Q4's to spray the doors.  I figured to use Kilz as a first coat primer to seal everything and then the paint afterwards.  Any other suggestions would be much appreciated. 
Howard H
The Dallas Texas Festool Fanatic!

Mark Twain:  "I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a letter approving of it." "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

mft1080, P1cc, MFT/3, T15, RO150FEQ, MT55cc, RTS400, CT22, CT36E, 800, 1080, 1400, 1900 rails, OF 2200, OF1400, CSX, C18, Vecturo, Qwas dogs, Parf Dogs, Zobo's, Syslite Uni, CMS GE with router plate. Mafell DDF40, Sawstop contractor, PM 1500

Offline woodshopdemos

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2007, 04:20 PM »
Howard,
You can use mdf panels, but use poplar edges mitered and glued around the perimeter, this will work only if you make the poplar edges exactly the width of your raised panel molding. If the poplar strips are wider than the profile you will always see the glue joint through the paint layers.

Mirko

Mirko,
   I always view you as a practical person. I like your method...alot. But more work. If you did do it this way, can't you use one of the many store bought moldings and miter corners and apply around the MDF panel?
In memory of John Lucas (1937 - 2010)

Offline Eli

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2007, 04:17 AM »
Mirko didn't say HE did it that way John.  ;D
Do nothing, stay ahead.

Offline Anthony Hayes

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2007, 10:03 PM »
 Set your table saw at a slight angle and take off any excess material from the mdf panel. Reduces the stress on your panel cutter. There are many different grades of MDF on the market. HD happens to sell one of the worst.

  Mirko suggestion works great if you are creating large panels that are to be stained and finished. We did a job with cherry raised panels 8 feet tall.   We used 3/4" Cherry MDF core ply with 2 " solid perimetered with a toungue and groove to attach. You dont get the nice endgrain look. But it is a lot more cost effective. Your equipment needs to handle large panels accurately or you will have a lot of time hand sanding the edges smooth to get a good transition.

Anthony
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Offline Mirko

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Re: Time for plan B
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2007, 02:40 PM »
The only time I've used this method is when I made book matched veneered raised panels, It looks nice, different but nice and gives it a picture framed look to the panel. Prepare the wood edges by mitering and gluing to the core, then press the veneer, size panel, machine profile... done!

Mirko