How much wood should I get for Roubo?


estesbubba
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I think the plans say you need 150 BF but guessing that's if you have little waste. The place I'm getting the hard maple from keeps 200 BF of 8/4 in their retail building which I can pick through but no guarantees that much will be in there. Since it's an hour drive each way I'm risking it. I can also order and they'll straight line and plane to 1 3/4" but they pull off the top. He said their current stock averages 6-8" wide and 9-10' long. Will I have a ton of waste with these sizes? If I do go with this sizes how much should I order? I was thinking 200 BF but not sure.

Also didn't know if I should have them plane to 1 7/8" and clean them up on my jointer and planer or 1 3/4" and they might be glue ready. Watching the guild video Marc said that getting them dead flat for the top glue up isn't as important as it is for most projects.

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I bought 150 bf of soft maple and had a little left over when I was done...very little.  But I used hard maple for my chop, walnut for the end cap, sapele for the dog strip, and curly maple for my front laminate.

 

You want to try to get boards that are either around 4.5" wide or closer to 9" wide for the top.  6" to 8" boards will yield a lot of waste if you're shooting for the 4" top that the plans call for.  It's been so long now that I can't remember all the dimensions in the bench, but I do remember digging through a bunch of stock to find the ideal widths for the top lamination.

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Applying the 20% rule of thumb puts you at a little over 130 BF.  Seeing the material should answer that question.

 

Also, Eric was correct on paying attention to your widths..

 

To put it in perspective..

 

8/4 x 9" x 10' = 15BF and you'll get 2 boards for your top out of it.

 

8 boards of that size would be your 120BF - If all 8 boards are perfect, you're done.

 

As you're looking at the lumber, if you find something you can't live with, you'll have to add material to account of it.

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I think the waste rule is probably higher for this project because of mostly 8/4. I think I'm going to stick with 170 BF 8/4 and 30 BF 4/4. The reason for taking the road trip is they are $1.09 BF cheaper plus to visit where my FIL was buried a couple of months ago. I can always get more locally if needed. 

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I think the plans say you need 150 BF but guessing that's if you have little waste. The place I'm getting the hard maple from keeps 200 BF of 8/4 in their retail building which I can pick through but no guarantees that much will be in there. Since it's an hour drive each way I'm risking it. I can also order and they'll straight line and plane to 1 3/4" but they pull off the top. He said their current stock averages 6-8" wide and 9-10' long. Will I have a ton of waste with these sizes? If I do go with this sizes how much should I order? I was thinking 200 BF but not sure.

Also didn't know if I should have them plane to 1 7/8" and clean them up on my jointer and planer or 1 3/4" and they might be glue ready. Watching the guild video Marc said that getting them dead flat for the top glue up isn't as important as it is for most projects.

 

Mike,

 

Are you referring to Dunham's or a different supplier in the area?

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Well crap I called today to order and all they have currently to mill up are 6-8" wide and 10-12' long. That's going to be a lot of waste getting 4.5 x 8' boards for the top. Getting it milled they can do 1 15/16" hit and miss planed. A few inches too wide I can hand,e but 4' too long sucks.

He said currently in retail bin boards average 6" x 9' milled to 1 3/4" but he said no idea what will be there by Saturday.

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If you can get boards that are 8.5" wide and 10-12' long, you can use 7' for two top laminates out of each board and the off-fall for legs and stretchers...the width is the critical part.

Thanks Eric. You think 4.25" wide will be enough for 4" finished with this project? I think the plans call for 5" wide initially but that seems a little generous. Since this is a beast of a project maybe not.

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Well I think my wood for the bench has all worked out and got my local place's prices $1.50 less than my original quote. So after a little road trip last Saturday and grabbing some more on my way home today, I have 175 BF of 8/4 and 40 BF 4/4. The 8/4 ranges from 8.5 to 11" wide with a couple 5" in there, and mainly 9-10' long. The boards with the green ends are 2 1/8" thick and damn flat!

My vises haven't shipped yet and no rush to start so I'll probably sticker them this weekend.

BTW - A 11x10 8/4 hard maple board is freaking heavy!

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Looks like a killer pile of lumber.

 

I have to admit I'm a bit jealous watching you gear up for the bench build.  It's a fun project and kind of a life-changing event in a fairly trivial way.  My life is divided into two distinct epochs...pre-bench and post-bench...and the time in between is a foggy haze like coming out of an acid trip. :D

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Looks like a killer pile of lumber.

I have to admit I'm a bit jealous watching you gear up for the bench build. It's a fun project and kind of a life-changing event in a fairly trivial way. My life is divided into two distinct epochs...pre-bench and post-bench...and the time in between is a foggy haze like coming out of an acid trip. :D

I put my 48" LV straight edge on the top board which is unplaned and that sucker is flat and the rest appear the same way. At 2 1/8" thick I might be able to get close to 2" once surfaced. Don't know if that is beneficial but might be able to use one less board for the top.

Eric, I am pumped for this project. My first woodworking project was my solid core door bench and it served me well through two garage shops. I think building a Roubo will allow me to take the next steps in elevating my woodworking skills and also be a nice way to start off my new shop.

It's going to be challenging but hopefully my most rewarding project yet.

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I know it isn't "pure" but there is no reason you can't use the narrow offcuts for the top. If you joined a couple of 2 - 2.5 inch strips to make one of the boards for the top you can save a solid board. Just use the joined board in an interior position and don't put two of them adjacent. The glue joints will be hidden and are stronger than the wood. You can even go to the extreme of making the bottom half of the board from two short pieces.

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I know it isn't "pure" but there is no reason you can't use the narrow offcuts for the top. If you joined a couple of 2 - 2.5 inch strips to make one of the boards for the top you can save a solid board. Just use the joined board in an interior position and don't put two of them adjacent. The glue joints will be hidden and are stronger than the wood. You can even go to the extreme of making the bottom half of the board from two short pieces.

I was thinking much of the same thing. I bought a pre made top that has a few of these shorts used as inside pieces. It looks like 1/8" x maybe 1" fingerjoints used to join. After proper planing, I can't even feel the joints I know are there. I agree it may not be any wisdom in using ALL shorts joined but I wouldn't hesitate to use them in my plans.

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