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Hammer5573

Question About Wood Movement

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I’ve always wondered if seasonal wood movement in furniture would be lessened if both sides of the wood had some type of a wood sealer applied...(I’m  assuming that if the wood were completely sealed  it would not be effected by humidity changes)? 

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Will still change the movement will just take place at a slightly slower rate. Most finishes will let some small amount of air and moisture pass through.

Finishes may help against very short spikes in humidity or moisture. Say the humidity jumped 50% for a week.

With solid wood there is no getting around it. The only way to prevent movement is to immobilize the wood as in plywood.

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What "Nut" said.  Wood is gonna move, like it or not.  Just plan for it when you build something.

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+1 to the above. Wood moves. You can mitigate the movement, but not prevent it completely. Just factor it into the design.

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Frankly, everything moves. Even stone and metal, although for different reasons. Railroad tracks are known to buckle from summer heat if not installed with proper expansion joints.

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1 hour ago, wtnhighlander said:

Frankly, everything moves. Even stone and metal, although for different reasons. Railroad tracks are known to buckle from summer heat if not installed with proper expansion joints.

Timely post!  I understand that the interstate I90 in S Dakota buckled yesterday,  I assume from inadequate  jointing of reinforced concrete.

 

 

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One value of applying surface coatings to "both sides" is to keep the wood movement symetric or balanced as well as slowed down.

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8 hours ago, Pondhockey said:

Timely post!  I understand that the interstate I90 in S Dakota buckled yesterday,  I assume from inadequate  jointing of reinforced concrete.

 

 

Even with proper jointing it happens. Saw cut joints are only 1/3rd of the way through the pavement anyway. The downfall of having to deal with pavement temps that swing from -40 to 140+

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I work with the Illinois DOT quite a bit. They told me that the amount of moisture under the concrete has a lot to do with blow ups. With the amount of rain we had this year and the record heat I'm surprised there haven't been more.  

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2 hours ago, woodbutcher74 said:

I work with the Illinois DOT quite a bit. They told me that the amount of moisture under the concrete has a lot to do with blow ups. With the amount of rain we had this year and the record heat I'm surprised there haven't been more.  

In snow country we get frost heaves that way all the time (well, frequently in winter.)  Not so much in summer!

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Drought (rare) kills roads here. Many of our local soil types require some moisture for cohesion and stability. Too dry and the roads settle through the substrate. 

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That kind of drought is rare for us, too. But several years ago, we had a summer with zero rainfall for more than 90 days. The ground dried and cracked so bad it left huge gaps all through the asphault of my driveway.

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