If you take note of the woodworking sphere on YouTube, you might have seen a video by Patrick Sullivan called “Glue Myths: 1. End grain” (posted under). I’ve been a fan of Patrick’s movies for some time now (I extremely suggest his DIY DRO video). Even so, I scrolled proper previous this video after I was first served it every week in the past. I figured it was going to only verify what I already knew: End grain glue joints aren’t an amazing thought.

Soon after the emails, Instagram DMs, discussion board posts, and feedback began coming and coming, and I lastly watched the video. I used to be improper. The video didn’t verify my beliefs.

First off, watch Patrick’s video:

Wow! Right? Patrick’s strategies appear as sound as could be–though I’m positive just a few engineers will argue in any other case in the feedback under (please do!).

My ideas and opinions are my very own right here, they usually’re nonetheless being fashioned the extra I take up the video and suppose about it. In Patrick’s testing, end-grain to end-grain joints carry out higher than side-grain to side-grain joints. I’ve a tough time arguing with the strategies, so I can’t argue with the outcomes. But I believe the on-line group is grossly overestimating what these outcomes imply. I can’t converse for Patrick*, however I believe he would agree that persons are getting a bit of too excited about the prospects afforded by a brand new world of end-grain to end-grain joints!

#1 – The outcomes aren’t that shocking

Anybody who has ever seen a 7-year outdated karate chop a pine board in half is aware of that the wooden all the time splits between the lengthy grain fibers versus throughout them. What Patrick’s video exhibits is simply that, with two added information factors; finish grain to lengthy grain and finish grain to finish grain.

If you take a look at the outcomes from Douglass Moore and Tom McKenna’s joint check article in 2009, you’ll see precisely the similar factor; joints virtually all the time fail when the lengthy grain fibers tear out. As they state in the article:

When we seemed carefully at how joints tended to fail, we discovered a transparent correlation with our check outcomes. The stronger joints compelled their part items to fail by fracture throughout the grain or proper at the glue joint (miter), whereas with the intermediate-strength and weakest joints, failure occurred by the splitting of 1 piece alongside the grain.

The strongest joints are joints that work cohesively with all the pieces round to maintain all the pieces in place. In truth, Marc Spagnuolo posted a implausible response video (round the 5:30 mark) that drove this level dwelling properly.

#2 – Over time, I believe wooden motion would make all of this moot

Wood goes to maneuver throughout its width. You can’t cease it, so your whole newfound cross-grain glue joints that carried out so effectively in Patrick’s video should not prone to carry out that effectively after a 12 months or two of motion. I actually hope that Patrick units apart just a few of those blanks to check in a 12 months or two. Even higher, I’d wish to see the efficiency of those cross-grain glue-ups on a bigger scale.

#3 – I can’t keep in mind a time I want I may have gotten away with a butt joint.

For the similar causes I don’t use pocket screws as everlasting joinery, I can’t think about an occasion after I can be utilizing a butt joint in any piece of furnishings I cared about. Joinery not solely provides you the power you want for long-lasting furnishings, but it surely makes all the pieces simpler to assemble. If you’ve ever tried to maintain a glue-laden board completely in place whereas making use of the acceptable clamping strain, you understand that it’s virtually an not possible process. Glue is slippery and people boards are going to maneuver throughout the place. Joinery holds all the pieces the place it’s purported to be.

Let me know in the feedback under how you’ll use an end-grain to end-grain joint, as a result of I can’t consider any examples.

#4 –  I’ve to the rethink justification for my reply on solid-wood chess boards, however not the reply itself.

We really had this podcast clip sitting right here prepared for… effectively… this, I suppose.

In episode 222, we mentioned a listener’s want to make a solid-wood chess board. One of my major justifications for advising that they not do that’s due to the weak spot of the end-grain joints that will outcome. We got here up with just a few strategies of working round the drawback (rabbeting the joints and inlaying blocks right into a stable piece) however after watching Patrick’s video, I’m beginning to rethink this one specific use case for end-grain glue joints. In the finish although, I nonetheless fear about wooden motion finally taking its toll on a chessboard. Patrick’s video actually makes me wish to attempt to construct one although and I’m hoping to take action quickly. Of course I’ll replace the weblog studying viewers!

Like Marc mentioned in his video, perhaps we must always all cease saying that there isn’t a power added to a joint by including glue to the shoulder of a tenon or finish grain of a dovetail. It’s virtually cliche at this level, however virtually everybody glues that finish grain after which extols the pointlessness of it. There is clearly some, if not a good quantity of power added. Is it value the squeeze-out it would trigger? Or is the reply like all the pieces else in woodworking—perhaps?

*Patrick, when you learn this, we’d like to have you ever on the podcast to debate your video! Email us ([email protected])!


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