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Cultivated Reef

Making progress, Mini Bow Stand & Canopy


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Seems like I've been working on this for a year now. I think I'm about 80% done.

Almost have the curved door ready to be assembled (not in the picture). I'm learning a lot about bending wood, It's a lot harder than I thought.



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Man, that looks very nice. Keep up the great work, it will be worth it. I wish I could make someting that nice without going crazy(I'm already half there). Looks like you'll have some extra room in that cabinet. Why not skip the HOB and put a small sump/fuge in there? Good luck and definitely show us the finished setup.



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Cheap Metal Tub, sounds like the ones I saw at Home Depot. They have the small paint size ones in the paint department, and the larger ones you could bathe a small dog in (24"diameter) are with the garbage cans.

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Thanks for the compliments. I will definitely take a trip to Home Depot & check it out.


Sump/fuge in the cabinet, Excellent future mod idea!!! Thanks:)


Also I made an adjustable clamp, it seems to be working much better.

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I'm getting broken links to your pictures oh well. But I can guess at what you're trying to do.


I also have a mini bow 7 that I'm planning to make a canopy and base for and I want to bend the wood. Instead of steaming the wood like they do for violin making I'm going to use the bent wood lamination technique. I got the idea from watching this guy on the DIY channel.




Using bent wook lamination you take 1/8" strips of wood glue them and sandwich them in a form made of MDF. It's kind of involved but I htink the results might be better. It also allows you to make a thicker piece of bent wood. I'm boing to try to use 1/8" plywood to build up my sandwich of wood strips since I don't have a bandsaw. I've yet to purchase a jigsaw to rough out the layers of the form so I haven't done anything there yet. I'll post the results when I'm finished. It might be some time though.

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The way I bend wood is to get a piece of pvc tube that is big enough inside to take the size wood you are using. I have a cheap hot pot (electric teakettle) and stuff a rag in one end of the pvc I put the piece of wood in the piece of pvc and then put the open end of the pvc over the end teakettle. I usually have a small hole in the pvc pipe as well you don't want to trap all the steam. Plug in the tea kettle and off it goes. usually the wood is big enogh not to fall through the mouth of the teakettle. Oh yeah lean the pipe up against a wall so that this will work.


I don't steam alot anymore but this has worked for me. It seams alot safer than your BBQ idea.


Steaming isn't much fun because of springback and etc. To do it right you need a bending table to compress the wood. I tend to laminate now or work in FRP.


You stand looks excellent btw I am jealous. here's a bad pic of my stand for my 65. No bending just bandsaw work.


have fun



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Steamed also works well, you can make a steam chamber out of a 6" piece of pvc, an old 5g metal gas can and a burner. There is a certain amount of kick back you will get when you take it out of the form however, so again I would recommend the lamination method.



Looking good keep up the good work. I plan on making mine to the size of the tank such as you, and maybe putting a slick polish black lacquer finish on it like pianos have. Though I'm not into modern stuff, I think it would really look nice with the sw tank, opposed to a nice cherry.

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I haven't had time to get to series about the bending yet. The two pieces I had in the tub are junked. The only thing I accomplished was to stain the tub brown. Wife loved seeing that mess. :*(


Got the door done (except for fine sanding), and I'm working on mounting the hidden hinges.



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  • 2 weeks later...

I scrapped the steaming/watter bending idea.


I went Southern lumber to have (2) 1/4" thick piece of oak planed down to 1/8", hoping to bend them & glue them together. Southern lumber said 1/4" is the thinest they can go.


Does anyone know if its posible to plane them to 1/8"?

OSH sells a mini planer, I might have to pick it up.

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How wide are the strips that you are bending? If they are an inch or so. You might be able to resaw them off of a board if you are careful. Miniumum thickness on a dewalt portable planer is 1/8" so you should be able to plane that small.



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Hey Mattgecko,


You can indeed go much smaller. All you have to do is add an accesory bed to your lunchbox planer (dewalt, ryobi, etc). By adding a be I mean, taking a piece of melamine or ply (malamine is better), put a small strip of wood on each side to keeop it form moving when the wood get pulled through. Now you have a bed that is 3/4' higher then before and can plan to any thickness you like. THe thinner you go the more diffictult. Sharp blades are a must, and feed it through at an angle.


If you have any questions drop me a pm.

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Thanks for the tip guys. Im going to look aroung for a place to plane them for me.


(2) 20 1/4" x 5" x 1/8" (Front band for the canopy)

(2) 20 1/4" x 2" x 1/8" (Front band for stand)

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MattGecko, The dude in the DIY Woodworks TV show took a thick piece of stock used a band saw and finger board to make 1/8" strips. However that won't work for anything as tall and wide as a door you were planning, maybe just for the canopy.

Using a planer is another way to guy like tsalter and mane3215 say.


A 3rd option.

What about taking 1/8" plywood sheet do you think that would work? I was thinking of buying the 4'x8' x 1/8" sheet from Home Depot and trying to use that instead of cutting strips myself. I'm not sure if the plywood would delaminate after the bend operation. I was actually going to try that this weekend.


A 4th option I saw in a woodworking magazine at the Barnes & Noble. The guy in the article created two curved pieces of mdf and used them to lay out parallel strips of wood over them. Looks kind of like the ceiling of a barrel vault arch. Difficult to describe with words.

The long edge of each strip was cut at an angle so that it would fit next to the adjacent pieces. The wood then was smoothed out using a hand planer and scraper, leaving eventually a smooth curve on the door. The guy in the article took the curved strips glued them together and had that float as the center panel of a door of a cabinet.

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I just found a place that has exactly what I need, with minor trimming.



I might actually finish this in my life time. :happy:

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good find on the oak. You might find that you need to steam it a little bit anyway as hardwood doesn't like to bend.


foo-a bandsaw usually leaves a rough edge with a resaw blade so you have to plane afterwards anyway. Thickness sanders are used as well in wood that doesn't plane very well. one with knots,crazy grain etc.


1/8" door skin ply will bend nicely. The question is if you like the look of the wood. I think it looks okay and would use it on a hood some people would perfer the look of oak or cherry.


Good thread



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You're right, wood cut with a bandaw will need to be planed. The link mane3215 posted I think describes that.


Okay so you think my plan to use the door skin will work. I'm probably going to stain it really dark or paint it black to match the plastic trim so the look of the wood should be okay. But one could always buy some hardwood veneers and apply them to the inside and outside of the wood if they wanted a different look.

I'll buy the MDF for the form, the plywood sheet, a jigsaw, some glue and try it this weekend. I already have a router so I think I'm set.

Does anyone know what is the best type of glue for the glue up of the laminate sandwich of wood strips? The guy on the DIY woodworks program refers to a "slow-setting platic resin glue".

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fooo- 1/8" doorskin will bend. I've built a few kayaks with it and it will definately and easily take the bend on the front of a minibow. Iwould use titebond 2 as it is water resistant or a polyureathane like gorrila glue. you just want to find one that will work with outdoor projects. epoxy resin will work but it is usually alot more costly unless you have it around.

i replied before i checked that link saw that it went over that.


the last boat we built had a doorskin hull and regular wood strip deck. we were prepared to paint the hull but liked the look of the doorskin under varnish and never did. If you stain it a reddish color it looks pretty cool. definately try some stains on it you could probably find something you like. It is pretty dark anyway when you finish it so I wouldn't bother painting it unless you don't like the way it looks.


Veneers would be cool as well.


have fun



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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm going to hijack your thread here but I thought people might like to see the results from my attempt at bent wood lamination.


Materials from Home Depot:

4'x8'x1/8" sheet of plywood (door skin)

4'x8'x3/4" sheet of MDF

Gorilla Glue

Drywall screws

Wood glue


Tools I used:

jigsaw (bandsaw would be better)

router table and laminate flush trim bit

table saw

cordless screw driver

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