making curved pieces with bent lamination video screenshot

A great way to make curved woodworking project parts is by laminating thin strips. Glue is applied between the wood strips and then they are clamped in a form that matches the shape of the final curve.

Skill Builder Video

Making Curved Pieces With Bent Lamination's - Video Transcript

Ernie Conover: Hi, I'm Ernie Conover. Making curved pieces for a piece of furniture, for a boat, for whatever, can be a difficult task. A great solution is what's called bent or stacked laminations. By taking a series of thin pieces as I have here, I can put glue between them and press them together in a form and get a strong piece. To do this, we build a form and I lay the curve out by putting some stops at each edge here and then bending this back and tracing a line.

Five minutes later, I had it in the bandsaw and was cutting this curve in it and now I can stack these up and push them down with glue between them and clamp them and I'll have a bent piece that will stay bent forever. Stronger than solid wood, which is a great way to make curved pieces. Okay, I have everything laid out on the bench. I have paper down to protect it from the glue, and our next job is to put even coats of glue between all of the pieces and put them up against the form. To keep them from sticking against the form, we're going to use a little wax paper that I purloined from the kitchen.

Titebond III is our best choice for this because it has a long open time and it has walnut shells which give it a nice brown color and hides the glue lines a little better. I'm now going to use a brayer, which is just a rubber roller. This will give me very even coatings of glue. We put our piece of wax paper in there, put our pieces down, center them up, end to end, top to bottom. Put our block in place, we can see our line through the wax paper and now we just clamp it on. I wasn't happy with the way these were adhering to each other, so I added two more clamps to give us a little better pressure on all the pieces.

This is dried overnight. We can take our clamps off now and our wax paper kept this from sticking to the form. We now have a curved door front that's stronger than solid wood, it doesn't flex at all. That's because the glue between all of these pieces has really set this piece of wood and it will stay that way forever. Great way to make curved pieces, give stack laminations a try.