Thursday, September 21, 2017

Working With 1 X 4 Strapping

For light work that does not require high strength and resistance to abrasion 1 X 4 strapping is inexpensive and easy to work with. However there are a few things different about working with strapping. Firstly much of the strapping available is made from lower quality spruce ( top quality spruce is coveted for construction of such items as musical instruments). Picking strapping for projects usually requires picking through the lift to exclude cracked warped and overly knotted boards.

Second most strapping nowadays is made from resawn 2 X 4's. The sawmill industry gets to utilize there lower grade 2 X 4's by passing them through a resaw and selling them as 1 X 4 strapping. The problem for utilizing them for projects is that it is no longer 3/4" thick because of the resaw kerf and they are not planed on one side which would reduce the thickness even more and increase the cost to produce. The thickness varies between 5/8" and 11/16" (depending on the resaw and tooth set), so for dado work a stack dado is necessary as opposed to standard size tooling like router bits. And unless you want to do some pretty heavy sanding, a jointer or planer is necessary for the rough side.

In the first picture, on the left is a full size 1 X 4 pine and on the right is 1 X 4 strapping.

In this picture the the strapping on the right has the rough resawn side facing up. There are different types of resaws, the one used here was very well adjusted, they are usually rougher than this.

For light work like drawers or in my case shallow molding flasks or my current roll-up door project, they are an inexpensive alternative.

Little update rather than a new post. working on designing and cutting out the bracket assemblies today. The herons are so happy I haven't made them lunch yet (lol), they are coming almost up to the house. They still take off in a hurry when I start up my hand grinders. Here is a nice picture of one who posed for me.

 Just joking about the lunch thing