Introduction: Bentwood Ring
In this Instructable, I'll show how I made my wooden ring. For a detailed guide, please check my video.
For this build you will need;
- 0.6mm Wood Veneer
- Liquid Super Glue
- Masking / Painters Tape
- Sanding Paper
- A Knife
Step 1: Cut the Wood and Sand Edges
I started off my cutting a 1cm strip from my wood veneer. On this ring I experimented with some American Cherry veneer, it worked quite well but I've also had some great success with other woods. My favourite is my ring from Sapele, I wear it everyday as my wedding band. It's best to make several light scores instead of one cut, this helps keep and nice clean cut and avoid splintering the wood. I use a set square to get perfect lines.
After cutting down my strip, I sanded each end of the strip until a very fine taper. This means later when glued together you can't see any joins in the ring.
Step 2: Boil, Soak, Repeat
At this point the wood is slightly flexible, but if you tried to form a ring shape it would just break, so I placed the wood into an old large saucepan, and filled with boiling water. I let this soak for 20-30mins before carefully removing. I wiped off any excess water and wrapped the wood around a tub around 5cm wide, I then put masking tape all around this to hold it.
I let this dry for 2 hours before taking the tape off. It sprung back to a large curl, but much better than when I started. I got a smaller bowl and repeated the above steps, this time wrapping around a 15mm copper pipe with some tape on. The tape is built up until it matches the desired ring size. This time I let the wood dry a good 24 hours before started the next bit. If you start glueing too early, some glues don't mix well with water and will turn white and cloudy!
Step 3: Glue and Roll
After the wood has had 24 hours to dry I removed the tape, this time it held in a tight ring shape. I used my piece of copper pipe again but this time as I wrapped it up added super glue to the wood. It's important to use liquid super glue rather than the gel one. The liquid one soaks right into the veneer and makes it stronger.
Step 4: Sanding
I removed the ring from the copper pipe and started to sand it down. Starting at 60grit and working all the way up to 600. I also made a holder for my Dremel out of tape to fit the ring. By having the Dremel turning and holding the paper still I can get a smooth and even finish on the ring.
Step 5: Glue Finish
To finish the ring I will put quite a few layers of super glue. It forms a tough water resistant finish. I put a few drops on and carefully rubbed it into the ring. In between each coating I gave a quick sand with the 600 grit paper. In total I did around 6 coats of glue on the outside, inside and the edges.
Step 6: Done
And that's it! This is a great fun project to do. You can get away with very few tools and I bought a big pack of about 10 different veneers for under £5, enough to probably make well over 100 rings! Different woods work in different ways, some work really well, and others just are too hard to work with. Let me know which woods you try!