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i need advice on joining pieces of cedar and keeping the joint as invisible as possible. Answered


1] Make sure your joints match and are cut to exacting sizes

2] When sanding your wood make sure to save as much clean dust as possible and the finer the better

3] If you end up with gaps mix 2 parts wood dust with one part wood glue and mix quickly as it will dry fast blend the putty into the crack deeply and let dry

4] Sand with the grain and smooth out your joints if you missed some redo step 3 and sand again .

I work with cedar all the time my whole kitchen is cedar red cedar is Beautiful to work with and looks great in finished products

Some times i just use very fine sandpaper and make me a good sized pile of dust and keep it in a jar so when i need putty i can whip some up quickly make sure you make plenty of red dust and white dust as you will need both to match some joints works great for brad nail holes and air nailers as well

Hope this helps


6 years ago

A simple method is pocket hole joinery. Look it up on YouTube or Google. You essentially drive 2 or 3 screws in at a shallow angle on the inside faces of the pieces your joining. It's super fast and sturdy. A basic pocket hole joining guide will cost you $20 though.

Hello, so you want to join together cedar and make it invisible at the joint. There are a couple of ways and it all depends on the tools you have available. A lot of people hide the joints by getting one thick board and then re-sawing it so that all four pieces of wood are book matched. In other words you make four boards out of one so all of the grain matches when you glue it together. Attaching wise I would miter them together and use a biscuit joint for added strength. If this is not an option and tools are limited a lot of pros buy a prismacolor pencil package that is skin toned. All of these colors match wood grain and you can draw in a false grain to match the other. It is important though that the wood is glued properly and there are no gaps in cuts when they come together. Both of these methods work gluing together either butting pieces or parallels.

Use a lot of super glue and clear tape!

Can you make me one?

I'm not much of a woodworker but I watched a show (The Woodwright's Shop) where a guy uses hand tools and human powered machines to make various pieces of furniture. In one episode he made a table using no nails, screws or any other sort of metal parts. He joined the pieces for the tabletop by cutting a bowtie shaped groove across the joint of two of the boards, then cutting a piece that fit the groove snugly and hammering it in. This only works however if you only want the joint to be invisible from one side. If you want the joint to fit end to end the scarf joint mentioned below seems appropriate. Otherwise a mortise and tennon joint might work (semi-invisible on both sides). Of course none of this info can be 100% helpful if we don't know which sides of the boards are being attached to eachother.

Wisteria bow tie closeup.jpg

7 years ago

Scarf joints (Rick mentioned them) are about as invisible as is possible. I've used them in a couple boat-building projects.

Done right, there's no visible gap, and no place for glue to pool and darken the joint. They are very strong.

But if the two pieces of wood don't match well, the transition can still be obvious. They are also very time consuming and there's a learning curve, too...

(If instead it's corners you want to be seamless, look at miter joints...)


7 years ago

How fast does R Ceder grow in SC ?
Could you motivate it to grow your desired shape with branches and
ultimately no need for a band saw.
I have seen wonders in a tree redirected.


grow a seat.jpg

sanded finger joints i think are good (there not invisible but what is?)

This is what i recomend...


7 years ago

OK, but I need to know what kind of cedar (rough cut, finished ----) and what size your talking about and what kind of joint, lengthwise? butt, on a diagonal or mitered? Tell us what you are doing and we can help. For all I know your making bridge timbers.

sorry bout that. i have made some lamps from 2ft tall to 6ft, also i am making horizontal (36in) an vertical (5-6ft) hat/coat racks. i havent used a tree bigger than 5in in diameter. and yes they are trees right i cut out the woods so rough cut. i dont have a table saw so i got to rig a fence o something on my skill saw

Side to side joints - Search Dowel joints

End to end Search Scarf Joint Although I think I would make the joint decorative and part of the design - Look for Japanese wood working joints there are many decorative samples.

Modern method - route several deep triangular grooves in each part of the wood to increase the contact area and glue them together with a suitable glue.

Laminating several thinner lengths together will allow you to place the jointed section in a different place building strength into the joins.




Joining in which directions?

Joining along the long grain (making boards wider) is done fairly often, to make boards wider than can be easily obtained or to "bookmatch" grain for effect;. Take a look at the center panel of raised-panel doors, or at tabletops, or anywhere else a wide panel exists that hasn't been made out of plywood. The various woodworking books and magazines give good descriptions of panel construction techniques; basically it's a matter of selecting lumber that matches well in color and grain, preparing it properly (jointing the edges so they're flat and square to the surface, so they glue nicely), aligning it properly (playing with the order of the boards and shifting them back and forth a bit can make the grain transitions less obvious -- or can make the transitions a deliberate effect, as is done for bookmatched panels), gluing them up well aligned with each other and flat, and -- after the glue dries -- sanding or planing the panel to smooth any remaining mismatch in the alignment of the boards and to ensure the whole panel's surface is flat and coplanar. Then cut the panel to final size and shape.

I presume you don't have to be reminded that the wood should be properly dried before you start constructing anything with it, or you risk having it warp or crack as it dries. The rule of thumb I've heard, if air-drying rather than using a kiln, is a year per inch of wood thickness. Green (wet) wood is sometimes used for wood turning (lathe work), though.

(I'm strictly a beginner woodworker, still setting up my own shop, with several projects "hanging fire" pending time to work on them.)


7 years ago

sorry again red eastern cedar i live in SC so they seem to grow on every corner. 95% of the time they are already on the ground or headed that way. anyway i thik i gave you most the info you need if not let me know