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large wood corbels

M Smith

I'm going to be building two large ( 24" deep x 34" tall x 6.5" wide) wood corbels to support a custom hood surround. Finish is white paint/lacquer so i am very concerned about glue joint lines telegraphing down the road IF i do a solid slab glue up. Alternately, i might do more of a "composite" type of fabrication- 5/4 solid "sides" with spacer blocks glued in to get the 6.5" , bending poplar at curves, maple veneer as a final scalloped face in the curved and flat sections, small roundover to ease the edges. Question- what type of glue for the Maple veneer, was thinking cold Hide glue. Is there a better method to fabricate from solid with the goal of never seeing glue joint lines telegraph thru the paint ???

M Smith

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6/22/14       #2: large wood corbels ...

Think I'd skip the veneer near a range and make it hollow with solid face. Use a hard setting glue with tight fit. Give it some time after cutting before final sanding to let the moisture even out.

7/2/14       #3: large wood corbels ...
Dale Skipper  Member


I agree with Larry regarding veneer near a range; lots of potential moisture steaming up on those corbels over the years.

We made some large ones similar but not paint grade, they were Cherry. We edge glued 8/4 together than sandwiched glued those pieces. So, we ended up with visibly glue joints but they did not look bad. I considered the veneer application for that job but was too concerned with the proximately to the range.

Let us know how you make out!

Best regards,


7/6/14       #4: large wood corbels ...
M Smith

Ended up doing a "hollow" type construction with maple lumber core panels and then psa backed maple veneer for the scalloped face . Came out good but only time will tell if it stays tight over the long haul ??? If I had more time I would vac bag the veneer with hide glue - yes I said hide glue .
M Smith

7/6/14       #5: large wood corbels ...
M Smith

Pics of corbel fab

View higher quality, full size image (1840 X 3264)

View higher quality, full size image (1840 X 3264)

View higher quality, full size image (1840 X 3264)

7/6/14       #6: large wood corbels ...

The advantages of hide glue and why it is used for traditional musical instruments is it is easily reversable. Making it possible to repair them as needed. Heat and moisture are used to loosen it. Are you sure it would be your choice for use around a range?

7/6/14       #7: large wood corbels ...
M Smith

I thought the same thing but after talking to Mr Patrick Edwards ( leading expert on Hide glue and maker of Old Brown Glue) he assured me that the heat/moisture needed to reverse hide glue has to be concentrated right on the joint and even given the close proximity of these corbels to a cooktop it would not be an issue - in his opinion ,which I respect . Also read somewhere u can add "alum" powder to hide glue to make it "waterproof/resistant".
M Smith

7/6/14       #8: large wood corbels ...
Dale Skipper  Member


Great Job M Smith!

Those corbels look fantastic!

Best regards,


7/7/14       #9: large wood corbels ...
M Smith

Dale -
Thanx - they were a lot of work !!! Ended up using PSA backed maple veneer for the scalloped face, only time will tell if they stay put. If I had more time I would have vac bagged them with hide glue (cold version) .

M Smith

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