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Miter folded end grain cabinet3/20
I am building a floating prep sink cabinet. And the client would like an 1.75" thick end grain counter top, but she wants the counter to wrap around both side of the cabinet as well as the front. The dimensions are 63" long 24" deep and 24" tall. I told her I could waterfall the 2 side but did not feel comfortable having it wrap around the front. I just wanted to get other peoples thoughts on having the front miter folded as well. My main concern is that having 2 sided, top and front all connected together that there would be a greater possibility for warping. Would anyone here feel comfortable miter folding top(24x63), front(24x63), and 2 sides(24x24)?
End grain top won't "waterfall" anyway, right? What is the point of putting such an expensive surface in the vertical plane? Suggest an edge grain for the vertical surfaces, and biscuit or domino the components. If you can use a prefab slab (BoosBlock) then the cuts and joinery are easy, and the blanks are stellar. Now, "Floating Cabinet" may bring its own pitfalls, this sounds like it is going to weigh about 500 lbs.
Yes, you are correct there will be no real waterfall effect. I guess I throw the term out there haphazardly. Why end grain on the vertical surface, not sure, its what the designer wanted.
So to be clear you are suggesting that the top still be made out of 1.75" end grain, but only extend the outside perimeter (1.5-2")down 24" with edge grain?
Definitely planing on putting good blocking with steel supports to hold it.
Yes you could do that, making butt joints.
If the designer wants a "seamless" miterfold, you could miter the edges of all the components and assemble with glue and biscuits or dominos. More work but might come closer to the design intent.
Better watch mixing up grain directions between the sides and the top.
We did an end grain top in a commercial building we wouldn't miter it , we did butt joints.
Maybe you could propose some sort of an aluminum or stainless bead break on the front face and fold them with the break in there.
Unfortunately I think those of us in the wood business see the design/mechanical flaws in what the designer wants but they often have no idea.
Always sketchy flirting the line between a suggested change due to mechanics and the reality of wood construction and the designers digging their heels in because they think you think your fiddling with their design.
Time to put your tactical sales cap on if you want the job to move forward.
Phrasing everything in any way possible to let the designer think they came up with the solution (lots of question marks in your response) seems to work well for me.
They pick one of your solutions, reframe it as their own novel solution to a simple problem, and you cash their check.
What about making a thin veneer from the end block.
I am thinking about running the grain one direction to minimize grain movement problems: The top is end grain, 1-3/4" th. The grain runs vertically. As it gets to the front, or the sides, it runs the full height (24" or ?) So, looking at the front of the cabinet (as it floats by...) we will see edge grain running vertically and ending up flush at the upper surface. Same at the sides - vertical grain running up the sides, parallel to the top grain direction.
You could also do the fourth side, simulating a 24" x 24" x 63" chunk of wood.
This 'top' will need to float as it is located and fastened onto the floating cabinet.
Miterfold (in my book) is a newish term in woodworking that relates to the machine operation of cutting almost all the way thru with a 90 degree bit on point, allowing a melamine, paper or foil backed man made board to be folded for a quick and inexpensive 'joint' for drawers, etc. It is not appropriate for solid wood miters such as you describe. That are simply mitered joints.
Waterfall (in my book) also a newish term, refers to the application of short vertical grain wood/veneer usually on an apron, skirt or frieze board that is oriented horizontally but up on edge. Like a table apron. The term has now been appropriated to mean a countertop that extends beyond the cabinet and turns 90 degrees towards the floor.
Thanks guys for your responses. The designer seemed to be on board with only running the top down the sides. I am having a zoom meeting (thanks to covid-19) this week with the designer and client, if the designer or client brings it up again I will recommend what David R Sochar described, this seems to be the most stable option.