Boxing Out Columns

Quick tips on wrapping columns with a four-sided hardwood box. November 28, 2011

I have to clad 20 steel posts, 100mm diameter, in merbu. I wanted to use mitre joins for the look of a solid piece of timber. The timbers are going to end up 3000x150x19 and are going to be difficult to join up. Can anyone suggest a good method? I was planning to use biscuits to hold the mitre in place while the glue sets but am open to ideas

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor J:
Most of us have never worked with merbu, but assuming it isn't a difficult wood to glue, here is what I'd do.

Mill all your parts
Widebelt sand them
Miter the parts
Cut the parts to length
Lay 4 together, flush up the ends
Get some clear packing tape, and tape them together
Flip them over and apply glue

Fold up three parts and get it around the post and tape the final corner
Shoot a few pins if you want and go on to the next
Peel off the tape, give it a quick sand and break the edges

From contributor L:
We would do it with lock miters, easy to glue-up. If you have space between the column and the panels I'd put 3 of the parts together in the shop around an MDF U frame pocket screwed from inside. On site slide them around the columns and glue and clamp the 4th side in place. You may need to use a few blocks inside the enclosure to locate and make solid the whole affair.