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Buttons for table tops

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edmund

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Hi everyone, I have some general questions for those of you who make your own buttons for securing table tops:

1. is there a general rule of thumb as to how big they should be?
2. is there a general rule as to thickness?
3. is there a general rule as to the depth of the groove in the apron the button slots into?
4. should the lip of the button that slots into the groove in the apron run across or with the grain?
5. do you only need to fit buttons to account for movement across the grain or should you use them to account for movement with the grain?

Feel free to add any other bits of information that I should need to know as well.

Thanks, E
 

MikeW

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Hi E,

There's no real rule. They need to be large enough to allow the amount of expansion you anticipate, and thick enough to hold securely.

I most often use a biscuit joiner for the grooves, unless I want a more polished presentation, then I use a router with an 1/8" upcut spiral bit. But the depth is about the same as for a #20 biscuit.

You do need to account for wood movement, so don't let the buttons enter fully into the groove, nor be too close to its edge.

Buttons all 'round. This is as much to secure the top to the apron as much as allow movement. It also helps prevent minor cupping if the top is so inclined.

Take a look at Alf's anniversary tables project (in the completed projects forum). You'll get an idea.

Mike
 

edmund

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Steve Maskery":33joawoa said:
If it is of interest, go to my site and go to Buttons on the Resources menu.
Thanks Steve. Like the website and your furniture. The guide is very good - although I'm a bit less automated so will have to make some adjustments for my medieval set up :D
 

les chicken

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Steve

Nice simple and effective jig, will put it onto my list of TTD. May be you should send details to "Norm" he still does his long hand.

Les
 
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