How do I bend wood?

I know I said try the shaker steam techniques before.
The post above is a response to this:

**Yeah but that technique isn’t really possible for me :confused: **

I would describe either one of these techniques (steam or bent lam.) as advanced.

You might also look for books/videos/whatever by Roy Underhill (The Woodwright Shop) (not sure about the name of the TV show). He demo-ed old hand-woodcrafts, and I recall one show where he used steam to bend wood.

Norm Abrams is, of course, the master of this kind of thing, but it’s kinda neat to do stuff by hand once in a while.

I’ve bent many hard woods and some soft woods on a hot pipe (dry) for making guitars.

It is important to mention that the type of bending you try (steam, hot pipe) or laminate forming is at least partially dictated by the type of wood you are trying to form - not just the thickness. Thicker, stringier grain woods (oak) bend well with steam. Small grain (maple) don’t do well with steam. This is why a hot pipe is used in guitar making.

(I saw the Norm episode bending the oak for the coat rack. It was very cool use of a 5 gallon metal gas can and 6" PVC!)

Forbin, you are a man of many clamps. Good for you.

Opal, as the wife of a woodworker (and someone who lusts after Forbin’s work) I have to say that getting the materials to do this is quite an investment. If you can’t find a quick-and-dirty way to do this you might want to redesign it. Getting the clamps, etc, needed to do it right will add up fast.

Needless to say, if you’re going to experiment with steam bending, wear goggles and thick gloves, plus be VERY careful; it’s not a case of ‘gently’ steaming the wood and it’s possible to acquire some really nasty burns.

Hi CrankyAsAnOldMan. How are you?
Opal, as I mentioned, this is an advanced technique. If the job were presented to me I’d have a number of different options to explore, but as a beginer your options are more limited. You may not have the number of (expensive) clamps required to do a bent lamination. Alternately, steam bending is a tough place to start a woodworking hobby.
Is it possible to redesign your project and exclude the oval band? A local cabinetshop may be just the place to bring this problem. Have them bandsaw the oval from several glued up pieces, and incorporate the result into your tray.
I’d just hate to see you get turned off to the trade/craft simply because you chose an advanced design for your first project.

Hey Forbin, what is the lamination you made going to be used as? A head jamb or a table apron of some sort?

I have used my car as an oven to bend wood. Soak it, steam it, put it in the form and put it in the car windows up in the sun on a hot day. It seemed to keep its shape quite well, quite a bit better than the wood that I let cool at room temperature.

It’s going to be the base of a podium for one of our beloved elected officials to speak (from?).

Does one speak at a podium? From a podium? With a podium? <--------- preposition emergency here

One stands on a podium, as an orchestra director does. One stands behind, and speaks from, a lectern. A lectern can be the floor-to-chest kind or the table-to-chest kind. An interesting variation is the one with a motor-driven adjustment for the tall or short speaker. The snakey microphone holder makes for some nice giggling when the speaker does all that creaky squeaky adjustment.

It’s a lecturn. You’re right.
I also veneered a ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) lecturn of the type you describe. It is mechanized to allow lowering for people with wheelchairs. The lecturn purchased was oak, and the wall paneling and all furnishings in the designated location was walnut. I made the oak lecturn into a walnut one.

Sorry for the hijack.

Forbin, just curious why you laminated instead of kerf-bent around a frame since it will (?) be out of sight below the rest of the piece?

Forbin, just curious as to why you laminated instead of kerf-bent around a frame since it will (?) be out of sight below the rest of the piece?