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How to Deal with Knots Indianola IA

A spike knot is formed when a board is cut right through the length of a branch. A spike knot may be tight at its base (the intergrown portion) and loose at its end (the encased portion).

The Home Depot
(515)287-7269
4900 SE 14th St
Des Moines, IA
Hours
Mon-Sat: 6:00am-10:00pm
Sun: 8:00am-8:00pm

Mccoy True Value Hdw
(515) 961-4755
216 N Howard St
Indianola, IA
 
Acme Tools-Des Moines
515-244-4189
629 SW 9th Street DES MOINES, IA, 50309
Des Moines, IA
 
The Home Depot
(563)242-0349
1850 Lincoln Way
Clinton, IA
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Amana Society Forestry
(319) 622-7554
1300 220th Trail PO Box 189
Amana, IA

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Circle B
(515) 961-5381
1700 North Jefferson
Indianola, IA
 
South Ridge Mall Ste 2002
(515) 287-4720
1111 Se Army Post Rd
Des Moines, IA
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Sears Stores
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Sears Stores
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Mon:10-21
Tue:10-21
Wed:10-21
Thu:10-21
Fri:10-21
Sat:9-21
Sun:11-18
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Mon:10-21
Tue:10-21
Wed:10-21
Thu:10-21
Fri:10-21
Sat:9-21
Sun:11-18

The Home Depot
(515)287-7269
4900 SE 14th St
Des Moines, IA
Hours
Mon-Sat: 6:00am-10:00pm
Sun: 8:00am-8:00pm

Hartzell Wood Stock
(563) 566-2298
111 Center Street P.O. Box 176
Lime Springs, IA

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(563)359-7228
920 Middle Road
Bettendorf, IA
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How to Deal with Knots

How to Deal with Knots



Knots are usually considered defects in wood. They're cut out of boards and thrown on a scrap heap. But take a closer look at a knot. In a hardwood, it's surrounded by stunning grain. Why not make it the focal point of your next project? The best knots crop up on some of the least expensive, lowest grade boards available. Dealing with knots can add extra work to a project, but you don't need any special equipment. You just have to know what you're up against. To begin, take a look at where the three basic types of knots come from in the photos at right.

An intergrown knot is the base of a living branch within a tree. It's surrounded by a halo of circular growth rings. An intergrown knot is also called a “tight” knot because it's tightly bound to the wood around it.

 

An intergrown knot is the base of a living branch within a tree. It's surrounded by a halo of circular growth rings. An intergrown knot is also called a “tight” knot because it's tightly bound to the wood around it.

A spike knot is formed when a board is cut right through the length of a branch. A spike knot may be tight at its base (the intergrown portion) and loose at its end (the encased portion).

 

Use knots for drama. Here's an opportunity to have fun with unusual patterns, as in this spalted-maple kitchen table. It has a comet-shaped pairing of a huge intergrown knot and a very long spike knot. Showing off the incredible swirling grain around a knot turns an inexpensive, lower grade board into a beautiful example of nature's art.

Resawing can be spectacular! A board with knots near an edge yields the most interesting mirror-image patterns, as shown in this piece of aromatic red cedar. Before you cut a board down its length on a bandsaw, hold the board on edge against a mirror. The outside of the board and its reflected image give you a pretty good idea of the book-matched pattern you'll get after resawing.

 


 

Keep your distance from knots when you're cutting them out. It's tempting to get the last inch out of every clear piece, but often it's not worth it. The wood fibers around a knot have a very steep slope. (Right next to the knot, they run almost vertically, the same direction as the branch grew on the tree.) Wood fibers with a steep slope are called “short grain.” Short grain weakens the end of a board, making it unsuitable for rails and legs. Short grain may also cause the end to chip out when you joint or plane the board.

The Way Wood Works 

Pound out an encased knot before ripping a board on the tablesaw. If a saw blade were to catch this knot, it would launch it like a missile!

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