Let's Flatten Some Slabs!
Slabs are no different than traditional lumber, other than the fact they are much larger. They still need to have flat, co-planer sides so when you make your live edge table, island top or other project you have a good platform to start from.
When you mill lumber to two co-planer sides, you need two tools, a jointer and a planer. The jointer starts by making a flat surface on one side of the board. The flat side is then used as a reference surface and put into the jointer, which then gives you your second flat, co-planer side.
The issue with this, once you buy a large slab, is that you can’t run a 36 inch piece of wood over a 6 inch jointer and then try and run it through a 13 inch planer. It just won’t fit!
So how can you flatten your live edge slab? Once you have your slab in hand, you have two options:
The first is to flatten the slab yourself. This method requires you to make a jig out of 2 x 4’s that is larger than your slab. You will level out your slab on your shop floor and use the jig to run a router over the slab, over and over (and over) again, until you have the entire side flattened. You then take the slab and flip it to put your flat face down, and then flatten the second side. Although this is a method you can do at home, it can take a while to build your jig and when you are done with it you have to store it somewhere. A second (in my opinion) bigger disadvantage of this method is the clean up. Most hand held routers don’t have decent dust collection methods so when you are flattening the slab, dust will go E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E! The bigger the slab, the more mess you make.
The second method is that we flatten the slab for you! We use our five foot by 13 foot CNC machine to flatten both sides to equal thickness. This means that all you have to do is pay us for our flattening service and when its done, you come pick it up. No mess to clean, no jigs to build, just come pick up your slab. When we flatten your slab, we don’t do it all at once. We will remove thickness from both sides and then let it sit for a couple of days. This allows the live edge slab to move if its going to. Once its made any movement
When we flatten your slabs for you when can get them to a specific height and when they are returned they are sand ready.
Contact us with your slab flattening needs! We can help you out.