Cedar fence boards

I have some cedar fence boards that I want to cut and use as a fun walkway. Has anyone had success cutting cedar fence boards? Any suggestions on settings? Thinking of running them through a planer first before cutting. Thoughts?

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Thickness is going to be your problem.

Glowforge is really best between 1/8” and 1/4”. Anything thicker than that will give you trouble. Planer City here you come, population: planks.

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I have cut 1/4" Cedar Slats using the PG Walnut setting without any issues. Just make sure you mask the wood first.

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Oh yeah I forgot. Don’t use proofgrade settings, they might work but they are unlikely to be optimal.

Check #6:

Testing will always get you the best results.

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Thank you ~ so far so good! had to plane them down and run a few passes but it does cut.

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I’ve cut 1/2 inch cedar before no problem. I don’t recall the settings I used however.

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Until you hit a knot, then you can pretty much forget about it. :wink:

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Yes you have to choose a nice board to begin with for sure.

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Thank you all for guidance. I’m always a little timid to try a new material so research the heck out of it before. I choose non-treated cedar fence boards and picked out the ones with the least knots then positioned the cuts around the knots. We have a garden bed which sits under a swing that all the neighborhood kids like to use. I wanted to created something functional in this space but still look pretty. Will see how it looks when we get the plants in! Attaching a picture of the process; so far we love it.

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That is really interesting! I’m surprised you could find nice fence boards, where I’m at all of the fence boards have been thoroughly picked over and -still- cost 3x the price of wht they used to be :sweat_smile:

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They were in good shape but they were more expensive than they used to be! I only needed 3 so the total of the project wasn’t too bad and it’s temporary until we figure out what to do.

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That looks really pretty! Will they hold up if kids are walking/running all over them? I mean, will they stay where they are placed since they’re so thin? I hope so, because it looks great!

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Oh hey, that really worked out well! Kudos to you for the extra effort, I think it will pay off.

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I’m going to put them on chicken wire on the back to keep them in place and then put moss/ dirt over the chicken wire. Going to give it a shot at least :slight_smile:

Good idea. I would also seal with with some kind of water protectant. I know that cedar doesn’t rot as fast as some other woods, but when we cut cedars down (about 400 of them on the property), I had my husband make some “rounds” that I could use in crafting. As they dried out, they split down the middles, ruining the rounds. A few didn’t, but very few. At any rate, it wouldn’t hurt to help protect them.

Someone correct me if i’m wrong, but I think that boards are much less likely to split than rounds are. Grain direction and all that.

I imagine you are correct. :slight_smile:

If you want to prevent that splitting or checking as it is called it helps to season the wood by leaving it as a branch or log and letting it dry slowly over months or yrs depending on the diameter. Sealing the ends after cutting helps as it plugs all the ends of the straw like fibers forcing them to dry slower and more evenly.

Good to know. Fortunately I have some cedar logs that have been cut for a few years and are sitting in my craft room in a box waiting for me to make some bracelets, rings, coasters, whatever. I pick one up every once in a while just to smell it. I love the smell of cedar! :slight_smile:

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