Winding sticks are invaluable for helping to check the flatness of large boards, but they become useless if they warp as humidity levels change. So I avoided that problem by making a pair of winding sticks out of MDF and hardboard. These sticks will remain accurate despite varying humidity conditions. The MDF strips, 3/4 in. thick by 1-1/2 in. wide by 2 ft. long, have 3/4-in.-deep grooves to fit the 1/4-in.-thick by 1-1/2-in.-wide hardboard strips. Before gluing up the winding sticks, I chamfered the top edges of the MDF supports. The chamfers will help deflect any bumps or dings and make handling the sticks more comfortable. Click to enlarge. The hardboard strips are glued in the grooves. To make sure the sticks remain parallel to each other, I clamped them top edge to top edge, as shown above. Finally, I lightly sanded all sharp edges and, using a permanent black marker, drew a fine line along the corner of the top edge of each hardboard strip to make it easier to read the sticks when at work. Drawings by Jim Richey. Drawings by Jim Richey.
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