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Steaming Short Pieces

Discussion in 'Tips and Tricks' started by mccloud, Nov 13, 2016.

  1. mccloud

    mccloud "Tiger Rag" back on the tidal Potomac In Memoriam

    I was ready to steam 1" square oak about 2 feet long for bending into external stems. Toting the big wooden steambox and everything else into the basement plus setting it up in limited space, got me thinking that I didn't need anything as large as the steambox to do this small job. A 3 foot section of 2" diam. PVC pipe was clamped to the workbench, a 90 deg. elbow on the bottom and supported with a box. The tea kettle sat on a single burner electric hotplate with a hose from the spout to the elbow. The billet went inside the tube, a rag across the top, and a meat thermometer stuck thru it. The leg off an old pair of Levis was pulled over the tube for insulation. The steam rises and circulates entirely around the wood. Even with the wimpy burner, steam temperature at the top was 200+. After an hour I took the wood out, and it bent just fine! Did 3 pieces this way. So if you only need to steam small pieces, this technique may well do it for you. Tom McCloud

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