Making siding from basswood sheets

by brae  

I am slowly getting back into my secret HBS Creatin' Contest build behind the scenes.  For this build, I decided to make my own siding from basswood sheets.  You can buy pre-cut basswood strips, but it is cheaper to buy the sheets and cut your own.  No, it won't be as uniform as buying the factory cut strips, but the kind of siding I am after makes that okay.  :D

Since the sheets (and the strips for that matter) had stickers on one side, I marked that side with diagonal pencil lines.  The glue residue will prevent even staining, so I need to make sure I can always tell which side was the back.

I then marked 6" increments.  I also made some of the sections in 8" increments.

I marked 3/8" wide planks.

I cut the sections apart.  In some places, I had to make additional marks to indicate the back.

I then cut the planks.

Here's my pile of planks.  You can see the back markings here and there.

I sanded the fronts and front edges then taped the planks to painting boards for finishing.

8 comments

Comment from: Jenny chapman [Visitor]  

I love this blog, do you use a table top saw and if so what kind. I like the idea of tapeing down the siding to paint. I will be doing a rustic build soon (my first). Doing rustic might give me leeway for mistakes. Thanks for your time and info that you pass on

07/13/15 @ 00:09
Comment from: Nancy Fix [Visitor]

I have been using the “tape them down in rows on a board” technique ever since you mentioned in a previous build (I don’t remember which one) …it makes painting multiple small things so much easier & faster…even so, I can’t imagine where you find the time to do the demo build “Milo Valley Farm” + a “secret” build"…I read your blog in the morning with my coffee and have been able to use so many of your “tips” as a realative “newbie” to minis…Thank you, Thank you

07/13/15 @ 06:34
Comment from: brae [Member]

Thanks so much! :D

I don’t have a table saw, just my scroll saw which I use for larger pieces and more intricate cuts. The thin basswood is cut using a metal ruler and a utility knife. :yes:

07/13/15 @ 07:15
Comment from: Blondie [Visitor]

Whoa – look at you go!! Good idea with marking the backs like that. I hadn’t thought about the sticker causing problems – I’ll keep that in mind in the future. Thank you!

07/13/15 @ 10:49
Comment from: Barbara [Visitor]

Well this is timely. I was about to purchase ready-made siding, but I’m thinking now perhaps I’ll have a go at making some. I’m anxious to see how it’s later applied, so I’m going to “wait and see". Thank you for sharing all these tricks of the trade!

07/13/15 @ 13:48
Comment from: brae [Member]

Keep in mind that this isn’t lapped siding. These boards will abut one another. :yes: It all depends on the type of siding you’re after.

07/13/15 @ 13:55
Comment from: jane s [Visitor]

Oh good pile of work there! They will look fantastic I am sure.

07/13/15 @ 20:04
Comment from: Janice [Visitor]

I have just started using bass wood instead of balsa and like it much better. I have not seen these Painting Boards before, yet another great tip I will take with me. Thank you again.

07/14/15 @ 15:05


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