1. Visiting from the US? Why not try DIYnot.US instead? Click here to continue to DIYnot.US.
    Dismiss Notice

Skirting in curved bay window

Discussion in 'Wood / Woodwork / Carpentry' started by SW3103, 24 Aug 2015.

  1. SW3103

    SW3103

    Joined:
    18 Apr 2009
    Messages:
    9
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    I’m looking for some advice on how to fit skirting board (6” ovolo) around a curved bay window. This question has been asked many times on various forums, and the most popular answer appears to be using kerf cuts (some say back, some say front). I sat on my decking for nearly 4 hours cutting grooves into 3.5m length of MDF skirting using a multi-tool (my index finger is still numb 3 days later!), and all was looking promising until I actually screwed it to the wall. CRACK!

    I’m now thinking that my best bet would be to use smaller mitred pieces of skirting, and carefully glue them to the wall. I have experimented with six small pieces, and I think this could be the way to go. I would appreciate some advice on the following, and any other tips that could be offered:

    1. How wide should each section be (I was thinking about 50-60mm)?
    2. Will it be better to use MDF or wood (considering it will require a lot of sanding)?
    3. Which angle should I use for cutting (I read 10° although this seems quite straight)?

    Thanks
     
    Last edited: 25 Aug 2015
  2. JobAndKnock

    JobAndKnock

    Joined:
    30 Sep 2011
    Messages:
    3,994
    Thanks Received:
    813
    Location:
    Lancashire
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Your multitool saw blade kerf simply wasn't deep enough, and probably wasn't wide enough - a multitool has a very thin kerf whilst a mitre saw has a 2.5 to 3mm kerf. If you fix a batten to the floor and soak the MDF it will bend if rested against the top of the wall and the batten and left overnight. It may require a number of soakings to get the curve you need, but it does work with unpainted normal (brown, not green) MDF. It won't, however, work with softwood. Sometimes the procedure can be speeded up by tying a Spanish windlass between the corner of the floor and the centre of the curve, twisting to apply extra pressure and tying off
     
  3. SW3103

    SW3103

    Joined:
    18 Apr 2009
    Messages:
    9
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Thanks for the reply. I'll give this a go and report back.

    With the amount of rain that's been forecast in the South of England, I can probably just leave a length of skirting out in the garden for the next few days!
     
    Last edited: 25 Aug 2015
  4. foxhole

    foxhole

    Joined:
    14 Mar 2006
    Messages:
    15,476
    Thanks Received:
    1,695
    Location:
    Kent
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Have used both methods, if you are painting then mdf is ideal, you can dampen it and place in front of the bay and apply pressure to the center with a timber screwed to the floor boards, move the board in an inch every hour and keep the mdf damp until it reaches the centre.
     
  5. SW3103

    SW3103

    Joined:
    18 Apr 2009
    Messages:
    9
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    It's taken three weeks, but JobAndKnock's suggestion has worked.

    The first week I left a length of skirting board at a 45 degree angle against the wall, and went on holiday for a week. Gravity and rain did the work for me, although there was still work to do. I used some nylon straps that I normally wrap around my roof box to surround the skirting board, and gradually tighten them to increase the curve. I used my daughter's paddling pool to soak the wood, and although the curve increased, it was starting to bend more in the middle rather than curving nice and evenly (IMG_2216.jpg).

    I then built myself a jig using a couple of palettes (IMG_2222.jpg), and spent the final week soaking and further manipulating the wood to try and get a more even curve.

    Today I very carefully screwed the skirting into the bay, and although there is at least one gap that is as wide as the skirting itself, I'm pretty happy with it (IMG_2227.jpg).

    Thank you!
     

    Attached Files:

  6. gregers

    gregers

    Joined:
    28 Mar 2008
    Messages:
    6,301
    Thanks Received:
    500
    Location:
    Sussex
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    well done you,looking good.(y)
     
  7. Vim

    Vim

    Joined:
    20 Mar 2016
    Messages:
    31
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi All,

    SW3103 - your skirting board looks really good. Im also in a bit of a dilema. I have a bay window and i need to fit skirting board to this.

    Im wondering if i can bend MDF skirting board in the same fashion as SW3103 has??

    MDF is my prefered type of skirting and i rather bend it in place rather than making lots of cuts.

    thanks in advance.
     
  8. gregers

    gregers

    Joined:
    28 Mar 2008
    Messages:
    6,301
    Thanks Received:
    500
    Location:
    Sussex
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    vim,yes you can but take it slowly.
     
  9. Sponsored Links
  10. Vim

    Vim

    Joined:
    20 Mar 2016
    Messages:
    31
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi Gregers,

    Thank you for your time in replying.

    Im thinking of putting a chair on either ends of the MDF skirting board (tie the board to the chair) and put a couple of brick in the middle. Hoping that the gravity will slowly bend the skirting board, maybe increase the number of bricks as time goes. Also do i need to soak the MDF or do you think it'll be ok not to, given that MDF tends to bend easily compared to solid wood?

    Thanks again
     
  11. Vim

    Vim

    Joined:
    20 Mar 2016
    Messages:
    31
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    also i forgot to ask if i do soak it what would be the implications? ive been told by some not to soak MDF as that will expand it and ruin it?
     
  12. JobAndKnock

    JobAndKnock

    Joined:
    30 Sep 2011
    Messages:
    3,994
    Thanks Received:
    813
    Location:
    Lancashire
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    It swells when you immerse it completely for extended periods but that isn't what was being done here. Yes water will raise the grain but it is really a case of keeping the water to the minimum which will soften tell grain. The resulting MDF bends will need to be sanded and sealed - but only after it has had time to dry out fully
     
  13. ladylola

    ladylola

    Joined:
    19 Dec 2009
    Messages:
    3,314
    Thanks Received:
    289
    Location:
    Staffordshire
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    I've done similar with wood skirting , soaking and bending. On one job where we didn't have the time I used a baby berko boiler to soften the wood in the steam .
     
  14. Vim

    Vim

    Joined:
    20 Mar 2016
    Messages:
    31
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    Hi Jobandknock and ladylola,

    Thank you for your reply its a real help here. ive taken the plunge and started the process, I'll update on here as i go along.

    Ive sprayed the skirting board with water, i should have completely soaked it but only just saw your reply. Will leave it over night to see what gravity does. Tomorrow I'll completely soak the board with a hosepipe and repeat the process with a few more bricks.

    ladylola - steaming the MDF sounds like a good idea, i've got a steam wallpaper remover i may use that aswell as soaking the board. Out of interest how long did the steam process take?

    Ive attached a pic
     
  15. Vim

    Vim

    Joined:
    20 Mar 2016
    Messages:
    31
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    here the pic didnt attach the first time
     
  16. ladylola

    ladylola

    Joined:
    19 Dec 2009
    Messages:
    3,314
    Thanks Received:
    289
    Location:
    Staffordshire
    Country:
    United Kingdom
    I can't say for definite but I seem to recall it was all done in a day , the job being two circular bays. Must have done a decent job as I was then asked to form some architraves around a porthole window. I seem to recall steaming the timber until it was almost too hot to hold then applying force . I used a couple of short vertical scaffold poles attached to the larger scaffold.
     
Sponsored Links
Loading...

Share This Page