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What is the best way to staple the bottom of Walter T. Kelley Frames? The design of the bottom seems like it makes them very prone to splitting when stapled.

I don't really want to nail hundreds of frames by hand.

Thanks for your help
I haven't really had an issue stapling the bottom of the Kelly frames. How are you stapling them and what size/length staple are you using?

I've never done it, but it seems that a popular way to avoid splitting is to first soak them in water.
 

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I put about 50 of them together last night, with 1/4" crown staples 1" long. There were 4 that had a small spilt in them, and all 4 of them were still too stout to pull apart by hand. I put the staples in each of the bottom tenons at an angle (meaning not exactly perpendicular to the bottom piece.)

The nails seem to split them worse, in my experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I haven't really had an issue stapling the bottom of the Kelly frames. How are you stapling them and what size/length staple are you using?

I've never done it, but it seems that a popular way to avoid splitting is to first soak them in water.
There is a gap in the bottom bar at the ends that seems to make things more difficult. I am using 18 gauge 1 1/4" pneumatic staples.

maybe soaking would be helpful I will need to try that.

The bottom bars look like this.

84.jpg
 

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Add some humidity. I shot pin nails shot vertically thru bottom bar into side bar. On dadant frames without the groove i shot 1qty 1.5". Crossnailing is not necessary, the glue provides the strength.
 

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There is a gap in the bottom bar at the ends that seems to make things more difficult. I am using 18 gauge 1 1/4" pneumatic staples.

maybe soaking would be helpful I will need to try that.

The bottom bars look like this.

View attachment 9486
Josiah,
I use the 18 gauge 1 1/4" to nail the top bars on, however, I switch to 18 gauge 3/4" for the bottoms. I use Titebond III on both the tops and the bottoms and shoot two staples in the top on each side, as well as two on each side in the bottom, one to the left and one to the right of the slot in the bottom bar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Josiah,
I use the 18 gauge 1 1/4" to nail the top bars on, however, I switch to 18 gauge 3/4" for the bottoms. I use Titebond III on both the tops and the bottoms and shoot two staples in the top on each side, as well as two on each side in the bottom, one to the left and one to the right of the slot in the bottom bar.
Very helpful I will try that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Josiah,
I use the 18 gauge 1 1/4" to nail the top bars on, however, I switch to 18 gauge 3/4" for the bottoms. I use Titebond III on both the tops and the bottoms and shoot two staples in the top on each side, as well as two on each side in the bottom, one to the left and one to the right of the slot in the bottom bar.
I am also curious how you go about gluing the frames. Do you just dip them in glue, nail them and then wipe it off with a wet rag or is there some more refined way to do it. It seems somewhat tedious to glue them, so I'd love to hear tips from the pros :)
 

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Just completed 300 frames. W. Kelley, foundation-less.
ended up purchasing a Senco 3/8 crown staple gun ($200), I am a GC so it will come handy for roofing jobs.
I made the jig to assemble the frames, use glue with a small tip so you can drop a small amount onto the vertical surfaces. It will flow down to the bottom.
Place the bottom piece in - this is where I get frustrated since the cut -(groove) at the end of the bottom rail is smaller than the "tenon" on the side bar. I ended up enlarging the space on a table saw, holding 10 of them together and shaving off a little. Than just press it into place and the 3/8" crown will bridge the gap. I believe the 1/4" will do just fine you will probably use 2 staples on either end. With the glue and staples once it dried it is rock solid.
Hope this helped.
 

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I picked up a harbor freight brad nailer and their 1" brads... I just couldn't find a way to staple them comfortably.

Still had some splits, wish I had known about soaking.
 

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I am also curious how you go about gluing the frames. Do you just dip them in glue, nail them and then wipe it off with a wet rag or is there some more refined way to do it. It seems somewhat tedious to glue them, so I'd love to hear tips from the pros :)
Josiah,
I also use a jig...If you don't have one, make one, or buy one, but it's a MUST! I place my end bars in the jig, and then drop a dab of Titebond III on the inside vertical edge of each "ear" of the side bars. With either a small paint brush or foam brush I spread the glue from the ears that it's dripped down and make sure to cover the entire bottom of the slot that will receive the top bar. Occasionsally, you'll get some running down the outside edge of the end bars, whcih you can swipe up with your brush. I then place in the top bars, give them a good little banging with a rubber mallet to make sure they are properly set and staple.
Flip the jig and repeat the process for the bottom bars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Just completed 300 frames. W. Kelley, foundation-less.
ended up purchasing a Senco 3/8 crown staple gun ($200), I am a GC so it will come handy for roofing jobs.
I made the jig to assemble the frames, use glue with a small tip so you can drop a small amount onto the vertical surfaces. It will flow down to the bottom.
Place the bottom piece in - this is where I get frustrated since the cut -(groove) at the end of the bottom rail is smaller than the "tenon" on the side bar. I ended up enlarging the space on a table saw, holding 10 of them together and shaving off a little. Than just press it into place and the 3/8" crown will bridge the gap. I believe the 1/4" will do just fine you will probably use 2 staples on either end. With the glue and staples once it dried it is rock solid.
Hope this helped.
I'm using the 18 Gauge Staples which I believe are 3/8". It seemed like I was having trouble bridging the gap with them.

What length of staples are you using
 
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