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Glenn Dean (Vatorman) | all galleries >> Better Baskets by Babcock > Hoop-ing
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To bend wood, it must be soaked. In the background we see the bath used to soak the hoop strips in hot water provided by the boiler. The wetted hoops would then be wrapped around the forms centre-left to dry into shape.

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Rob Stevenson 06-Jun-2012 12:44
"To bend wood, it must be soaked."

That's a common misconception. It's even common among those who've worked with wood all their lives (as I have.) But the truth is, it's the heat that makes the wood pliable enough to bend, not the soaking. So it's the heat of the water that does it, and steam would work as well. Even dry heat would work though it might cause tiny surface splinters to form, depending on what wood is being bent. For example, the very rounded form of an acoustic guitar body is made through the application of dry heat to the wood.
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