Saturday, July 29, 2017

Cutting the circular top

It was a puzzle to figure out the best way to cut the circle out of the top. One way would be to use a stationary band saw and swivel the wood around on a table using a central point to spin it around. But I worried that it would be too big and heavy and unwieldy. I thought instead I'd use a jigsaw attached to a piece of wood that could be fastened to a point in the center, and then swiveled around like a drafting compass. Well, I mentioned these weeks have been fraught with error and this was a big one.

At first, things looked great

But then, everything went wrong because jigsaw blades are flexible, and the pressure, bent the blade in a bit due to the centrifugal motion. So... my circle was ruined - see below

That was frustrating. Had to go to the store, buy more wood, glue it, clamp it, etc. That cost me two days of work. But again, sunshine, breeze, tools, noise, sawdust = not bad!

I realized a MUCH smarter move than a jigsaw would be a router. Router bits don't bend. I put the router on a piece of thin MDF, and used the same technique of swinging it around a central point like a drafting compass. This worked wonderfully well.

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