Two hobbies collide as I print something super nifty for my wood habits. A cool thing you can do with router tables is apply a template onto wood, and use a templating bit to match cut. The bit has a bearing of the same diameter as the cutting edges. It rides against your template and cuts away any underlying wood that isn’t shaped like your template. Super handy, but you need a good template to start with. Enter the 3D printer.
I modeled up this little jig so that it hooks onto the edges of a board and gives an exact radius. It is hard to see given the color, but I printed a 1″ text in the bottom to note the size of the radius.
Here is a picture of the jig fully seated, and what the resulting cut looks like. Very clean and smooth. The large circular cutout gives a lot of finger purchase so you can hold it tight and far away from the spinning bit.
One concern I had was with the material. Would the cutting friction heat up enough to melt the plastic. I did 4 cuts on a 3/4″ bit of plywood and everything looked good. If I had a hundred corners to do, I would worry. I could always upgrade to PETG.
The part is available in multiple sizes on thingiverse
My latest round of cheese boards appeared very successful, but it wasn’t all perfect. I bought a few cutting board templates from woodcraft and was some fun board. For example this pepper below would have looked great red padauk.
The idea is that you double sticky tape this MDF shape down to a piece of wood. Use a saw to cut away most of the excess, then use a flush trim router bit to match the wood to the template. That was the idea at least, it had issues.
Everything was going ok until I got to this thicker area. The bit dug in and shifted the pattern despite all the tape. Ok, no big deal, I just need to go slow, and I can smooth that out on the sander.
Nope. It caught again on the other side and split off a big hunk of the board. This one can’t be salvaged any more.
Things didn’t go well with the padauk, but it some odd grain in places and that shape had tight turns. I decided to try a simpler fish design in walnut. There were no tight spots or harsh curves, so I figured this would work better. Plus I did a good job getting everything really close with the bandsaw.
That looks good, let’s give it a go.
Even with the edges tightly trimmed it still dug in hard and shifted the template. I used a lot of carpet tape, and bought a decent template router bit. No idea what the problem is, but I would issue some caution to anyone wanting to try this for themselves.