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  • Hello, just joined you today :)

    Hi everyone,
    I have had my scroll saw for about 4 months now, but seem to be stuck on straight edges for everything. How do you make a nice smooth circle without getting bumpy edges. Also I would like to know how do they get the smooth inverted edge on a blank. I make a lot of clocks, so need to know how to make it look good.
    I have not used the table tilted as yet, what is this used for.
    Thank you all
    South Africa.

  • #2
    Hi Sylvie and Welcome!!!

    I just wanted to be the first to welcome you--I'll let the more experienced scrollers field your questions...
    Bob Duncan
    Scroll Saw Workshop


    • #3
      Hi Sylvie and definitely welcome to the forum. I'm glad you've asked some questions and look forward to hearing the replies as I, too, have a lot to learn!!

      Sue Chrestensen


      • #4
        smooth sailing

        Hi Sylvie, welcome to the site. Smooth curves.... well to cut a smooth curve I don't really look at the line. It is hard to explain , almost intuitive, I just find if you try to follow the line too closely you end up making corrections and then you have the bumps. You need to think in a flowing manner. I am starting to sound like Yoda, sorry.
        Let the saw do the cutting and slide the piece with even pressure Look ahead of the blade not at the point it intersects the line. This works for me. I KNOW there will be lots of other comments.....kind of like Stone soup.

        The tilting of the saw allows you to do bevel cuts and very tight intricate inlays. There are many great books which cover all topics of scrolling, but I think the best way is to see someone in action. Maybe there is a club close by or you may be fortunate enough to attend a picnic.

        Anyway ask any questions you like, there is no shortage of advice here on the forum.
        Happy Scrolling
        "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
        Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21


        • #5


          South Africa??? Did I read correctly South Africa?

          A big welcome to you. Gosh, we are getting around the world now.

          Tell us about scrolling in South Africa, if you would? How is the supply of wood? any problems importing plans and tools from other countries? are there many scrollers in your local area? and so forth.

          but on to your question.

          In the Beginners Questions section there is a thread about practicing techniques. The thread got hi-jacked to a side issue, but I have added the attachment to the bottom again (because I cannot get a link to work correctly.)

          It is an Adobe PDF file of different shapes. Use only on scrap wood, and throw away the results. It is only for warm-up and practice cutting with. I found that if I did 3 or 4 minutes of scrolling on a practice scrap wood my projects turned out better. Only use that portion of a practice that fits your scrap wood.

          By the way if you have a suggestion on how I might improve my selection of practice projects, do let me know.

          For me the big difference was to keep my thumbs up off the project, only my finger tips on the wood. Arms and elbows up also. Moving the wood with my whole arms. I found if I used my thumbs, I used just my hand and wrists to move the wood. I got results like you are getting.

          The other thing is practice, practice, and more practice. You are learning a skill. It is an eye-hand co-ordination thing.

          Last edited by GrayBeard Phil; 03-04-2007, 09:33 AM.


          • #6
            Actually Carl, Yoda would have phrased it something like this.

            "Follow the lines you must, flow smoothly you will New Scroller". (Sorry could not resist)

            Seriously though:

            I had similar issues just months ago (I'm still a newbie). What I have found is exactly like Carl just stated. One thing not mentioned was when using a pattern always try to use the fine line type. I found the broader lines on a pattern always lead to a "lumpy" cut. I have had great improvement, but the biggest improvement just comes from making saw dust and learning from your mistakes.

            Hawk G4, Dremel 1800

            Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati


            • #7
              Originally posted by GrayBeard Phil

              In the Beginners Questions section there is a thread about practicing techniques. The thread got hi-jacked to a side issue, but I have added the attachment to the bottom again (because I cannot get a link to work correctly.)

              It is an Adobe PDF file of different shapes. Use only on scrap wood, and throw away the results. It is only for warm-up and practice cutting with. I found that if I did 3 or 4 minutes of scrolling on a practice scrap wood my projects turned out better. Only use that portion of a practice that fits your scrap wood.


              Hope I have this quote ability is going right this time! Just clicked on the quote button and then deleted what I didn't need. Right?

              Anyway back to saying welcome to the page! It's a great place to begin.

              Phil I couldn't open your link in Adobe PDF. When I started I was given jigsaw puzzle pieces to cut out as I was told because they require lots of turning I'll eventually get the hang of it. I cut lots of pieces, and more pieces, and more pieces! Now I can look back at them and see my mprovement. In fact one set of pieces I painted and stuck on a backing and put a clock mecahanism in it (and wrote the work 'puzzled?' over it) and every time I look at it in the shed it is a reminder that, yes, improvement does come with making sawdust. So have fun and just cut, cut cut!
              Cheers. Teresa .


              • #8
                Light Sabre Saws

                Wise you are Rivari!
                The beauty of scrolling is the pattern is removed from the final product and most imperfections cannot be seen if there is nothing to compare it to.
                One day you will be scrolling Sylvie and everything will come together.
                Then someone with much greater wisdom than I will show you the next level of scrolling. Something like reachin Nirvana

                There are so many different styles of scrolling to choose from, some like fretwork, some intarsia, and some go to the beat of their own drum. All of us enjoy scrolling. If we didnt we wouldnt be here. I will say one thing. If I had this forum 8 years ago I would know twice as much as I do and half as much as I need to.
                CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
                "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
                Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21


                • #9
                  To view the adobe file:

                  Adobe acrobat reader (it is free) must be installed on your computer, as you already know.

                  You may have to clean out your browser's temporary internet files as stored on your local computer.

                  If you have a firewall or other internet security, these products must allow PDF files to be downloaded.

                  If you need help, send me a PM and I will try to help you out.



                  • #10
                    Welcome Sylvie, I can answer one of your questions. How to cut a circle without the bumps. The way I do it is to cut outside the line about 1/16 to 1/8 inch and then sand to the line. Cut a piece of emory cloth about 1/2 inch wide by 5 inches long, fold in half lengthwise and you have a 1/4 inch sanding strip for your saw. Just clamp it in your saw like a blade. Try to relax while you are using the saw, if your fingers, hands, arms and shoulders are tense you will find that it is difficult to follow a line. The others have said it, practice, practice, practice. When I have not used the saw for a few days I will make a few curved and straight cuts on a scrap just to get back in the groove. Have fun with your saw. Mick.
                    Mick, - Delta P-20

                    A smile is a small curve that straightens everything out.


                    • #11
                      Newby to Scrollsaw,

                      Im a carature carver that is unfaithfull and has drifted..

                      I've had a cheep small harbor freight, scroll saw for about a year IT shook the wood apart.
                      and so I decided to upgrade to a better one.
                      bought the dremel 1680 16 for $179.00 was seriously considering the scroll station but $60.00 more was out of my immediate justification... for another hobby. not knowing if it would just wind up in the corner covered in sawdust and spiderwebs..

                      the 1680-16" veriable 500-1600 rpm, saw came with a saw stand, light and blower and a few blades..

                      Iv'e toyed around some with it. and find
                      * the blade loosens in high speed,
                      * high rpm makes it vibriate
                      * the light dont expend enough to get in front of the work,
                      * the twisted blades dont cut fast.?
                      * ther stand is too tall for me to use it in my lazyboy chair.

                      Ive read there Multi-langual operators manual {HA!}
                      but it dont offer much information as to blade replacement
                      i did have some problems with twisted plain end blade popping out until i did close inspection on how they fasten,(not shown in their manual) ?

                      Comments and suggestions welcome.
                      Dremel 1680 & Delta ss250 shopmaster


                      • #12
                        O.T.: Belated Welcome Thomp2


                        Belated Welcome. I see you joined last October, but this is your first post.

                        I just wish we could have gotten to communicate with you before.

                        On the screen's web page near the top is a menu bar. Select Search, and type in dremel. You will find a lot of hits on the so called 'beginner's scroll saw' by dremel. Almost all is complaints about it.

                        There are a few who like their Dremel Saw, but I don't think they are talking about the same model as you bought.

                        When a newbie joins this site and they have spent their money, and we would like to tell them well done, good purchase and all. But we want to be honest, and upfront with you and everyone else. I don't want to be a jerk, but the fact is for just a few dollars more you could have bought:
                        (and I only check Amazon prices. The Delta SS350 plus stand can be had cheaper elsewhere.) This is not a bad saw. And don't forget about Ebay.

                        If you are still with me, I am going to state my complaint again: There is no such thing as a 'beginner's scroll saw'. Zilch, zip, nadda, not happening.

                        There are only inexpensive machines that have traded needed design and construction for low cost. Yes the good machines cost a lot of money, and why they are so good is a long list. Someday, I will buy one of thoes machines myself. But until then I will stay with my 10 year old second hand mid-range Delta 20 inch saw.

                        With regrets on my bad news:



                        • #13
                          Yes i joined long ago but without experiance in scrolling i didnt know what you all were talking about.

                          i did buy the harbor freight 49.00 electrified coping saw basicly it did afford me some use but not much more than the hand coping saw, pinned end blades 5" with very few selections of tpi

                          so when funds came up, i shopped the home improvement stores localy and compaired and bought what i thought i could afford without eating beans for a month....

                          I seen scroll saws for $1,600 or so but my last name isent connected with the trumps or rockerfellers
                          Im just hoping i didnt buy something that self distructs in 5 uses... !

                          Im mostly cutting out little animals for mobiles as i have a grandson who just turned 1 year
                          and i love to see his smile when he visits,, and sees the new things ive made for him..

                          as for very intriciant scrolling, im not sure im wanting to try that, maybe some intarcia painting with wood.
                          but im sure ill have a hech of a time finding 1/2" wood to work with.. as i dont buy from internet.
                          Dremel 1680 & Delta ss250 shopmaster


                          • #14
                            So long as you're having fun, it's all that matters.

                            And if others like what you're doing, it's a bonus .

                            Heck, I started off with a Spiralux saw that couldn't cut anything thicker than 1/4 inch ply (and pretty roughly at that!) but I still remember that saw with affection. It did what I asked of it, and I enjoyed myself into the bargain.

                            There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
                            (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)


                            • #15
                              Hi everyone,
                              Wow! I am impressed. Such a lovely welcome and lots of answers to my questions - thank you all.

                              Yes, I live in South Africa and would'nt want to live anywhere else. My parents emigrated here from England many years ago. I am going to England for a visit for 3 months in August, the first for 35 years, so am very excited about it.

                              Thank you Carl, I will try that and its so nice to know I can get the bevel cuts by tilting the the saw. I did manage to get a book from the library by Pat Spielman and I wrote to him via his printed email, but I did't get any reply, maybe his address has changed. There are no clubs here that I know of, mores the pity, so its great to have found your forum.

                              Thank you Phil for your answer. There does not appear to be very much help about scrolling in S.A. The wood is no problem. I can get 3mm or 6mm sheets cut into strips. I tell them what widths I want and they cut it for me. I have not found any plans as yet, so cut my own patterns. I was not very happy using it at first as it is a Fragram scroll, one of the cheaper ones here and it does not have a slow switch, just the one speed, but I am more confident now. I would love to be able to get some of the magazines advertised on your website, but will have to wait until I get to the U.K. because of the different currencies. I do not know of any other scrollers here, except the one who saw my clocks and suggested I get my own, so I could create different shapes. She does not have much more experience than I do, so we help each other, where possible. She will be thrilled when I show her your replies as she is not on the internet. Tools are no problem, I bought myself an electric drill and the little round sandpaper rings. Sorry but I am a widow now, so cannot ask my husband what they are called. I also bought a Makita Router, to give me the different edges, but that is terrifyingly fast and must admit I have'nt used it much. I tried to download your file on Practicing Techniques, but although I have the Adobe Reader, it would not open up for me. (my computer is an old one and I do not want to tax it too much, in case it crashes on me before I get to the U.K. where I plan to buy a Lap Top) Thank you for telling me to hold my arms and elbows up, as I did find that my thumbs ached too much, because of the pressure I was applying with them.

                              Thank you Mick for your advise too, so I see I must practice a lot first.

                              I have made a few things that I am quite chuffed about, namely a Fairy Flower clock. I got the picture from a sheet of Decoupage paper and just cut around the edge of it on the saw and also I made a Recipe Book Holder in the shape of a cow, you can see these two on my Webshots page, if any of you care to look at
                              I apologize if I am not supposed to give out links on your forum.

                              Once again thank you all very much for your help, it is really appreciated.

                              Take care
                              South Africa.


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