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Hard woods and scroll saws

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  • Hard woods and scroll saws

    Hello, I am wanting to cut a rather simple pattern out of a 3 inch thick block of oak. Although the pattern is simple it does have sharp inside cuts that need to be precise. What kind of scroll saw is best for this type of wood?

  • #2
    Amended post

    Sorry, I got the thickness wrong, it is only a one and a half inch thick block of oak.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi NG,
      If you're new to the forum let me be the first to welcome you. There are lots of good, knowledgeable people here who are more than happy to share their knowledge and opinions. Sometimes you don't even have to ask!

      I don't know what your budget is, so it's hard to recommend a brand or model of saw. But, assuming you have a saw that handles 1 1/2" wood (nearly all of them do), the blade is much more important. You will want a skip-tooth or double-tooth blade, which will clear the sawdust from the kerf. Regular blades will clog and burn. You might get away with a #5 blade if you go slowly. You will probably need a #7 or #9.

      If Mike M. (login 3M) responds to your inquiry go with his advice, expecially if it contradicts mine. He's our resident blade expert.

      Good luck!
      Dan

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi NG,
        Welcome to the group!
        You will probably find that any decent scroll saw which will accept plain end (not pin - ended) blades will do a creditable job on your oak. Whew! Am I glad you amended it to 1 1/2 inches thick - you'd have a hard time finding a scroll saw able to take on a 3" piece of anything!
        About blades - Mike M is your best source of info on that - as mentioned above.
        With oak, as with most hardwoods, you will want to cover the top of your wood with clear packing tape - the ordinary kind - not the kind with the fibers in it. This will, by some means not yet well explained, make your cut smoother and lessen the tendency to "burn" the cut.
        You will need to go slowly - if you are not familiar with scroll saws, they are a lot s-l-o-w-e-r than almost any other saws, but they can be ever so much more accurate on lines that are not absolutely straight. Let the saw cut at it's speed with only the tiniest amount of pressure to follow your pattern line, and check often to make sure the blade is still straight (90 degrees to the top of the wood or to the table). That's the place where I make errors - wanting to get through faster than the saw wants to, resulting in cuts that are skewed or even barrel shaped (NOT desirable!!)
        Let us know how you do with your project.
        Sandy

        Comment


        • #5
          I have been looking at the Dewalt DW788 as it has gotten some really high reviews. Here is an image of what I am wanting to cut out:



          I hoping this will not be too difficult. I will probably practice on softer woods first before trying to cut the final.

          Comment


          • #6
            NG,
            The DeWalt should be beautifully adequate!! It's a great saw, and not just for beginners. Some of us would probably do dastardly deeds to get one!!
            You might try cutting a few practice pieces (you could just try the inside cuts - you don't have to do the whole thing ) on some hardwood with a more forgiving grain - I like poplar, but you might try whatever is easily available in your area - because oak has such a strong grain pattern and such an open texture alternated with a denser texture that it may try to get you off the line. If you practice a bit, you'll at least get the hang of making all your boo-boos towards the waste area (if there is one). I'd avoid the softwoods (from evergreens like pine, spruce, fir etc.) for the same reasons.
            If you don't mind telling us, what is the intended use of your project?
            Sandy

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            • #7
              It may seem absurd but I am trying to build a 'working' replica of the box from Clive Barker's Hellraiser movie... that is why the cuts have to be precise as so the two halves (which I am going to make from four pieces) will have to fit back together to form a nice three inch by three inch cube and not have large gaps between the fittings. I could take the easy way out and buy one off ebay but I don't like the ones sold there as they feature the unwanted gaps in the wood and it is more fun to do it myself

              Comment


              • #8
                Welcome aboard NG!
                That sounds like an awsome project! I can't wait to see what you come up with!!!! If you need any brainstorming help, let me know!!!

                Bob Duncan
                Scroll Saw Workshop
                www.GrobetUSA.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Ok, NG-
                  I have no idea what the box was like - having not seen the movie - but I can see that you are going to need to be right on the line - no deviations, because none of it is waste. Must you use oak, or is that optional? Some other hardwood might be more cooperative. (maybe mahogany?)
                  You may want to use a wider blade where the cuts must be very straight lines - like a #7 or even a #9, changing blades to do the corners to a number or 2 down, for cutting a nearly precise corner. I hope you will share your result(s) with us, so that we may all understand what you're doing, and we can cheer you along.
                  Sandy
                  PS I always figure I can make anything I see, for at least 3 times what it would cost me to make it!
                  Luckily, we will still have our tools and our skills when we finish, and we can do other neat stuff, for free, so to speak!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well since you haven't seen the movie, here are some pictures of what the box looks like in various stages. The idea is to start with this:



                    Have it come apart like this:

                    http://www.scrollsawer.com/forum/att...1&d=1139945686

                    ...and then go back together like this:

                    http://www.scrollsawer.com/forum/att...1&d=1139945697

                    The gaps in the first picture are what I am trying to avoid. No one has been able to make one these and have it come together with little or no gaps between the edges. I'd like to be the first to come close.
                    Attached Files
                    Last edited by New Guy; 02-15-2006, 08:10 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      ...and actually mahogany would be the preferred wood to use since that's what they used in the movies but I do not know where to get mahogany from around here. I can readily get red oak in pre-cut 3in x 20in posts from Home Depot but mahogany seems to be a little harder to come by. Let me know if there is a store where I can get some from.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Well, I was unable to get any of the links to work
                        If you have a Woodcraft near you, Mahogany is going to be a heck of a lot easier to cut than 1 1/2" oak. Perhaps I missed it, where are you located? What size is the box your planning on? I may be able to help you out with the Mahogany. I've got tons of 2" Mahogany and if you don't need a ton I could send you some (no, I don't sell wood, so don't ask folks).

                        Kevin
                        Kevin
                        Scrollsaw Patterns Online
                        Making holes in wood with an EX-30, Craftsman 16" VS, Dremel 1680 and 1671

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I am located in Memphis, Tennessee. The box is a 3 inch cube so the 2 inch mahogany would be a bit small. I have attached one of the files from the previous links. Normally, the two halves would be made from solid 3 x 3 cubes but I have tried this approach to no avail. I figure if I cut each halve down to just 1.5 inches thick I could scroll it and get the more precise cuts I'm looking for. Then I could just glue the two identical parts together to form a 3 inch thick star-like piece. Repeat this process and then core out the center of each side down to 1.5 inches and the two halves should fit together like they do in the picture.
                          Attached Files
                          Last edited by New Guy; 02-14-2006, 03:39 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think you misunderstood. I meant 2" thick Mahogany. I could plane it down to 1 1/2". Do you want it cut into 3" pieces or would you prefer a couple at 7ish inches long that you could cut yourself? I have 2 X 4 mahogany. Send me a private message or an e-mail if you'd like some.

                            Kevin
                            Kevin
                            Scrollsaw Patterns Online
                            Making holes in wood with an EX-30, Craftsman 16" VS, Dremel 1680 and 1671

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Attachments have been re-uploaded. They should work now.

                              Comment

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