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  • aquarium

    I am a new scroller(Mar12) with an Excaliber21 saw. I am having a hard time following a pattern line, straight or not. I have tried varying blades,tension, feed speed, stroke speed. My saw does not always maintain a 90 degree cut, especially with curves. Can anyone tell me what I am doing wrong?
    I have been working with wood for over 40 years, with extensive finishing and cabinet making experience, having most available stationary and portable power tools but cannot master a scroll saw. Can somebody help??


    I moved your thread to a more appropriate forum to maximize traffic and get you more responses to your post/request/question.
    Last edited by wood-n-things; 06-11-2012, 01:11 AM.

  • #2
    Hi Aquarium,

    Welcome to the forums and to scrollsawing!

    What type of wood are you cutting, how thick, and what sort of blade are you using?

    Common problems that can cause skewed cuts include dull blades, low tension, and overly aggressive feed speed. It is more likely in thicker and harder woods.

    Practice is the only sure way to improve your pattern following skills. Look a bit ahead of where the blade is cutting and try to keep your feed slow and smooth. Some people find a magnifying lens helpful.

    --Rob

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    • #3
      Cutting

      The usual reason that people don't maintain a 90 degree cut (me included) is that we tend to push the blade to one side. Focus on keeping the blade straight vertically and let the blade do the work.
      Jack

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      • #4
        Along with the reasons stated above. With a few exceptions most blades will cut to one side more aggresively than the other because of a burr created during blade manufacture. We all learn to compensate for this with experience.
        Rolf
        RBI G4 26 Hawk, EX 16 with Pegas clamps, Nova 1624 DVR XP
        Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
        Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
        And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association

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        • #5
          Hi Aquarium, good advice above. Steve Good runs a series of video tutorials on cutting straight lines, curves, et al

          Scrollsaw Workshop
          Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

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          • #6
            Rolf is correct about the burr. You have to move the wood some degree to the right to stay on the line.
            FD Mike
            SD Mike

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            • #7
              Jack, Mid-Hudson valley, near Peekskill? My niece lives there.
              Betty

              "Congress needs to realize it is a government of the people, by the people and for the people. Not of the people, by the people and for Congress." - Dr. Benjamin Carson, Pediatric Neurosurgeon, Johns Hopkins Hospital

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              • #8
                Thanks to all who offered advice, I am trying to concentrate on all those suggestions. I think I expect to much to soon, I'm still in scroll saw school. All my projects have been in cherry, walnut, wenge, rosewood in 3/4 stock. I'll try for patience..............

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                • #9
                  Hello Aqarium, my name is Tony,aka,Toneman from Paris, Texas. I am by no means an expert (started scrolling Jan. 2012) and also use an Ex 21. I also started with 3/4" hard wood, and experienced the same problems, so, I tried 1/4" and 1/2" baltic plywood and found it much easier to stay on line. I slowed my saw down to 3/4 speed and went to a larger blade (#5) and this gave me more control. Like I said, I am no expert, this just seemed to work for me. Now, I can use smaller blades and cut a little faster and can stay on line on fret patterns and portraits.

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                  • #10
                    Hi, and welcome to the forum. You certainly selected beautiful but difficult to cut woods to start. I do mostly intarsia and swear off cutting wenge ever again each time I forget that promise and do it anyway. Selecting the correct blade for those woods is important. 3_M, also known as Mike the Flying Dutchman blade expert would be a lot of help. Give him a call. Blade tension is also very important. There should be no more than a 1/8 in. deflection in the blade when pushed from the side.

                    Other than that, practice is, indeed, the way to cutting well. I might suggest getting some of the less exotic woods like poplar or aspen which are both very easy to cut and inexpensive enough to justify using for practice.

                    Jan

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                    • #11
                      What Jan said. 3/4 inch wenge is difficult cutting (but I love the wood). Get some good blades and work with poplar to get oriented. And don't push so hard. I think I'm going to write that on the inside of my safety glasses.

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                      • #12
                        thanks, SDguy

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