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  • Large puzzle

    Puzzle cutters,I need help.I want to cut a very large puzzle and I need to cut it from small pieces so it will fit on my scrollsaw.My problem is I cannot figure out how to cut the small pieces so they will fit together.I hope that makes sense.Thanks for any help.
    Will

  • #2
    Is the size of the entire puzzle too big to cur in half, making the cut as puzzle pieces? Ya know? Cutting the tabs across the width of the puzzle leaving two pieces that will interlock.
    I have had to cut half way across then cut from the opposite side to connect to the cut line in the middle.
    Pacifism is great, as long as everyone is participating.



    StephenD


    The Southern Arizona Woodturners Association
    Desert Woodcrafters
    Grandpa for the 7 most amazing children.

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    • #3
      I have used spiral blades to make initial cuts to bring down to a usable size then switch to puzzle blades. Take care in cutting tabs to mot make them too large. John stokes used a method of stack cutting but I have never really figured it out. I believe he still has that on his site but don't remember where to find it ( new computer old bookmarks went with the old machine)

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      • #4
        Yes it is too large to fit on the saw,that's why I have to use small pieces and put them together if I can figure out how.
        I too am familiar with John Stokes works and I can't figure out either.
        Thanks guys

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        • #5
          OK, so I don't know if this will help you a whole lot of not... mainly because it is not super easy to do. However, I have managed to cut quite a large puzzle on my 18" deep scrollsaw by cutting the puzzle basically into 4 large sections initially.

          The difficult part is that the very first section is tricky to cut in half!! But after that it's all downhill since that pieces are then manageable. I ended up doing the first cut about just over 1/2 way through the board making lots of random interlocks. Then I had to remove the blade and start from the other side. The trick part is having the two cuts intersect in the middle, but it's totally doable!

          With this trick I can cut about a 30" wide puzzle on my 18" saw!

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          • #6
            I've done several large puzzles for events, (wedding, barmitzva,etc) up to 4 feet by 4 feet. I double back adhesive tape a piece of 3/4" thick flat large board on my scroll saw table top with a blade access hole drilled into it. This makes my table top more supportive and makes the large piece of wood for the puzzle much much easier to handle. Then start cutting out sections that you can cut. Like cgeary, I try to cut the jigsaws thru somewhere near middle first--going about half way from one side and then starting over on the other. Then each of those get cut into sections. After that, it's easy peasy. I will say when you are doing really large puzzles, a bigger saw top makes supporting the wood much easier then simply trying to hold it up with a free hand, and it makes those first cuts far less stressful.
            Linda at www.ArtIngrained.com

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            • #7
              A picture would help.
              Scott
              Creator of fine designer sawdust.

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              • #8
                I think I need to explain better what I am trying to do.I do not have a large board that I need to cut up into puzzle pieces.I want to take small pieces of 1/4in plywood and hydro dip them and then join them and then cut them into puzzles.My plan was to keep joining pieces to see how large I could make it.The worst thing is 12 years I made a 60 inch wide puzzle by joining the pieces together,and for the life of me I can't remember how I did it.I think pushing 80 is making me a bit forgetful.I will keep on trying.Thank everyone for your thoughts.

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                • #9
                  That was supposed to be 12 years AGO.I made it sound like I did it for 12 years.

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                  • #10
                    Can't you divide it into thirds? You will need a front, side table table to handle 2/3's, but by cutting 1/3 with tabs all the way down or across, then focus on the first 1/3, then cut the 2/3s down to approximately (2) 1/3 pieces. If it is big enough, maybe by 1/4ths.

                    Add in: I forgot to mention that I agree with the above mention of using spiral blade.
                    Last edited by leehljp; 05-12-2019, 03:16 PM.
                    Hank Lee
                    Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Will M View Post
                      I think I need to explain better what I am trying to do.I do not have a large board that I need to cut up into puzzle pieces.I want to take small pieces of 1/4in plywood and hydro dip them and then join them and then cut them into puzzles.My plan was to keep joining pieces to see how large I could make it.The worst thing is 12 years I made a 60 inch wide puzzle by joining the pieces together,and for the life of me I can't remember how I did it.I think pushing 80 is making me a bit forgetful.I will keep on trying.Thank everyone for your thoughts.
                      Oh, I think that to do that you need to do what is called stack-cutting. The limitation is, of course, if you wanted to do it on a puzzle with a picture glued to the front you'll have to have multiples of the same picture and line them up very carefully.

                      First you'll take your two pieces that you want to join, and stack them up so they overlap (you need to add an extra support board under the the top piece. I usually use a light spray of tacky glue to stick them together while cutting, or sometimes I'll even superglue around the edges and then trim that edge off to separate the stacked parts (depends on the project). Next, you cut your interlocks along this overlapped-tacked section. When you finish the two pieces should puzzle-fit together (if your saw is calibrated to a square 90°). You can re-use the same support board for each section.

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                      • #12
                        On 5/11/19 you said you "hydrodip". I googled hydrodipping and was confused. You do that with wood successfully? I cannot imagine fully immersing wood in water to apply a design. tell more please.
                        Linda at www.ArtIngrained.com

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                        • #13
                          Linda,hydrodipping is something new to me too.I have watched many you tube videos and many were done with wood,many of them looked like they were using hardwoods.I just tried mine for the first time recently using 1/4in thick 5 ply plywood,and I was surprised how nice it came out. I really like the look,and the nice thing I learned is if you don't like the look the first time you can always do it over again using the same piece of wood.The only problem I have with paint is I'm very messy,I have to work outside.Now if I can figure out how to connect them.

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                          • #14
                            Stack cut!
                            Linda at www.ArtIngrained.com

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                            • #15
                              When hydrodipping wood, do you need to apply a sealer/poly/varnish/shellac/other coating first? It seems like even briefly submerging bare wood in water would raise the grain (which normally requires at least a little sanding). Granted hardwoods don't do it as much. It's just not natural to consider doing this to wood. Curiosity kicked in.
                              Linda at www.ArtIngrained.com

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