Posts Tagged ‘pattern making’

Don’t know if this title really says what I want to talk about….

A few weeks ago, I got a job to remove the 1/4″ wood panels from a bunch of cabinet doors and cut a rabbit in the door frames for glass.

Removing the panels was straight forward. the doors are what’s called a “Back Panel” door; meaning the center panel is attached (glued & nailed) to the back of the frame rather than set into a groove cut in the frame. First I drill a hole near one corner of the panel. Then using a flush trim bit and the inside of the door frame as my guide, I rout away the panel from the frame.

The stack of doors after removing back panel

Stack of doors after routing out the center panel

(actually, this picture shows the rabbet too. I forgot to take earlier photos of before & after.)

The next step as a little harder. I needed to cut a rabbet that was 3/8″ wide by 3/8″ deep. Normally, this would be easy too using a rabbeting bit of which I have several. Problem is, I don’t seem to have one that will cut a 3/8″ wide rabbet. Everything else, up to 1/2″ wide, but not 3/8″. So I had to jury-rig a bit & bearing to do the job. (the bearing didn’t quite fit the rabbeting bit’s shaft.)

Rabbeting bit

Once I got things to work (the bearing wouldn’t fall off or run out of round) cutting the rabbet was easy too.

But after routing the rabbet, I needed to square the corners as the bit left them with a 5/8″ radius.

door frame with rabbet for glass

door frame showing the rabbet cut for glass and round corner I need to square

Now, normally, I would use a chisel to square the corners. But I have 17 x 4 = 68 corners to do so chiseling by hand will be a little too slow & costly.

So I made a jig to speed things up.

Corner squaring jig drawing

Computer generated drawing of corner squaring template

Using a computer to lay out the template helps in determining just how deep the template’s corner notch needs to be so the 3/16″ bit doesn’t cut too deep or too shallow into the rabbet.

Now, this set up will also leave a radiused corner but it has gone from 5/8″ to 3/32″. So the glass should fit fine if it’s cut with a little wiggle room.

corner routing jig in place

The corner routing jig clamped in place

corner routed square

corner after routing with 3/16" bit

The end result is a pretty good looking corner, IMHO.


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Granite/Marble cut for the computer's Desktop

I’d say where this computer station is from, but my client (a good friend) might read it.  I won’t say how long I’ve been working on it — off & on, but we’ve had at least one change of Administrations since I started.

The cabinet work is pretty straight forward. It’s 13’6″ long and about 32″ high. Built low to the ground to give as much usable height as possible. It sits under a bank of windows. There are 9 drawers and 6 pull out shelves including a pull out keyboard tray with special drop front. Wood is Cherry solids & plys. Finish is a cherry wine stain from WD Lockwood under a Bartley’s Pennsylvania Cherry gel stain. Top coat is General Finishes Enduro Poly.

The cabinetry has been done for a while. It’s the top that is causing my night sweats. The picture above shows the Granite and Marble that has been cut to resemble a river flowing. (I didn’t do the stone.)  My job now is to make a frame around the stone that fits snugly against all the curves. The frame is 8/4 cherry planed to 1-11/16″ thick.  Did I mention it’s 163″ long and fits between two walls?

The pictures to follow show the process to make the pattern I’ll use to cut the inside of the frame. Click on images to get more info

Now, I don’t know if it’s real clear why I made two patterns. The first pattern is an exact replica of the stone. Because I use 1/2″ flush trim router bits, I have to reduce that first pattern by 1/2″ all around. Then I tack it onto the second pattern blank. The second pattern’s outside is the exact size of the desk top. I position the 1st pattern exactly where I want the stone to sit within the final cherry desk top (the frame). When I rout the 2nd pattern. the 1/2″ flush trim bit follows the first pattern as it cuts away waste on the 2nd pattern. the bit also removes 1/2″ more mdf from the 2nd pattern than the size of the first pattern. If I don’t reduce the 1st pattern by 1/2″, then the 2nd pattern will have a 1/2″ trough between it and the stone. Not a snug fit at all.

All clear now?  (Like mud?)

Next time I’ll show the cherry frame work.

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