jaimeedwards

Need routing help....

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Folks,

I have found myself in a pickle and desperately need some advice. As usual I started my Christmas projects a bit late. As well, I decided to go "off reservation" and created my own project with no plans (this originally meant no paper plan, but as you will see can have another interpretation!)

I wanted to build a wooden candy cane ornament. I have cut and laminated maple and bloodwood into a 3/4" square candy cane shape (see photo.) My thought was to use a template bit to flush up the sides and then a round over bit to round all sides to essentially get a cylinder cross section.

I am now trying to figure out the best way to route this while avoiding a climb cut (or more precisely avoiding launching the cane across my garage.) I started taking a very light cut and I can do one side by following the outline with a traditional non-climb cut. But when I flip it over I can't seem to avoid a climb cut and even with the slight cut it still wants to grab.

What am I missing???

Any suggestions to get these things complete without creating too much striped kindling would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks all !!!!

post-6146-0-52203500-1324441008_thumb.jp

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Do you have a spindle sander? That would be my first choice. Routing end grain like that on the router table has never worked out well for me. If you can somehow bring the router to the piece and do it handheld, that would be safer for both you and the cane ;) Climb cutting while holding the router is doable, on a table is no good. Hopefully others will chime in. Good luck!

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I'd use a rasp or a file. You may not be perfectly cylindrical, but the ornament will have more charm, and if I am interpreting your "3/4" square" description correctly, that's a pretty small piece to shape on a router.

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Hi

I use a router table too What bother me is that when I cut stock, it tend to grab the piece in the direction I push it on the table. Is that normal? I push the workpiece from right to left when very light passes. I can fully control the cut, but the pulling action bother me some what.

I also routing with the long grain and not against it.

The piece is also on the left side of the fence, and not between the bit and the fence.

BTW...how does you read the grain in European pink beech wood? I do have some with nice ray flakes, but no to very little indication of grain flow.

Merry Christmas to you all.

Johan

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I'm with Wilbur Pan and Josh...rasp - I have one - a Depot cheapy that's round on one side and flat on the other...spindle sander is nice for the curves if you have one. I don't - right now I use my drill press and a sanding set. A belt sander, will work for the outside. To bring things closer, I sometimes use a 4.5" grinder with a flap wheel.

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you can use spindle sander to get the right shape. Then try hot glueing the wood to the table and then using a router to keep it from being thrown. light passes for end grain and if you can remove any wood first before routing so that it does the least amount of work possible.

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No need to glue the piece to another piece for the router table, simply put a clamp on it to hold the piece. Consider making a small parts jig as well that uses toggle clamps to hold the work piece in place. Either way, this will allow you safely route the small part while keeping you fingers far away from the spinning bit.

Next, the work piece should always be in direct contact with something other then bit. Make sure you are using a starting pin when easing the piece into the router bit until you make contact with the bearing. Not using the starting pin can make your work piece a projectile just as easily as doing a climb cut.

When dealing with end grain, the key is making LIGHT passes. In the case where you are flush trimming to a template this means having the rough cut as close as possible to the final cut (1/16" or less), especially being careful of the transition from end grain to straight grain, that is where you will get tear out. A sharp bit goes a long way to preventing tear out as well. If you have the means, a shear cut bit or a spiral bit will also lessen the chances of tear out.

Now, to prevent a climb cut, you need to really look at the direction you are push the piece in relation to where the bit is on the part. You always want to push the piece against the direction the bit is spinning. This results in the direction changing when you go from the outside of the part to the inside. If I am thinking about this right, this means moving the part clockwise for the outside perimeters, and counter-clockwise for the interior perimeter.

My advice is try this on a scrap, but bigger part first. You will have more control over it, and you will get the feel for the direction you need to move the part. Make sure you fingers are never in line with the bit, never within a couple inches of the bit. Use a clamp or small part jig when this isn't possible.

Finally, if for one moment you don't feel confident in doing this on the router table, go the hand tool route as others have recommended.

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Thanks for all the replies so far!

I don't have a spindle sander, but I do have sanding drums for my drill press. These will certainly let me flush the sides up to the pattern (vs. using a pattern or flush trim bit in the router.)

My bigger challenge is how to do the roundover.

Maybe I will get a rasp and try that out. I have 15 of these to do so I am not sure how quick work I can make with the rasp.

I had thought about hand routing this (I have both a full size hand router and a smaller trim router) but I was not sure that this really changed anything for the better (vs. just turned the whole setup upside down.)

I understand which is a climb cut, clockwise vs not (assuming I pay attention) but the problem is that I can do a non-climb cut on 1 side that goes downhill on the grain. When I flip the piece a non-climb cut will go uphill on the grain.

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My bigger challenge is how to do the roundover.

Maybe I will get a rasp and try that out. I have 15 of these to do so I am not sure how quick work I can make with the rasp.

With a rasp or a file, I'd use it to make a 45ยบ bevel all around the candy cane. Then I'd knock off the corners of the bevel. Then I'd lightly smooth out the facets with sandpaper.

Again, assuming I am right about the 3/4" diameter description, I would guess it would take me about 10 minutes per candy cane, tops. Maybe 5 minutes once I get into the groove.

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