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Old 11-22-2013, 04:01 AM   #1
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Default Making me crazy!

First off, Mike, I was happy to get my FD blades so quickly. Thank you.

I am going nuts though. I can't follow a line to save my life!! Straight, curved, angle, curly. Give it to me an it will be immediately mutilated!
I am looking down on top of my practice pattern but I can't see where the blade is actually cutting. Also, are there any beginner secrets to moving the wood about smoothly.
I was planning to beg help at the local club meeting this week and totally forgot to go. Sheesh!
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Old 11-22-2013, 05:05 AM   #2
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Not sure if it will help or not, but I find that if I have any side pressure it's very hard to follow my lines. What I mean is that I have a bad habit of trying to push sideways on the blade as opposed to straight in towards the teeth. I have to remind myself to steer the piece into the front of the blade instead of trying to push it sideways into the blade...if that makes any sense.

Hope it straightens out for you (See what I did there?)
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:40 AM   #3
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Beckey, it sounds like you are trying spiral blades. Is that true? Spirals are harder to control but you will get the hang of it with time. Remember, you are allowed to color outside the lines, or in this case, cut outside the lines.
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:11 AM   #4
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Beckey, here's my go at helping to solve your problem, try not looking over the top, you need to be in front of the saw either stood or sitting down, try looking down at about 45 degrees to the pattern, that seems to be the angle at which I'm looking at my patterns, you can always alter this to suit yourself. I have my saw tilted (the rear feet are lifted up 2 inch, I also sit down by the way) it gives me better vision of the pattern, then when cutting don't look at where the blade is cutting but look in front by about 1/2 an inch. It's just like driving a car you don't look at the road just in front of the car but several yards further forward.
I hope this goes some way to helping you.
happy scrolling
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Old 11-22-2013, 10:06 AM   #5
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Practice, Practice, Practice. Your turns and curves will improve with your hand to eye coordination. In no time you will be cranking out all sorts of angles.
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Old 11-22-2013, 12:18 PM   #6
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Make sure you have high tension on your blade. You want to hear a high "plink" when you pluck the blade. Also, be aware that most flat blades have a burr on the right side of the blade. This causes the blade to cut to the right. You have to learn to compensate for this. With practice, this becomes easier.
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:26 PM   #7
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Becky, Mike gave the best advise I've seen on here, you have to steer your car right and left in order to go strength ! When you start down the road you don't just point the car and never turn the wheel until you get to a corner ! You have to Wiggle the Wood to go straight. Also try cutting thicker wood (3/4") not thin, it's easier to control.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max View Post
Beckey, it sounds like you are trying spiral blades. Is that true? Spirals are harder to control but you will get the hang of it with time. Remember, you are allowed to color outside the lines, or in this case, cut outside the lines.
Max, I am using a 5R FD blade
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:30 PM   #9
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Dan, hit it on the noose. I move my wood some degree to the right , this makes it easier to stay on the line. Like others have said, good tension low feed rate. Let the blade do the cutting.
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Old 11-22-2013, 08:41 PM   #10
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We have all been there (and some of us revisit the "can't follow the line camp" frequently).

It is the rarest of person who sits down at a scroll saw and cranks out perfect work in their first weeks. I think back to some of the stuff I made for Christmas presents that first year and wish I could recall them, recut them and replace them--but it was a gift from the heart so I don't dwell on it too much.

Take your time, slow the blade down if possible, don't obsess on the line and try to relax your wrists, elbows and especially your shoulders. Use gentle pressure into the teeth of the blade and remember it is the work that moves, not the blade. In another thread, someone told you to look about 1/4" past where the blade is. Until you get comfortable, I would cut that in half and look only slightly past the blade.

YOU are driving the wood. Don't let it drive you (crazy).
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