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Circle Cutting Jig

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Simple jig allows you to cut perfect circles with a band saw

In the Great Book of Woodworking, the Editors of Skills Institue Press demonstrated how to make a Shaker-style Candle Table. The project required you to cut a perfect circle.

While there are commercial jigs to cut perfect circles with a router or a band saw, attached are plans for a shop-made jig to use on a band saw.

With a little planning you could make one for the scroll saw as well.

 

Big Book of Intarsia Woodworking  Simply Wood

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Comments (15 posted):

wood-n-things on 12/04/2013 13:07:52
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Interesting article.
BobD on 12/04/2013 13:41:43
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I know. It's tough to cut a circle on a band saw or a scroll saw. This would make it a lot easier. Rolf made something similar to use with a disc sander for the gear clock he worked on.
Flying Pigs on 12/04/2013 16:54:17
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I do not have a band saw but have seen circles cut on a table saw. Basically all you need is a table saw sled and you are ready to go. You can get numerous videos and discussions just by Googling "cutting circles on a table saw". Here is one: Not sure what happened with the other link. I deleted it and here is a different link that should take you to a table saw video on cutting circles: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wxbzrf4z_cg
SteveK on 12/04/2013 18:51:34
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Original link went to another article. Couldn't you build a jig like a bandsaw jig for use on scrollsaw?
BobD on 12/05/2013 08:44:44
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The article gives plans for the bandsaw jig, which could be adapted for the scroll saw. You'd have to be more careful using it, and I'd consider using a large spiral blade...
wood-n-things on 12/05/2013 11:07:40
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I don't understand why people are saying the link takes them somewhere else it takes me to the jig article.
Arcy on 12/05/2013 11:11:30
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Wouldn't a large straight blade be better than a spiral for this? The jig should keep the blade always running a straight line tangent to the circle. I wouldn't set up something like this for a tiny circle, so I'd expect a large scrollsaw blade would fit the turning radius and would track better. --Rob
BobD on 12/05/2013 11:49:27
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I was thinking about the kerf and flex of a scroll saw blade... a spiral blade produces a bigger kerf, so it's less likely that the blade would get bound up... But I can see the logic of your method as well. Bob
SteveK on 12/05/2013 13:04:08
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:confused:I don't understand why people are saying the link takes them somewhere else it takes me to the jig article. :confused: I don't know what's up. Today it worked! That dovetail bar seems difficult/dangerous to cut.
BobD on 12/05/2013 14:06:18
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I can think of two ways to make the bar... with the table saw or with a router; I think the router would be easier; I get nervous cutting small things on the table was with the blade angled...
Max on 12/05/2013 16:58:44
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I made a similar jig for my band saw and it does work great. I think it could be adapted to the scroll saw but I've no need for it. I don't like the idea of cutting circles on a table saw...too many close calls with straight cuts.
sherweld on 12/05/2013 17:42:31
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I can think of two ways to make the bar... with the table saw or with a router; I think the router would be easier; I get nervous cutting small things on the table was with the blade angled... Perhaps a third alternative would be the bandsaw. I've been satisfied using any three of these tools for similar projects. The dovetail slot could be made on the bandsaw with three pieces (a base, and two top layers with beveled edges forming the slot fastened to the base) I have done same or similar many times. A bit of care is required to ensure the sliding "stick" has parallel sides, but in this application, I don't believe that is overly critical.
SteveK on 12/05/2013 17:48:17
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Hmmmm: I don't have a band saw. I think you would be close to spinning bit for second side. Maybe cutting the piece from a wider blank on the table saw could work.
BobD on 12/09/2013 09:02:38
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I'd use a push stick and a router table... or lock the blank down to a larger piece of wood with double-sided tape... But, yeah, that dovetailed bar is the difficult part. I've never tried cutting a circle on a table saw...
Fay P on 12/10/2013 22:41:04
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It looks so interesting, but I'm a bit afraid of a table saw. That blade looks so mean that it could eat up a few fingers. I just finished cutting out my bowl press on the scroll saw and it turned out great. I used about an inch thick ply wood that was a door to an old cabinet. I went slow., but I got 2 really nice circles. Now I just have to get some carriage bolts for it and then maybe I can try to cut out a bowl. I will take a piece of scrap wood and try the table tilt on my scroll saw. It 'll be interesting and that video was so interesting and he made it looks so easy. When I clicked on the link I got the video with no problem but I had to laugh as it showed him with his mouth open when it first started. I got a kick out of that. Reminds me of Uncle Dick, who passed back in the 80's. He used to love to build things and he loved to show me things he had made and such and he made things look interesting too. Sure do miss him. Have a great evening Fay
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