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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Blade entry hole bypass--an informal experiment

I've always drilled blade entry holes when making scrolled bowls. However, sanding out the drill marks can be tedious, so I decided to try an alternative approach--cutting into the ring along the grain instead of drilling.  I wanted to see what it looked like, and whether it could serve as an alternative.

I used a pine bowl whose rings had been cut conventionally, except for the smallest ring, which remained to be cut.  Instead of drilling, I cut into the ring along the grain at the designated cutting angle of 27˚, continued the cut around the ring, then glued up the cut.

I noticed immediately that although the grain at the top and bottom of the ring matched nicely, the cut on the side was a vertical one and could not be completely hidden, no matter how well it was glued.  It reminded me of a scarf joint, which is used to join the ends of two pieces of wood, and means that no matter how neatly you join the ends, or how much you sand, there will always be a scar.

Here are photos of my results.  The view of the underside clearly shows what happens when you make the cut, and why the ends can't be completely hidden.