Making Candy #3: Bent Inlays

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Blog entry by Andy posted 03-17-2010 06:48 AM 4384 reads 17 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Bits and Pieces Part 3 of Making Candy series no next part

I couldnt find any info that explained how to make bent inlays without using a router and a template, which is time consuming and limiting. I thought about using the bandsaw to make S shaped cuts and inserting pliable strips, but thought that the rough cuts made by the course teeth would show up, but I was encouraged after reading Blogs by Patron and Degoose on making double curve lazy susans. The cuts were made on the bandsaw and the pieces mated up just fine. So, I made a test piece. I tried cutting curves in a fluid smooth pass, no hiccups and then slipped in a thin piece of contrasting wood, glued it up and clamped it overnight and it worked great. The trick is to keep moving smoothly through the blade, but not too fast or the cut will be too rough. I used a 3/8 skip 6 tooth, but try what you have on the machine, it may work very well.
Use plenty of glue and hard clamping.
Here are a few pictures to illustrate this.

A maple board and strips 3/4’’.
Making Candy 019

I made pencil marks across the face to aid realignment after cutting.
Making Candy 020

This shows the maple board with various thin strips sandwiched in between, ready for glue up.
Making Candy 025

Carefull alignment and several clamps.
Making Candy 028

The finished blank trimmed. If you look close you will see that some of the lines arent as fair as others. These areas can be cut around when making candy, corner splines or handles.
Making Candy 031

Another blank glued and clamped.
Candy 028

Some samples.

Making Candy 030

Making Candy 016

I cut the discs using plug cutters, 3/8, 1/2, 5/8, and 3/4. The larger ones were cut using a 1 1/4’’ hole saw with the drill bit removed. This can be done on the Lennox style and a few others, which still have a shank to slip into the drill chuck.
To shape the dome on the discs shown here on the front of the box, I simply attached them to the end of a dowel using CA, trying to keep the centered, and hit them with the accelerant spray. Then I turned them against the edge of the inflatable drum sander. After getting the shape about right I turned them on the other arbor that has a #150 grit flap sander, and polished them up. No further sanding was needed. I polished all the candies this way. I could not have safely, nor consistantly made the candy without this tool. I dont have the stand, it sits on the counter and is so heavy it doesnt need to be bolted down. I also use this for making spoons, propellors, etc. You can adjust the drums ability to contour by adding or realeasing air. You can put a drum or flap sander or buffing wheels of assorted grits on either end.
Here is a picture.

Candy 5 006

And here is how to make an M&M looking candy or border or inlay strip. Simply cut plugs of various woods and drill corresponding holes, insert plugs, and rebore directly through part of the new plug, in effect overlapping the circles or plugs randomly or in a distinct pattern as you wish. To speed up the process you may want to try super glue (Ca) and spray accelerant. (This will cause some woods to bleed pretty badly, such as bloodwood, so try this on a scrap first.) Also, these finished strips are very fragile because there really isnt any long continous grain left, so cut them to size using a fine tooth hand saw.
Candy 5 008

Thats about it I guess, though I am sure there are many other ways to make inlays and candies.
I hope this answers your questions and encourages you to try these for yourselves.
I look forward to seeing what you come up with,

p.s. Please let me know of any glaring mistakes or voids in my thinking process so I can correct them.

-- If I can do it, so can you.

26 comments so far

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10364 posts in 4288 days

#1 posted 03-17-2010 07:07 AM



Thank you!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

View ABB's profile


24 posts in 3314 days

#2 posted 03-17-2010 08:18 AM

Andy-thank you for sharing! You always come up with extremely creative ideas.

-- Allen, WA

View patron's profile


13641 posts in 3577 days

#3 posted 03-17-2010 08:22 AM

you nailed it , andy !

well explained .

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 3666 days

#4 posted 03-17-2010 08:23 AM

Great blog Andy. Thanks for letting us in on you secrets. Lots of possibilities with this technique.

Keep it up.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View blockhead's profile


1475 posts in 3544 days

#5 posted 03-17-2010 10:04 AM

Another well done, easy to follow blog. Thanks for taking the time to put this together and giving us the inside scoop.

-- Brad, Oregon- The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first.

View stefang's profile


16209 posts in 3570 days

#6 posted 03-17-2010 11:51 AM

Great blog Andy and a totally creative use of David (Patron’s) basic technique which can be used in so many ways. This is what makes LJ such a great site. Woodworkers sharing and learning from each other.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4058 days

#7 posted 03-17-2010 11:52 AM

Thanks, Andy. This is a pretty well documented tutorial.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View degoose's profile


7245 posts in 3590 days

#8 posted 03-17-2010 12:09 PM

Between you and David… well.. will I ever catch up..

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View ellen35's profile


2739 posts in 3668 days

#9 posted 03-17-2010 12:22 PM

This is so cool… like Degoose, there is not enough time in the day….ugh!

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6866 posts in 4215 days

#10 posted 03-17-2010 01:29 PM

Really nice write up Andy.

As always, beautiful work.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View Eagle1's profile


2066 posts in 3300 days

#11 posted 03-17-2010 01:47 PM

Nice way of using inlay technique..

-- Tim, Missouri ....Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what the heck happened

View Alan's profile


443 posts in 3640 days

#12 posted 03-17-2010 03:52 PM

Thanks Andy great explanation again.

-- Alan, Prince George

View whitedog's profile


652 posts in 3693 days

#13 posted 03-17-2010 05:46 PM

Thanks Andy… as always I enjoyed seeing how the magic is done

-- Paul , Calfornia

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 3522 days

#14 posted 03-17-2010 06:01 PM

Great job as usual. Interesting information


View Rob200's profile


313 posts in 3405 days

#15 posted 03-17-2010 06:27 PM

you have gave me some Ideas on what I want to do no my grandkids bed thank you for you blog

-- Robert Laddusaw and no I am not smarter then a fifth grader ( and no I canot spell so if it is a problem don't read it ))

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