Spiral End Mallet #2: The Router Jig

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Blog entry by Kent Shepherd posted 08-17-2009 06:24 AM 2716 reads 3 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: The Lay-Out Part 2 of Spiral End Mallet series Part 3: Cutting & Glue-up »

OK, here’s the second of our series. We left off showing the bottom side of the jig. I have drilled a hole for the T-bolt in the jig. distance is not critical, but the hole will be about a third from the end in the clamping piece itself. On the underside of the jig, countersink for the head of the t-bolt. I did this with a forstner bit on my drill press, drilling about 3 holes side to side, then cleaning it up with a chisel. This doesn’t need to be precise, just make room for the bolt head. You’re ready for the clamp itself. It’s really pretty simple. Just take a scrap about an inch or so wide, and about 3/8” thick. I used Bubinga (Larry) Actually for 2 reasons. I had the scraps laying there and I really wanted something very strong. after all, it is a clamp. a soft wood would have too much give to it, so you would loose clamping pressure. One picture is worth a thousand words, so I’ll shut up and show you now!

Notice a 1/4” dowel is glued across the end. This creates the pivot for the clamping pressure, along with the T-bolt and star knob. Driil a hole in the clamp to correspond with the T-bolt in the jig. It should be bigger than the t-bolt to allow free movement. I glued sandpaper to the other end to help keep the workpiece in place. This is just a cheap way to make clamps like the metal ones you can buy. There is also the advantage of being able to get really close to the end the workpiece, thus being more secure. The pressure evenly covers most of the piece you’re routing. I then cut rectangles a little bigger than the finished pieces. Size is not critical. You’ll see. Place them in the jig and clamp.

Safety tip——Do not leave the router running while you load and unload pieces. Allow bit to come to a complete stop before touching anything. It would defeat the safety of the clamp system if you do something stupid now, wouldn’t it?

Simply pivot the jig into the now running router bit. Go slow and steady. Use normal feed directions, which actually change for the two different jigs. They pivot from opposite sides. I ran the pieces shown first. You may want to do quite a few at a time, because of set-up time for each side. I liked running this side first, but I don’t know that it matters. That’s it for part 2. It’s past my bedtime. More tomorrow. I’ll show how I set up for the second cut.


7 comments so far

View degoose's profile


7234 posts in 3376 days

#1 posted 08-17-2009 06:44 AM

Looking good Kent … well thought out well photographed nice approach and simply explained.. good blog. I use the purple heart for the same two reasons.. also I don’t have any bubinga LOL
I salute you.
Waiting for part 3 although I know where you are coming from.. still nice to see how an expert does it.
I may use these smaller spirals as a medallion.
Cheers Larry

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View patron's profile


13606 posts in 3362 days

#2 posted 08-17-2009 01:09 PM

great work , here kent .
nice safe way
to get accuracy !
thanks !

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

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3670 days

#3 posted 08-17-2009 04:31 PM

fantastic, it all comes together now. personally I like to see something in the “big picture” and then go into the details – that helps me understand what details we’re talking about, and what part it plays in the big picture… but reading this blog is like being told a fairy story… cant wait for the next chapter and see how it all connects together…

this is a great way to stay safe! Thanks for sharing…I’ll be waiting for the next part

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 3308 days

#4 posted 08-17-2009 07:28 PM

Purplev, I guess I should have posted the final chapter first, huh? I just wanted to keep you in suspence.
I hope it’s a happy ending!


View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3670 days

#5 posted 08-17-2009 07:41 PM

nah… you do it your way… I’m just here to enjoy the ride – and I am.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Grumpy's profile


23997 posts in 3872 days

#6 posted 08-18-2009 02:46 AM


-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View a1Jim's profile


117113 posts in 3598 days

#7 posted 08-22-2009 07:44 AM

Well done

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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