Spiral End Mallet #3: Cutting & Glue-up

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Blog entry by Kent Shepherd posted 08-17-2009 07:24 PM 2787 reads 4 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: The Router Jig Part 3 of Spiral End Mallet series Part 4: Banding the Medallion »

After rounding the first side of the pieces, you will need to set up for the other side. Remember, we have 2 jigs, one for each side of the pieces. I told you from the start you would be dealing with only one radius, which you determimed at the beginning of the project. I kept my compass set, and will need it at this time.
The position of the work piece is critical now. Take the compass and draw an arc on the jig. Place the pivot point right on the edge of the routed slot in the jig.
Note—I almost forgot a very important part. When making this jig, the base of the jig, which is mounted to the router table, must be moved on the router table exactly the diameter of the router bit you’re using. I used a 7/32” spiral bit because that’s what I happened to have. 1/4” would work just as well. Remember, I glued a strip on the bottom of the base jig to ride in my miter slot. It is important now to keep the base lined up properly. Before you route the radius for the second jig, move the base the amount of your bit diameter. all this is because the radius on on side of the routed slot is not the same as the other side. One jig cuts on the inside of the slot while the other cuts on the outside. If you don’t compensate, the pieces will not match. I hope you understand this, as it’s seems really hard for me to write it clearly. This principal is critical to the success of your project. It also applies to any curved routing you might do, so get it now. I used 2 jigs in order to keep the zero clearance on both. If you used one jig, the slot would end up double wide.

Now place the piece in the jig, lined up with the compass marks you have made, and clamp.

Route your pieces and then lay them out on the drawing you made in step one. If they don’t match perfectly, you can tweak the pieces, either by re-routing, or make new pieces. Simply shift the piece in the jig in relation to the arc you have drawn. You might need to redefine the arc at this time. On some of mine I only changed the final piece to fit. It all depends on how perfect you want it. I didn’t worry about the center too much because I drill a 1/4” hole to accept a dowel. You’ll see this shortly. Now glue the pieces. I found it works well to glue to a piece of 1/4” plywood. In the picture you’ll see I hung it over the edge of my bench, and clamped to the bench. That way you have good access to clamp. Start with one piece. Clamp it and work off of it. That way it’s not sliding all over the place. Glue all six pieces. You can clamp across to pull everything in tight. I left quite a bit of excess on the outside of the pieces. It doesn’t matter as the will get cut off later.

When it’s dry, go to your drill press to cut the circle. I used a 2 1/8” hole saw. If you do a different size medallion, you’ll have to change this. If you don’t have a drill press, wing it! Actually you should be able to do it by hand. Clamp the plywood in firmly. The picture explains all this better than I can.

Notice the center hole. This is going to help us later. That’s it for now. Part 4 coming—-Whenever!
I show how to band the medallion.


7 comments so far

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3675 days

#1 posted 08-17-2009 07:26 PM


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

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10123 posts in 4079 days

#2 posted 08-17-2009 08:33 PM

Reminds me of the good ole “A Team” saying…
...”it’s nice when a plan comes together.”

Looking good!

Thank you…

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

View patron's profile


13608 posts in 3368 days

#3 posted 08-17-2009 09:48 PM

thanks kent ,
this method looks good
for many radius ,
just a new ( pair ) for each !

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

View degoose's profile


7234 posts in 3381 days

#4 posted 08-17-2009 10:29 PM

It seems to me to be a simpler approach for small pieces.
Nice one mate.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 3585 days

#5 posted 08-18-2009 12:36 AM

Good job Kent. I’ll be watching for part 4.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View Grumpy's profile


23997 posts in 3878 days

#6 posted 08-18-2009 02:47 AM

Great explanation Kent. Many thanks for sharing.

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

View a1Jim's profile


117120 posts in 3604 days

#7 posted 08-22-2009 07:42 AM

very cool Kent

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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