Intarsia #4: Hummingbird Day 3

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Blog entry by TripleB posted 08-10-2012 06:03 PM 2193 reads 1 time favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Hummingbird Day 2 Part 4 of Intarsia series Part 5: Hummingbird Day 5 »

The leaves are coming along nicely so far. I was able to get the leaves that are cut, 80% shaped. At this point I don’t want to completely shape them until I am a little further along.

You may have noticed that I “Tack” glued the leaves together, I don’t think I explained this well in the previous post. I use Alleen’s Clear Jell Tacky glue for this purpose because it tends to come apart easier later on if I need to take something apart to refine the shape. The other Aleen’s glues seem to bond better than the clear jell for more permanent glue ups.

I sprayed mineral spirits on it just to get an idea what it is going to look like once oiled and lacquered.

Next up is the bigger leaf on the left. I did not originally cut this out with the other leaves because it is supposed to look like it is behind the two front leaves. I wanted to have the two front leaves shaped before laying this one out.

I thought I would take you through my process of tracing the shapes for cutting. First I need to say that I did buy the pattern from Judy Gale Roberts and it included detailed instructions on how to make Intarsia, however I am not using them. Just as there is more than one way to skin a cat, there is more than one way to make Intarsia, I prefer my methods. This does not make either one of our methods right or wrong, just different. If you are expecting to learn Judy’s way of making this pattern here, I just want to let you know that is not the case.

In order to prepare the pattern to cut the pieces you will need your average ordinary Artist Tracing Paper that can be found at just about any store that sells school supply’s, a good sharp pencil or mechanical pencil, tape (Blue Painters or Scotch Tape), scissors or Exacto knife, clear packing tape and some spray glue.

First lay the tracing paper down over your pattern and tape it down, than place the wood that has already been cut on top of it. In the above picture I traced out the left leaf by starting at the “Critical Cut” points. The critical cut point is the area of the tracing where the wood has already been cut, carefully trace those edges first. It’s important to be accurate here because the new piece you cut must line up with the cut pieces as best as possible to avoid large gaps. By carefully tracing these areas you will be transferring the exact cut to the new piece of wood. All the other cuts are not critical because you will match future pieces up to the new critical cuts. You still want to cut them carefully but they are not critical. It’s also a good idea to put a mark where the critical cut starts and ends so that you know where they are at while cutting the piece out. Before taking the pattern off make sure you trace the arrow that indicates grain direction so that when you put the pattern on the wood you know how to orientate it with the woods grain direction.

Once the pattern is traced, cut it out of the tracing paper leaving a 1/4” or so around the lines. Than lightly spray the backside of the tracing paper with glue and let dry for 30-seconds to a minute before applying it to the wood.

Sorry that’s a really bad picture! After orienting the pattern properly with the grain direction, cover it with packing tape, tape any lines you are going to cut, your blade will thank you for it. Now cut away, just remember to cut carefully.

Until Tomorrow

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