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Dining table inspired by the Greene & Greene Thorsen table #10: Gluing Up and Pattern Routing the Table Halves

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Blog entry by TungOil posted 05-01-2017 01:20 AM 1846 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 9: Gluing Up the Leaves Part 10 of Dining table inspired by the Greene & Greene Thorsen table series Part 11: Pattern Routing the Segmented Table Edges »

With my four leaves glued up it is time to move to the elliptical table halves. Each half consists of seven boards and is 35” wide. With so many glue joints to align I break the glue up into two parts. First I glue up four boards,

and after that assembly is dry I add the remaining three adjacent boards to complete one half of the table top.

A little cleanup with a belt sander levels the glue joints, then I switch to the ROS with an 80 grit disk to clean up the belt sander marks and get the table halves ready for rough cutting.

I trace around the routing template to establish guidelines for the rough cuts.

Each table half is quite heavy, about 75 lbs. before trimming. The best way to rough cut the segmented border is with a circular saw and guide. It is much easier to move the tool instead of the work in this case. I flip the cores over to minimize chip out of the top veneers.

The core is now ready for pattern routing to final size.

The top is rough cut between 1/32” to 1/16” oversize.

After rough cutting each half, I clamped the routing template to the top in several places for final pattern routing. Multiple clamps hold the template in a fixed position relative to the table top and allow repositioning smaller clamps to route each facet without inadvertently moving the template.

To assure I don’t get any blow out on the end grain, I take a tapered scrap and wedge it tightly between the table top and a bar clamp before I route the end segments.

The 2” long top/bottom bearing pattern bit does a good job cleaning up the edges of the table cores without tearing out the veneers.

Next step: making the segmented border edges.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"



6 comments so far

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

5624 posts in 2957 days


#1 posted 05-01-2017 08:47 PM

I’d be a bit nervous about pattern routing that veneer, but it looks like it went smoothly for you. I understand the best bit to use is a spiral up-cut bit—it that what you used?

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

708 posts in 304 days


#2 posted 05-02-2017 01:55 AM

I wanted to use a spiral carbide bit but the biggest I have has a cutting face of 1-1/2” and my table thickness is 1-5/8”. I could not find a spiral bit anywhere that was bigger than 1-1/2” so I went with a top/bottom bearing pattern bit with a 2” cutting face. Rough cutting within 1/32” or so was helpful and I backed up the ends to prevent blow out there.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

5624 posts in 2957 days


#3 posted 05-02-2017 07:00 PM

Do you find that you get better results with the larger-diameter pattern bits?

I have a 1/2” flush-trim bit, and am wondering if I should switch to a larger-diameter bit.

Thanks!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

708 posts in 304 days


#4 posted 05-02-2017 08:03 PM

I’m not experienced enough with the different diameter bits to say definitively if diameter makes a big difference. I theory a larger diameter cutter should produce a smoother cut since the cutting path is “flatter” so to speak.

The bit I used above is the 3/4” diameter x 2” long top/bottom bearing Katana. It did the job just fine, although it already needs to be sharpened after cutting a little under 20 linear feet of Baltic Birch- the urea glue in that stuff is like steel, very hard on cutters. I just ordered a replacement so I can get a clean cut on the final pattern route for the exterior edge.

I also have a solid carbide spiral pattern bit that is 1/2” diameter- that bit produces a beautiful cut, far better than any of the straight cutters I have. I would have much preferred to use that bit or a spiral compression bit for this job, I just couldn’t find one with a long enough cutting face to do the job.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

5624 posts in 2957 days


#5 posted 05-02-2017 09:11 PM

Thanks for the info, TungOil. The larger-diameter bit makes sense to me, so I’ll add that to my ever growing shopping list…......

By the way, as I understand it, sharpening a pattern/flush trim bit will reduce the diameter of the bit below the diameter of the bearing, which can cause problems. Might be better to just replace the bit.

Anyway, thanks again!

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

708 posts in 304 days


#6 posted 05-03-2017 12:33 AM

That is true, sharpening will reduce the diameter of the bit slightly. Only a problem if you need to pattern route a part to an exact size (as I need to for my tops above and the edge parts). I have a new one on order for the rest of the parts, but I’ll still get this one sharpened for cutting less critical items like cutting boards, etc.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

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