Design/Inlay Kit Booth 'Flash'

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Project by 3DWoodworkingSupply posted 02-13-2010 09:33 PM 8202 views 4 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

In preparation for another season of The Woodworking Shows, we generally have to make some new ‘flash’ pieces to display in our booth. These pieces are created as conversation starters, idea generators and something you can touch that has been made by the product being demonstrated. The images attached show some of the pieces we made or embellished with the Design/Inlay Kit from Milescraft to display in our booth at The Woodworking Shows this season.

The first couple of pictures are of a design Mark routed into a cabinet door. Even though it was a purchased door, I never would have had the confidence to carve this pattern back when we first received the products. Even so, this was one of Mark’s first projects. As it turns out, carving designs with the Design/Inlay Kit is real easy with just a little practice.
Using the included design guide makes it easy to create patterns as shown in these pictures. There are two red design templates in the kit as well as a 1/4” carbide tipped V-Groove router bit to get you started. Put the black template frame pieces together and clamp it down to your work piece.
Each design in the manual and the additional designs on Milescraft's web site has 4 aspects:

A – Which template window to use. Each template window in the red template is numbered.

B – What part of the template window to cut. Sometimes you’ll just rout the tip of a pattern, but generally you’ll rout around the whole pattern.

C – The number of spaces in the template frame you will rotate the template between cuts.

D – The Bushing size you will use to guide the bit during the cut. 17mm or 24mm are used and included.
With the template window you are using in the top ‘A’ position on the template frame, the appropriate bushing and included bit installed, follow along the inside of the template with the guide bushing as instructed. After finishing the necessary portion of the window, rotate the red template the indicated number of spaces and rout the window again.
Its like the old Spirograph. Keep routing and turning until you’ve completed the pattern. Change bushings, adjust bit depths, try different bit styles and rout concurrent designs for nearly endless possibilities.
The included pencil guide simulates the distance between the bushing and the center of your bit, so you can draw your designs first to see how they look or practice new designs.

The next picture shows a couple of inlays we put into an box we had. The inlay material is blood wood and it turned out real nice. Just the right amount of contrast.
In the kit, there are 2 red Inlay templates along with a 1/8” downspiral carbide tip router bit for clearing out pockets and cutting out inlays. You can use the template frame for inlays, or you can just clamp the red template down to your project and rout.
For inlays, its a matter of the distance from the edge of your template to the center of the bit. For this there are 2 guide bushings included, 11.11mm and 17mm. You’ll need to make 2 cuts:

1 – Clear out an inlay pocket in the project piece with the 17mm bushing installed. Cut at a depth of about a business card thicker than the inlay material used in step 2.

2 – Cut out an inlay from a thin material with the 11.11mm bushing installed. Be careful and do your painting or staining ahead of time. When you put the inlay in, it is there to stay. You’ll actually hear it ‘snap’ into place. Of course, you should probably use some glue nonetheless. Once dry, sand the inlay down to the level of the project piece for a nice smooth finish.

The third picture is a clock made almost entirely with the Design/Inlay Kit. To make the pattern holes or ‘lacework’ Mark used the downspiral bit in a pattern window set at an eight inch or so and cleared out the entire template window. Then he plunged another eight inch and cleared out the window again. Eventually, the bit passed through the project piece leaving the nice crisp cut you see.

The fourth picture is a box we made with a template we made with our Template Master. Once again, some very simple designs personalized a very nice project.

The final picture is a piece we hang on the tower showing a couple of simple designs and a bowtie inlay.

I hope this post has been helpful. While we do sell this product, it is my intent to simply provide a friendly description of how to use it. If you have any questions, ask. If you want to see more pictures, please leave some comments letting us know.

-- Mark & Elaine, Iowa,

5 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117063 posts in 3545 days

#1 posted 02-13-2010 09:42 PM

Very interesting

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Dusty56's profile


11819 posts in 3656 days

#2 posted 02-13-2010 10:32 PM

I like the cabinet door and have purchased this system but haven’t used it yet .
Thanks for posting the “how-to “

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View scrappy's profile


3506 posts in 3399 days

#3 posted 02-14-2010 06:46 AM

Fantastic work. This looks like a really nice inlay tool. Thanks for the how too along with the links.

Keep it up.


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

View norwood's profile


303 posts in 3038 days

#4 posted 02-14-2010 07:15 AM


-- of all the things Ive lost in life i miss my mind the most

View toyguy's profile


1645 posts in 3805 days

#5 posted 02-14-2010 02:22 PM

I do own one of these inlay kit generators…. but have not used it to much. Very simple to use, and do a good job. If you like routeing..then this is a must have toy.

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

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