|Project by Jerome||posted 08-06-2013 04:14 PM||2555 views||1 time favorited||11 comments|
This is my first attempt at making a jig to split wooden balls in half. In the past I used a clamp and held the wooden ball at the base of my Miter saw and lowered the blade to cut the ball. Every time the split pieces would be launched all over the shop and I would then collect the ones that were cut clean. Out of 100 balls, I would get roughly 75 “passable” halves.
With my new band saw and some advice from a few here on LJ, I created a jig to safely cut the small balls in half. The jig was crafted from a pine 2×4 cut in half. I also used a small block at the end to allow for even clamping. I used my neighbor’s drill press to cut the holes out using a forstner bit. It worked ok about half of the way. Because I did not use any hot glue to secure the edge of the ball, some were destroyed by the band saw blade while others were shredded and looked like a cheese puff. Additionally, the balls that caught in the saw blade spun and removed some of the wood from the side of the jig. The other issue was that the holes were created too close together to allow the band saw to cut through one ball without touching the other.
I will make a new one made out of a harder wood, maybe purpleheart. And allow for enough room for the saw to pass through one ball without touching the other. I will also make the next one shorter to allow for five balls instead of 12. The flaw with this design though is that when one of the balls is split in half, the clamps loosen a bit.
-- Jerome, Marietta, GA