An Idea For Scroll Sawing

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Blog entry by stefang posted 11-02-2009 09:06 PM 1485 reads 0 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Awhile back I had to do some scroll sawing with the table tilted. I found it difficult to hold the workpiece and move it around on the tilt, so I started trying to figure a way where I could keep the table flat and still saw at an angle. That required that I would have to be able to tilt the whole saw.

I also wanted a scrollsaw table that was easily adjustable in height. This feature was important because my grandkids use the scrollsaw too, and they are still a lot shorter than me. I don’t have a lot of room in my shop, so I couldn’t use a dedicated table for this, and all my bench heights are quite high.

The idea I came up with was to use my drillpress. I mounted my scrollsaw to a piece of 3/4” thick plywood. I placed two cleats on the bottom of the plywood. The cleats just fit over the drillpress table and help to keep it on the table before clamping.

Here is how it works: I set the tilt angle on the scrollsaw table. Mine only tilts up on the right side. I then tilt the drillpress table to the same angle, but in the opposite direction (left up in my case). Next I mount the scrollsaw onto the drillpress table. The left hand cleat holds it in place while I clamp it down. The result is a level scrollsaw table which can be adjusted to whatever height you want (within reason). Of course you can also use the scrollsaw without the tilt and still use the height adjustment feature. The reason I used two cleats on the scrollsaw mount board is so that it can sit level on any level surface when detached from the drillpress.

I have been using this set-up for some time now, and I really like it. I hope you do too. The only disadvantage is that it requires a floor model drillpress, so I hope you have one. Here’s a photo of my set-up. I’m sorry I couldn’t get more into the photo, but my drillpress sits in tight space. I have my drillpress mounted on wheels so I can swing to a good position when scroll sawing.


-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

17 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4161 days

#1 posted 11-02-2009 09:23 PM

where there’s a will, there’s a way. Very creative thinking.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View degoose's profile


7233 posts in 3355 days

#2 posted 11-02-2009 10:09 PM

First David and now you Mike.. looking outside the box to use tools in a different way successfully.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3334 days

#3 posted 11-02-2009 10:17 PM

Thanks for the nice comment Debbie. Hey Larry, I am forced to use the tools I have, because there isn’t any more room in my shop! If I had the space and the money, I sure would like to have one of your wee beasties.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View a1Jim's profile


117094 posts in 3577 days

#4 posted 11-02-2009 10:46 PM

Slick Idea Mike thanks

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1567 posts in 3565 days

#5 posted 11-02-2009 10:51 PM

Good one Mike, I would not have thought of that. I think this can come in handy, Thanks.

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View toyguy's profile


1652 posts in 3837 days

#6 posted 11-02-2009 11:05 PM

Mission acomplished….. That’s the way to think outside of the box.

” A tip of the Hat to you sir”

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

View nmkidd's profile


758 posts in 3173 days

#7 posted 11-03-2009 01:21 AM

Great idea Mike. In terms of Twinkies… many Twinkies and coffees did it take to conjure this one up?
I’d still be chomping away!

-- Doug, New Mexico.......the only stupid question is one that is never asked!........don't fix it, if it ain't broke!

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18271 posts in 3676 days

#8 posted 11-03-2009 02:23 AM

Great idea Mike!! Glad to see you haven’t lost your Yankee ingenuity in Norway :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4175 posts in 3164 days

#9 posted 11-03-2009 04:37 AM

Gad Zooks Mike…...that is clever. No I don’t have a floor mounted drill press, but that idea will stick in my brain.

That is straight out of the blue….............

-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

View littlecope's profile


3071 posts in 3502 days

#10 posted 11-03-2009 11:10 AM

That’s a wild idea, Mike! I do as few angled cuts with the scroll saw as possible, because of their difficulty. It’s a situation where my intuition blatantly lies to me! Feeding the wood the way my mind and eyes are telling me to doesn’t work on a tilted table… That set-up looks like it eliminates the problem! Smart Thinking!!

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3334 days

#11 posted 11-03-2009 01:46 PM

Thanks for all the flattering comments. I will show them to my wife to prove to her that I’m smarter than she thinks (or knows?)

My inspiration was not ingenuity or even twinkies, it was sheer desperation plus you have a lot of time on your hands when you are retired to think up little solutions to little problems. I’m still working on how to keep my wife happy and still spend a lot of time in the shop! Any suggestions?

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View patron's profile


13604 posts in 3341 days

#12 posted 11-03-2009 02:06 PM

good idea , mike .

i don’t have a floor drill either ,
but your idea opens new possibilities .

you could always pay her to be your apprentice ? (LOL)

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

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4175 posts in 3164 days

#13 posted 11-03-2009 04:38 PM

Keep your wife happy while spending a lot of time in the shop…......let’s see:

You could invite her to clean your shop while you are working in it, just for togetherness…......
You could have her budget your hobby costs, perhaps at a computer center you built, just for her…....
You could make new broom and mop handles that are real fancy, justifying your shop time…......
You could install an intercom that broadcasts all the shop noises throughout the house, so she would feel part of the action….......
You could install a vent into the house, so that she could share in the beautiful aromas and ambience of wood dust, saw smoke, paint fumes, and the soft romantic haze of sawdust in the air…......

Think that might help?

-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

View stefang's profile


15881 posts in 3334 days

#14 posted 11-03-2009 09:31 PM

Thanks for the suggestions guys, but I think I will have stick to house chores for the time being. I did get into the shop for few hours today. I am currently working on a little project and I had planned to finish it today, but everything I did was wrong. In 3-1/2 hours I managed to mess everything up that I did. If I were doing this for pay I’m sure I would have been fired. Guess I’ll have to give it another go tomorrow.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4175 posts in 3164 days

#15 posted 11-03-2009 10:50 PM

Working hard this week, so not much time for the shop. Did get in about 30 minutes this morning. The switch is coming along nicely, and I haven’t screwed it up yet…yet….......yet….............yet….....

-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

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