how to cut thin stock w/out destroying it

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Forum topic by Dave Witkus posted 07-11-2012 09:04 PM 4033 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Dave Witkus

29 posts in 2342 days

07-11-2012 09:04 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

Hi All…....

I want to cut diamond shapes from thin stock I cut, about an 1/8” thick but have been having problems.

The diamonds are to be used as inlay. Most of you know that if you fit 3 diamond shape pieces together like a jigsaw puzzle you make a 3 dimensional cube. The more diamond shapes you add, the larger the 3 dimensional grows.

I have a pattern that I use to draw the diamond shapes on the wood and have used table saw, chop saw, and band saw. Table saw and chop saw are much too powerful and splinter the wood. Band saw is better. It still will not make a clean cut in 1/8 thick wood so I used the band saw to cut close to the lines then ground down to the lines with a belt sander. Still the edges are not crisp and clean.

I have used a box cutter, razor knife and actually that works the best but is tricky and I prefer a better way.

Any suggestions on how to cut crisp, straight lines in thin wood? At this point I will consider buying thin diamond shape pieces for inlay. Any idea who sells these types of products.

Thank you,


-- After you wipe away all the hype, who you really are is synonymous w how you treat people.

10 replies so far

View cabmaker's profile


1740 posts in 3006 days

#1 posted 07-11-2012 09:11 PM

bandsaw with propriertary sled works well for that sort of deal. And proper blade ofcoarse.

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3845 days

#2 posted 07-11-2012 09:28 PM

Veneer saw.

Or a router jig.

View DaddyZ's profile


2475 posts in 3237 days

#3 posted 07-11-2012 09:30 PM

I don’t know if it will work, but i have thought about using a paper cutter.

Another idea cut 1 Diamond shaped log then cut the Thin strips off of it

-- Pat - Worker of Wood, Collector of Tools, Father of one

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3195 days

#4 posted 07-11-2012 10:05 PM

Cutting gauge. It is like a mortise gauge but with blade like you use for marking joinery

If you have a #45, they have a slitting blade as well (fits on the back of the skate)

Panel gauge.

Rotary cutter. With a big wheel on a self healing mat. Get them at sewing stores.

Mat cutter. Get them at art supply places.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View Dave Witkus's profile

Dave Witkus

29 posts in 2342 days

#5 posted 07-11-2012 10:07 PM

I’m on my way to Woodcraft to get me a veneer saw…that seems to be the most logical. Most of the research I did after getting this suggestion showed guys using one to slice ultra thin veneer like 1/40 of an inch an my veneer is at least a 1/16 or thicker, but being careful and making a lot of light cuts, this tool should work.

Making a log the exact shape I need and cutting off slices as I need is absolutely an interesting idea and will be looked into, but I’ll try a veneer saw first.

Thank you all


-- After you wipe away all the hype, who you really are is synonymous w how you treat people.

View jmos's profile


902 posts in 2566 days

#6 posted 07-11-2012 10:57 PM

Dave – just read up on how to sharpen the veneer saw; it won’t be ready to use out of the package. My next project has some veneering in it and I came across that tid-bit in a couple of places. Doesn’t seem too hard to do.

-- John

View oldnovice's profile


7316 posts in 3565 days

#7 posted 07-11-2012 11:46 PM

If I had to make these pieces I would make template and use a router.

If you have guide bushings for your router, size the template accordingly.

Using a small amount of double sided masking tape or carpet tape (use less carpet tape as it holds more than the dbl side MT) to hold the stock. The tape should be positioned so that when the triangle has been cut out that the triangle is held in place.

Place the template over the stock and clamp it down.
Use a small router bit, 1/8” or smaller, and sharp. Use a low speed.

Paying attention to the grain of the stock so that when get the ending cut meets the starting cut that it is along one of the edges and not at the vertex of the triangles.

Move the template and cut out the next triangle.

I have used this process with model aircraft plywood 1/16” thick, 1/8” plexiglass, and 1/4” red oak (not triangles, but rectangles).

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View IrreverentJack's profile


727 posts in 3040 days

#8 posted 07-12-2012 12:11 AM

These are handy. X-Acto Razor Saw -Jack

View Alexandre's profile


1417 posts in 2388 days

#9 posted 07-12-2012 12:15 AM

Get a nice sharp blade, and a piece of mdf for scrap.
Use the piece of mdf as a zero clearance and support

-- My terrible signature...

View Ted's profile


2873 posts in 2408 days

#10 posted 07-12-2012 09:00 AM

I use a small Japanese style saw, about 10” blade, fine tooth, for cutting stuff like this. But I think the veneer saw will probably work just as well if not better.

-- You can collect dust or you can make dust. I choose to make it.

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