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Best way to cut this cove?

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Forum topic by SuperCubber posted 05-17-2015 05:54 PM 873 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


05-17-2015 05:54 PM

Hi guys,

Several years ago, my wife and I bought a bedroom set for our first child. There was no nightstand available, and we didn’t really care. Now that our second daughter is ready to go from toddler bed to full-size bed, my wife wants a nightstand (yay for shop time). So, for months now, I’ve been thinking of the best way to cut this wraparound cove on the top of the nightstand. This is where I could use some help.

The two options I’ve come up with are:

1. Cut the offset beads first, and then cut the cove on the table saw. Sounds great, but the cove wraps around the corner. Assuming I built high fence for the cove cutting on the table saw, would that even be safe? Seems iffy to me.

2. Since I’m making this out of poplar (pretty soft), I’ve considered using a couple old saw blades I have around to create the exact profile and scrape it away. This still seems like an incredible amount of work and I cannot imagine it is the easiest way.

One thing to note is that on the other pieces of furniture, the cove from the front turns the corner, but right at the 90 degree point, that piece of material ends and another begins. I haven’t drawn it that way in Sketchup, because I didn’t think it was necessary, but I do plan to execute it that way. If for no other reason than to match the rest.

Thanks for any ideas you folks can provide.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine


22 replies so far

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 951 days


#1 posted 05-17-2015 06:01 PM

I’d make a box to set on the saw and cut the cove.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


#2 posted 05-17-2015 06:23 PM

Fridge, thanks for the reply. Not sure what you mean about building a box. I would have to rotate the piece as it passes over the blade to cut the cove around the corner. Is that what you mean?

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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sras

4391 posts in 2594 days


#3 posted 05-17-2015 08:38 PM

I’d cut the straight cove pieces on a table saw set up. Then I would turn the corner pieces on a lathe. Glue up a blank from 4 pieces. Put a layer of newspaper in each glue seam. You could turn a round profile and then split the turning into 4 parts by prying the turning apart at the glue seam. I would turn only the coved portion and form the round over features from flat stock.

Another idea (if you don’t have access to a lathe) would be to cut extra lengths of straight cove and create a stave jointed pieces (say 4 pieces at 22.5 degrees each). that would get you close – then hand work the rest of the way to a smooth corner piece.

I’m not sure either idea is that clearly stated.
For the lathe idea, you could create in SketchUp a round part consisting of the 4 corners put together to see what the turning would look like.
For the stave idea, make a corner piece consisting of 4 pieces. Hopefully that will help with the visualization of the idea.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

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TheFridge

5765 posts in 951 days


#4 posted 05-17-2015 08:51 PM

Box for the high fence.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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Kazooman

628 posts in 1417 days


#5 posted 05-17-2015 09:15 PM

I can see what sras is saying. I admit I hadn’t thought about that technique, probably since I do not own a lathe. I think his method would work very well.

Fridge: I have to admit I am in the same camp as the OP. Can you elaborate on what you are proposing?

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bonesbr549

1176 posts in 2532 days


#6 posted 05-17-2015 11:00 PM

You can do it with a TS or with a router bit. I prefer to use the router bit myself as I don’t like running a piece of wood diagionally on a TS but thats just me.

http://charlesneilwoodworking.3dcartstores.com/Charles-Neil-CrownOgee-Moulding-Bit_p_104.html

-- Sooner or later Liberals run out of other people's money.

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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


#7 posted 05-17-2015 11:35 PM

Steve, both great ideas! Thank you. I don’t have a lathe, but I like the stave idea. That would sure save a lot of scraping/shaping time.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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Kazooman

628 posts in 1417 days


#8 posted 05-17-2015 11:51 PM


You can do it with a TS or with a router bit. I prefer to use the router bit myself as I don t like running a piece of wood diagionally on a TS but thats just me.

http://charlesneilwoodworking.3dcartstores.com/Charles-Neil-CrownOgee-Moulding-Bit_p_104.html

I can’t view any videos associated with Charles’ posting. We are all familiar with using the table saw and an angled fence to make a cove. Tilt the blade and you get a complex cove profile, like the one shown in the original post. I’ve made several profiles like this for jewelry boxes this way.

What I don’t immediately see is how you turn the corner. This is not two coves meeting at a sharp corner. The profile of the cove continues around the corner on a smooth radius. If you have a HUGE shaper bit you could do it with a suitable curved profile on the workpiece or a template. However, with the tools that the average woodworker has at hand this is a challenge. I would be very interested to learn a new technique that allows me to wrap a tablesaw cove smoothly around a 90 degree corner. I could use that in many projects.

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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


#9 posted 05-18-2015 12:00 AM

I can t view any videos associated with Charles posting. We are all familiar with using the table saw and an angled fence to make a cove. Tilt the blade and you get a complex cove profile, like the one shown in the original post. I ve made several profiles like this for jewelry boxes this way.

What I don t immediately see is how you turn the corner. This is not two coves meeting at a sharp corner. The profile of the cove continues around the corner on a smooth radius. If you have a HUGE shaper bit you could do it with a suitable curved profile on the workpiece or a template. However, with the tools that the average woodworker has at hand this is a challenge. I would be very interested to learn a new technique that allows me to wrap a tablesaw cove smoothly around a 90 degree corner. I could use that in many projects.

- Kazooman

Kazooman, the reason I asked this question was to find out specifically about turning the corner on the table saw. I believe it would work (though it may take a few passes), but I’m just not sure it’s safe, as I would be rotating the piece over the blade. The piece would be supported by a tall fence on either side.

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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sras

4391 posts in 2594 days


#10 posted 05-18-2015 12:11 AM

You’re welcome! If it were me, I would spend some time with CAD to make sure I understood how to cut the staves.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

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Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1195 days


#11 posted 05-18-2015 02:38 AM

Pardon my ignorance, but why is there a need for a tall fence when the cove being made on a table saw doesn’t require more than a half inch of blade height on a 10” saw?............ Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


#12 posted 05-18-2015 02:46 AM

Jerry, the reason I plan on using a tall fence is because I’ll have to rotate the piece as it’s passing over the blade. While rotating the piece, very little material will be supported by the table. The tall fence would support the material on either side.

Does that make any more sense?

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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bigblockyeti

3668 posts in 1185 days


#13 posted 05-18-2015 02:52 AM

I would use the tablesaw method, but I can see from the picture if the bead detail below the cove is proud of surface of the cove or if the tangent of the two radii would just touch. If it’s proud, I’d figure out how to add it after cutting on the tablesaw. If it’s below where the blade would pass, a beading bit could be used after.

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SuperCubber

870 posts in 1749 days


#14 posted 05-18-2015 03:00 AM

It is proud, and I will probably add the bead as an additional piece after I cut the cove. I agree that that will be an easier solution. Thanks for your input!

-- Joe | Spartanburg, SC | "To give anything less than your best is to sacrafice the gift." - Steve Prefontaine

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bigblockyeti

3668 posts in 1185 days


#15 posted 05-18-2015 03:04 AM

Forgot to mention, the corner radii on the left and right I would probably turn also as previously mentioned.

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