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Routing a spiral

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Forum topic by Tokolosi posted 512 days ago 1419 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


512 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: jig tip question trick router

I have an idea that would require me to cut a perfect spiral groove (1/2-inch deep and 1/2iinch wide) into a round, flat piece with a radius of 24-inches. I have been trying to figure out if it is possible to do with a router.

I think I can do it by placing a round tube or dowel at the center of the piece, attaching it to the router with a string and it would cut a spiral as its turned around the center tube as the string winds around the stationary tube. However, considering that half the diameter of the router base is about 4-inches, and added to the thickness of the center tube (say 2-inch diameter), the spiral (if this would actually work) would not continue to the complete center of the round piece.

Has anyone ever done something like this? Or know of a better way? or have a jig for it? Any input would be appreciated.

Ps. I do not have access to a lathe.

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien


27 replies so far

View DaddyZ's profile

DaddyZ

2375 posts in 1639 days


#1 posted 512 days ago

Check out a router crafter, for saleon ebay & other places as well

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

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4088 posts in 1455 days


#2 posted 512 days ago

I did it for a Labyrinth, I used rope worked great
cant see why the way your thinking wouldnt work.

jamie

-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Tokolosi's profile

Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


#3 posted 512 days ago

Thanks for the input DaddyZ. Thats a neat looking accessory.

However it appears that it is primarily designed to allow you to use a router to carve and cut round stock. I need to cut spiral in the top of a flat board. Im not sure it can be adapted to do that. But I will research it a bit more.

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4088 posts in 1455 days


#4 posted 512 days ago

If you remove the spring from a tape measure it will be more
precise than string.
jamie

-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Tokolosi's profile

Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


#5 posted 512 days ago

Thats good to hear Jamie, that its been done before. How tight of a radius were you able to get? and what was the diameter of the center post that you used? And were you able to get all the way to the center of the piece?

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View Underdog's profile

Underdog

501 posts in 634 days


#6 posted 512 days ago

Send it to someone who can cut it on a CNC router. That’s the only way I can think of that will let you cut the spiral right to the center of the circle.

View JohnEinNJ's profile

JohnEinNJ

84 posts in 946 days


#7 posted 512 days ago

What if you move the piece, rather than the router? I can’t quite visualize this, but what if you made a spiral-shaped “fence” out of 3/8 mdf, clamped it to the table so that when you start, the bit is in the center of the workpiece, and then rolled the workpiece along the mdf. Some variation on this should work – maybe someone with really good spatial visualization skills can comment.

View Tokolosi's profile

Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


#8 posted 512 days ago

@Underdog: That may be the easiest (if not the cheapest) method. One I have already been investigating. I would love to do it myself though.

@JohneiNJ: Lol. I have a headache just trying to visualize that. But it is definitely an idea that bears further thought. Need to break out the pencil and paper I think before I blow an artery.

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View JohnEinNJ's profile

JohnEinNJ

84 posts in 946 days


#9 posted 512 days ago

Better solution: Make a spiral template and use a bushing in your router.

View Tokolosi's profile

Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


#10 posted 512 days ago

Aha! Now you are cooking with gas! That is something I had not considered at all! HHhhmm. Gonna be some tight curves on a bandsaw but might be do-able.

This is why I love this site. Some incredible talent here. Thanks to all.

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View Earlextech's profile (online now)

Earlextech

903 posts in 1289 days


#11 posted 512 days ago

The tool to do it is called a Legacy as in www.legacywoodworking.com Check it out!

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "finished"!

View Tokolosi's profile

Tokolosi

653 posts in 953 days


#12 posted 512 days ago

That would be a nice addition to have. Alas I cannot afford such a tool.

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View jaykaypur's profile

jaykaypur

3256 posts in 1006 days


#13 posted 512 days ago

Do as JohnEinNJ suggested and make a spiral formed template out of say….3/8’s inch copper tubing. That used with a bushing should be able to accomplish what you are trying to do. At least thats my 2 cents worth.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View Hammerthumb's profile

Hammerthumb

1119 posts in 573 days


#14 posted 512 days ago

Did you ever think of hand carving it?

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4088 posts in 1455 days


#15 posted 512 days ago

I left a 3” center as it was bigger and the lines were stopped.
I made a collar the same height as the center pole

-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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