Curved Doors; Raised panel & Six light glass #2: Getting started

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Les Hastings posted 07-25-2008 03:10 AM 17496 reads 8 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Finished product Part 2 of Curved Doors; Raised panel & Six light glass series Part 3: Rails »

I’ll be covering the construction of two different kinds of curved doors. A pair of raised panel doors with one inch thick styles and rails and a 3/4 thick panel. With an outside radius of 20” and an inside radius of 19”. The second is a single six divided light glass door. Its style and rails are also 1” thick, its outside radius is 12 1/4” and the inside 11 1/4”.

Lets start with making the jigs to mill the radius styles for each set of doors. The starting lumber size for the styles will be 1 1/4” thick x 3 1/2” wide. I always make them at least 4” longer than what the finished length will be. The starting thickness and width is also over sized. The doors I’m making are out of poplar.

Lets start with what I will call the sled. It consists of one piece 3/4 mdf or fibercore sheet stock. It is 3 1/2” wide and about 36” to 48” in length. It has two side rails from hardwood about a foot shorter than the mdf base. They are 3/4” thick x 2”wide. They are attached to the mdf sides to creat a sled for the styles to slide through. The drawings below has a small sketch in the corner of the sled. The main drawings are of the the inside and outside radius jigs that I will call the cradles.

If you double click in the drawing you can see the whole thing.

door jig inside
door jig outside

The cradle radius is either 3/4” or 1” smaller or larger than the finished radius of the door its self. I usually make mine 1” different. I use a 1/2” solid carbide down spiral bit that is 4” long to mill my parts. I make a wood base for the router about 5 1/2” square with it will need side rails attached to both sides that are about 1”wide. The cradle rails will go inside of the outer rails. This will keep the router on track if you wiil on the cradles while milling.

The inside radius needs to be milled first. They need to be routed right to the edge of the 3 1/2” width of your materail or you can leave a small 1/8” flat on each side. Just make sure you leave the materail thickness at 1 1/4” thick overall. This will give an edge to ride on when routing the outside radius and the cradles can still help hold the materail down.

The picture below is to show how I use the drawing to check my parts when milling. But its actually a pic of one of the rasied panel sections. The panels sections and the styles and rails are milled the same way.

After I mill the inside radius I go ahead and sand and clean it up before I mill the outside. I usually mill the them a 1/32” thick to allow for sanding and clean up to a final thickness of 1”. Please note that the panel parts are not sanded until after the panel is glued up, more on that later.

Here’s a pile of milled radius parts.


Well I’m sure I’ve left some things out that you need to know so I will check this over when I’m not quite so tired. Then I’ll add it in later. If you have any questions please ask I’ll do my best to answer them. Sorry it took so long to get to part two. I took an evening off to finally get this started.

Thanks for looking, see you next time.

-- Les, Wichita, Ks. (I'd rather be covered in saw dust!)

5 comments so far

View trifern's profile


8135 posts in 4335 days

#1 posted 07-25-2008 03:54 AM

Very informative. Thank you for sharing.

-- My favorite piece is my last one, my best piece is my next one.

View Betsy's profile


3392 posts in 4463 days

#2 posted 07-25-2008 04:42 AM

That is slick. Thanks for showing this – it takes a lot of time and effort to explain something this intricate in such detail. Looking forward to the next installment.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3449 posts in 4280 days

#3 posted 07-25-2008 05:39 AM


You are brilliant! This is SO helpful, but I’m rather slow at catching on sometimes. You said, “The panel sections and the stiles and rails are milled the same way.” I understand the panel and stile milling, but I don’t quite get how the rail is “milled the same way.” Can you explain how you do a horizontal piece with this sled?

Thanks for being willing to share so much expertise with a comparative novice.

-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View Tom Adamski's profile

Tom Adamski

306 posts in 4338 days

#4 posted 07-25-2008 07:25 PM

Les, Nice job… I’ll look forward to see more.

It looks similer to my jig… Take a look CLICK HERE


-- Anybody can become a woodworker, but only a Craftsman can hide his mistakes.

View jeanmarc's profile


1899 posts in 4284 days

#5 posted 07-29-2008 07:41 PM

Nice job.always a pleasure of making a turn on your .de page beautiful thing are made there .et gives me ideas thereafter.

-- jeanmarc manosque france

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics