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Router Sled for curved stool tops #1: Carriage and Rails, Start to Finish

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Blog entry by anthm27 posted 05-22-2019 08:45 AM 1146 reads 0 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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I,m making some stools and a small table to sit around playing Sungka and the like.
I want the stools to be special and have started laminating some maple and walnut.

So as to be able to get the curve in the seat tops I built this router sled type jig.

Built mainly out of an IKEA tallboy top that i found on the village rubbish pile.

1) I firstly made a carriage to hold the router in place, basically a huge extension of the router plate.

2) Then got about getting my curves for the rails correct, I used a lath and some small nails.

3) For the 1st rail after the curve was drawn I used a Jigsaw (and would you believe) a spoke-shave and some sanding . Then simply a flush trim bit to get the 2nd rail identical. Screwed it all together and was almost ready.

4) Piece of sacrificial pine and away I went. It turned out OK but needs some small tweaking. Namely, Dowel stops so the carriage stays on the rails within the cutting limits and rounding over of all carriage and rail edges for smooth running.

Reasonably happy with the outcome, thanks for reading , please see attached pics from start to finish.

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.



16 comments so far

View crowie's profile

crowie

3721 posts in 2727 days


#1 posted 05-22-2019 09:55 AM

Clever innovative use of router skiies Tony.

-- Lifes good, Enjoy each new day...... Cheers from "On Top DownUnder" Crowie

View recycle1943's profile

recycle1943

4498 posts in 2398 days


#2 posted 05-22-2019 10:45 AM

pretty clever use of would be scrap

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

7525 posts in 4129 days


#3 posted 05-22-2019 11:03 AM

Well blow me down!
Great minds think alike! How can I not like this idea Anthony it’s a perfect way to make the “swoop” on the stool top. I too made some stools about 7 years ago and wanted to the seat top’s saddle style. So I came up with this jig. It’snot a nice looking as your but it work perfectly!
Nice work Anthony! The stools do look much better with the saddle seat! https://www.lumberjocks.com/projects/69741

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View robscastle's profile

robscastle

7199 posts in 2980 days


#4 posted 05-22-2019 11:09 AM

Good work certainly looks the goods.

The production of Jigs can be very expensive no doubt you already know
Dowel stops are a good move you may wish to consider doing do a set for other applications. when you set up.
To run smoothly you may also want to consider waxing the rails or spray with silicone to slick frame contacts.

From the results it obviously works well.

-- Regards Rob

View doubleDD's profile

doubleDD

9476 posts in 2819 days


#5 posted 05-22-2019 12:43 PM

Well done on the jig Anthony. It should be a success on making all the stools. Can’t wait to see the finished product.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View pottz's profile

pottz

9902 posts in 1760 days


#6 posted 05-22-2019 07:37 PM

great jig, problem solved.nice work cant wait to see those stools buddy.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View anthm27's profile

anthm27

1721 posts in 1886 days


#7 posted 05-22-2019 09:54 PM

Thanks for all the comments above,
Cheers to Crowie, Dick, Tony , Rob, Double Dave and Pottz.
Tony I had a look at your sled , It looks great and was wondering if you still have it stored somewhere, I see your carriage rails are longer than mine and if the truth be known I am going to scrap my carriage rails and do them again longer and stronger.
Thanks Rob yes I will get it going with the waxed rails, and yes time consuming these jigs, basically best part of a days work yesterday.

I was kind of wondering what is the best router bit to use, yesterday I used a bottom cleaning type bit but it was an inch in diameter, I,m thinking a smaller diameter bit may be better. Any ideas?

Thanks again
Regards
Anthony

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

7525 posts in 4129 days


#8 posted 05-22-2019 10:27 PM

Anthony,

Yes I still have my rough draft of a sled stored away. I figured that someday I may need it again. I used this bit when I did my saddle seat tops. It did the job ok and I had this bit already so I just went with it.


.

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View anthm27's profile

anthm27

1721 posts in 1886 days


#9 posted 05-23-2019 12:16 AM



Anthony,

- woodshaver Tony C

Very similar to the bit I used yesterday, It did however leave some lines that easily sanded out, I have a bowl cutter bit with rounded corners that has a shot bearing, I think that,ll work good.
Anyways , I,ll move forward today with the stool superstructures. Its nice to have a few days off.
Regards
Anth

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

View Grumpy's profile

Grumpy

26427 posts in 4627 days


#10 posted 05-23-2019 01:32 AM

Great blog on your method Anthony, well done.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View anthm27's profile

anthm27

1721 posts in 1886 days


#11 posted 05-23-2019 01:36 AM



Great blog on your method Anthony, well done.

- Grumpy

Cheers Tony, I thought I might have got a comment on using the word Lath, but no hits yet.
Have a good day.
Anth

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

View mikeacg's profile

mikeacg

1535 posts in 1833 days


#12 posted 07-11-2019 10:43 AM

Anthony,
Have seen sleds like this before but always wondered how hard it was to keep it straight as you were using it. Does it skew at all while sliding it or do you have a method to keep it tracking straight (like the cables on a drafting table)?

-- Mike, A Yooper with a drawl, http://www.artcentergraphics.com

View anthm27's profile

anthm27

1721 posts in 1886 days


#13 posted 07-11-2019 10:59 AM


Anthony,
Have seen sleds like this before but always wondered how hard it was to keep it straight as you were using it. Does it skew at all while sliding it or do you have a method to keep it tracking straight (like the cables on a drafting table)?

- mikeacg

The main frame (rails) I screwed down so there was no chance of it moving.I also screwed the work piece down so no chance of it moving.
So with screwed sled rail and work piece the carriage was the only movable bit. I waxed the edges of both carriage and rails and took my time with the router.
It worked well. Not perfect like a CNC machine but well and truly good enough for a good sanding to get it almost spot on.
The problem was , it was an awful lot of work for two stools.
Thanks for reading though.
Regards
Anth

EDIT, Lovie did take a video when I was routeing, Looking back at the video I was surprised how stable and well it all worked.

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

View mikeacg's profile

mikeacg

1535 posts in 1833 days


#14 posted 07-11-2019 11:08 AM

Anthony,
Thanks for the quick response. I have only ever used a sled for flattening wood so was unsure with a curved frame…

-- Mike, A Yooper with a drawl, http://www.artcentergraphics.com

View anthm27's profile

anthm27

1721 posts in 1886 days


#15 posted 07-11-2019 11:15 AM


Anthony,
Thanks for the quick response. I have only ever used a sled for flattening wood so was unsure with a curved frame…

- mikeacg

Your welcome Mike, Without a thicknesser I kind of need to use a router to flatten stuff also, I get lazy though and have been using a belt sander. Not ideal.

EDIT: just quietly I was thrilled with the outcome of the curved stool tops.

-- There is no hope for any of us if we keep apologizing for telling the truth.

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