Shop jigs #4: Cutting out the wheel blanks.

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by htl posted 11-08-2018 11:16 PM 2563 reads 1 time favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Wheel making jig Setting it up Part 4 of Shop jigs series Part 5: Wheel Making Part One Rim Making Jig for my Wheels. »

There’s a hundred ways to cut out the blanks for the wheels but here’s my method.

It is best to use oak, walnut, and maple is out standing, you need a strong grain so it doesn’t chip.
Cutting the treads a little deeper than you need will give you space to sand out any chips, make the wheels a little bigger than needed for this reason also.

My wheels need to be 2 1/2” so I ripped down some lumber a little wider than needed.

Then at the table saw cut them to thickness, I do it in two step as I don’t like ripping it at full with.
Then over to the plainer to clean it up.

Now draw a line down the center and with a Pencil Compass draw out the wheels a little big, then over to the drill press and drill out the centers.

Then over to the band saw to cut them out but again no need to get it close as the drum sander jig will clean up the edges and get them just right.

Then a light sanding and off to the tread making jig.
I needed 12 straight cut tread and could do them all at one time a real time saver.

The wheels as you can see need some sanding then they’ll be ready to glue up, then sand sand sand.

When I glue the treads up I use a 1/4” dowel to keep the centers inline and just glue up one part at a time so all stays lined up.
That’s tomorrows job so no pictures sorry.

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

11 comments so far

View ralbuck's profile


6541 posts in 3039 days

#1 posted 11-08-2018 11:28 PM

Very nicely done.

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View hookfoot's profile


380 posts in 2721 days

#2 posted 11-09-2018 12:29 AM

I love your sand, sand, sand comment. I always tell everyone that when you think you are done sanding, get another piece of sandpaper and it one more time.

View crowie's profile


3715 posts in 2723 days

#3 posted 11-09-2018 07:34 AM

Top effort Bruce

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

View Orvile Baker's profile

Orvile Baker

263 posts in 1450 days

#4 posted 11-09-2018 04:05 PM

Cool thanks I needed the help.

-- Bud Baker , Ojibwa, WI.

View stefang's profile


17039 posts in 4107 days

#5 posted 11-09-2018 04:10 PM

Looks well organized and efficient with a great result.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View htl's profile


5125 posts in 1932 days

#6 posted 11-09-2018 10:54 PM

Bud I was thinking of you when I made the blog.
I had been wanting to write this but once you get fired up building some times it’s hard to stop and take the right pictures so it all make sense.
I’ve made a lot a miss steps before I finally found what works FOR ME, but different tools means finding another way.
My Shop Smith really helps with the drum sanding.
I know some of my extra thoughts may not be where they should when put in the blog but just add them as they hit me.
As with all things like this howto, it needs to be read more than once for it all to fall in place.

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

View Jason1974's profile


251 posts in 1095 days

#7 posted 11-10-2018 04:15 PM

Bruce, what is the thickness of your blanks? Gonna try making some tires your way. I like how your tires look.

-- Jason, Camden, NC -- I didn't do it, Stupid Did!

View Orvile Baker's profile

Orvile Baker

263 posts in 1450 days

#8 posted 11-10-2018 05:02 PM

Thanks htl. I “see” nothing wrong with your blogs and they help my wake up my lazy brain. Like I said before , a lot of my problems are because of my sight being so bad that it is hard to see a lot of detail in some plans and cutting.I am lucky that I have a very caring wife of 40 years that will help with what she can. I also try to help others with disabilities and they can help me with some of the things that I can’t see well. I hope to do my first building blog on a jig for rounding wheels on the sanders. My jig looks like yours , but I have mine so that you can clamp it to the sander one time, then turn a crank to adjust the wheel size. By using another blank, you can make the wheels the all the same size . I mope to get pictures soon so I can try my first blog.

-- Bud Baker , Ojibwa, WI.

View htl's profile


5125 posts in 1932 days

#9 posted 11-10-2018 05:45 PM

Jason a lot depends on what thickness you need the tires to be.
A thin center looks good 1/8” or a tad more.
The out side needs to be thicker so you can round them and shape them some. 3/8”
Angle treads 3/16”

Do them in different thicknesses really Makes you have to pay attention so as I have no attention span I usually end up with 3/16 for the inner treads and wider for the out sides.
In other word what ever they turn out to be when cutting is what they are when done, just a seat of the pants method.

I made these last wheels out I think is Ash and man did I have fits getting and angled treads to work out’ just the wood on hand but man what a pain.
Use maple if you can, that’s what the wood wheel maker company’s use for a reason, but I’ve made nice wheels with oak, walnut, mahogany,.
I should add the straight cut treads worked ok it’s the angled treads that really need the better woods.

Bud my jig is adjustable too just not shown very well in these pictures.
Here's my blog on it.

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

View htl's profile


5125 posts in 1932 days

#10 posted 11-10-2018 06:06 PM

Jason did you mean tires or rims in your last post as you said something about rims?
I have blogs on making rims some where. lol

I’m always changing the way I do things but here’s how I do the centers now.
I buy small wheels from Hobby Lobby as their maple, so hold together really well, plus they already have a nice shape to them so saves me some work and adds just that little extra..

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

View htl's profile


5125 posts in 1932 days

#11 posted 12-29-2018 08:05 PM

I’m no Pro as I build just for me.
I’ve been trying to come up with a nice tire that doesn’t take weeks to build, and over a 3 year time span this is where I’m at now.
If you check out my blogs from day one you can see my progress, with Dutchy’s help and a ton a searches I have combined a ton a different styles to be able to build a fast, and safe tire and rim.

I like to work fast so to be safe I came up with this jig for making tire treads, many at a time with an indexer to keep everything matched up and just put in the parts and the jig does the work and my hands stay out of the way.
And like Bud Baker my eyes arn’t what they used to be and my attention span is nil so the indexer and stop blocks on the jig keeps me safe.
There’s always a better way but this is what works for me at this time.

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

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