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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sketches and planning

I am working on a project commission that involves some new things I am trying, so thought others might enjoy the journey. The customer wanted a small cross to go in a pastor's study, but wanted something somewhat contemporary/artistic.

First step was to submit several ideas in rough sketch form.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768189 !

Second step was to refine a drawing based on the one the client preferred.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768609
It comes in handy being a graphic designer. I then took this sketch and converted it into an Adobe Illustrator file that will allow me to print multiple templates as needed and be confident they are identical. Probably this could also be done in Sketchup, but I don't know it as well yet, so went with what I know.

https://flic.kr/p/5200364524
Next installment I will start detailing the actual construction.
 

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Sketches and planning

I am working on a project commission that involves some new things I am trying, so thought others might enjoy the journey. The customer wanted a small cross to go in a pastor's study, but wanted something somewhat contemporary/artistic.

First step was to submit several ideas in rough sketch form.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768189 !

Second step was to refine a drawing based on the one the client preferred.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768609
It comes in handy being a graphic designer. I then took this sketch and converted it into an Adobe Illustrator file that will allow me to print multiple templates as needed and be confident they are identical. Probably this could also be done in Sketchup, but I don't know it as well yet, so went with what I know.

https://flic.kr/p/5200364524
Next installment I will start detailing the actual construction.
I like it! I'm waiting for the real thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sketches and planning

I am working on a project commission that involves some new things I am trying, so thought others might enjoy the journey. The customer wanted a small cross to go in a pastor's study, but wanted something somewhat contemporary/artistic.

First step was to submit several ideas in rough sketch form.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768189 !

Second step was to refine a drawing based on the one the client preferred.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768609
It comes in handy being a graphic designer. I then took this sketch and converted it into an Adobe Illustrator file that will allow me to print multiple templates as needed and be confident they are identical. Probably this could also be done in Sketchup, but I don't know it as well yet, so went with what I know.

https://flic.kr/p/5200364524
Next installment I will start detailing the actual construction.
Thanks Doug! Hope to post another installment soon.
 

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Sketches and planning

I am working on a project commission that involves some new things I am trying, so thought others might enjoy the journey. The customer wanted a small cross to go in a pastor's study, but wanted something somewhat contemporary/artistic.

First step was to submit several ideas in rough sketch form.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768189 !

Second step was to refine a drawing based on the one the client preferred.

https://flic.kr/p/5199768609
It comes in handy being a graphic designer. I then took this sketch and converted it into an Adobe Illustrator file that will allow me to print multiple templates as needed and be confident they are identical. Probably this could also be done in Sketchup, but I don't know it as well yet, so went with what I know.

https://flic.kr/p/5200364524
Next installment I will start detailing the actual construction.
I'm hanging out too…
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Beginning construction

I made a very rough prototype next out of some scrap pine. I won't explain the steps here, just thought the prototype would help you visualize what is happening. I wanted to resolve these steps without wasting a bunch of good wood. The inner color I just colored a bit with a marker to help see what the cherry might look like it as it was all pine.

https://flic.kr/p/5202583407
The next step I took is to mill out two contrasting woods to roughly equal size and thickness. In this case I chose ash and cherry as I like the value and color contrast and they are both nice woods to work with.

https://flic.kr/p/5199769925
I next took my trusty glue gun and fastened the two pieces together. I didn't use a lot of glue as I wanted to separate the pieces later. This was just a temporary hold. Another option would have been to glue them together with paper between them like some woodturners do.

https://flic.kr/p/5199771123
Now I took the pattern you saw earlier and cut out the two pieces and spray mounted them into position on the two layer block of wood.

https://flic.kr/p/5200366266
In the next post we will start sawing out the pieces on the bandsaw. By temporarily fastening the two boards together I will saw out two identical pieces that I can mix and match when I reglue to get the desired pattern.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are enjoying it!
 

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Beginning construction

I made a very rough prototype next out of some scrap pine. I won't explain the steps here, just thought the prototype would help you visualize what is happening. I wanted to resolve these steps without wasting a bunch of good wood. The inner color I just colored a bit with a marker to help see what the cherry might look like it as it was all pine.

https://flic.kr/p/5202583407
The next step I took is to mill out two contrasting woods to roughly equal size and thickness. In this case I chose ash and cherry as I like the value and color contrast and they are both nice woods to work with.

https://flic.kr/p/5199769925
I next took my trusty glue gun and fastened the two pieces together. I didn't use a lot of glue as I wanted to separate the pieces later. This was just a temporary hold. Another option would have been to glue them together with paper between them like some woodturners do.

https://flic.kr/p/5199771123
Now I took the pattern you saw earlier and cut out the two pieces and spray mounted them into position on the two layer block of wood.

https://flic.kr/p/5200366266
In the next post we will start sawing out the pieces on the bandsaw. By temporarily fastening the two boards together I will saw out two identical pieces that I can mix and match when I reglue to get the desired pattern.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are enjoying it!
cool design - looks like it'll be a good lookin cross
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Beginning construction

I made a very rough prototype next out of some scrap pine. I won't explain the steps here, just thought the prototype would help you visualize what is happening. I wanted to resolve these steps without wasting a bunch of good wood. The inner color I just colored a bit with a marker to help see what the cherry might look like it as it was all pine.

https://flic.kr/p/5202583407
The next step I took is to mill out two contrasting woods to roughly equal size and thickness. In this case I chose ash and cherry as I like the value and color contrast and they are both nice woods to work with.

https://flic.kr/p/5199769925
I next took my trusty glue gun and fastened the two pieces together. I didn't use a lot of glue as I wanted to separate the pieces later. This was just a temporary hold. Another option would have been to glue them together with paper between them like some woodturners do.

https://flic.kr/p/5199771123
Now I took the pattern you saw earlier and cut out the two pieces and spray mounted them into position on the two layer block of wood.

https://flic.kr/p/5200366266
In the next post we will start sawing out the pieces on the bandsaw. By temporarily fastening the two boards together I will saw out two identical pieces that I can mix and match when I reglue to get the desired pattern.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are enjoying it!
Thanks Dakremer. Hope you are having a great day.
 

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Beginning construction

I made a very rough prototype next out of some scrap pine. I won't explain the steps here, just thought the prototype would help you visualize what is happening. I wanted to resolve these steps without wasting a bunch of good wood. The inner color I just colored a bit with a marker to help see what the cherry might look like it as it was all pine.

https://flic.kr/p/5202583407
The next step I took is to mill out two contrasting woods to roughly equal size and thickness. In this case I chose ash and cherry as I like the value and color contrast and they are both nice woods to work with.

https://flic.kr/p/5199769925
I next took my trusty glue gun and fastened the two pieces together. I didn't use a lot of glue as I wanted to separate the pieces later. This was just a temporary hold. Another option would have been to glue them together with paper between them like some woodturners do.

https://flic.kr/p/5199771123
Now I took the pattern you saw earlier and cut out the two pieces and spray mounted them into position on the two layer block of wood.

https://flic.kr/p/5200366266
In the next post we will start sawing out the pieces on the bandsaw. By temporarily fastening the two boards together I will saw out two identical pieces that I can mix and match when I reglue to get the desired pattern.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are enjoying it!
Kevin, I make a lot of crosses, but yours adds a whole new demention to them. Great Job and design!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Beginning construction

I made a very rough prototype next out of some scrap pine. I won't explain the steps here, just thought the prototype would help you visualize what is happening. I wanted to resolve these steps without wasting a bunch of good wood. The inner color I just colored a bit with a marker to help see what the cherry might look like it as it was all pine.

https://flic.kr/p/5202583407
The next step I took is to mill out two contrasting woods to roughly equal size and thickness. In this case I chose ash and cherry as I like the value and color contrast and they are both nice woods to work with.

https://flic.kr/p/5199769925
I next took my trusty glue gun and fastened the two pieces together. I didn't use a lot of glue as I wanted to separate the pieces later. This was just a temporary hold. Another option would have been to glue them together with paper between them like some woodturners do.

https://flic.kr/p/5199771123
Now I took the pattern you saw earlier and cut out the two pieces and spray mounted them into position on the two layer block of wood.

https://flic.kr/p/5200366266
In the next post we will start sawing out the pieces on the bandsaw. By temporarily fastening the two boards together I will saw out two identical pieces that I can mix and match when I reglue to get the desired pattern.

Thanks for reading. Hope you are enjoying it!
Thanks Cozmo35.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Initial cuts of interior parts

We are now ready to begin sawing out our components. By hot gluing the two boards together this allows us to cut two identical pieces of each part so that they will fit properly.

Note that I am only sawing out the interior shapes of the cross at this point. This will allow me to have better control when re-gluing. Here the vertical piece has been cut out. Keep in mind that you must get the best cut possible. Be sure your blade is narrow enough that it can saw the curves without backing up to adjust the blade direction. Otherwise you won't get a good fit when you glue the contrasting boards together again.

Wood Stairs Flooring Hardwood Machine


Now I have cut out the horizontal piece. Save your waste pieces as they will be important when you get ready for gluing.

Wood Urban design Terrestrial plant Landscape Wood stain


I then separated the two woods that had been tacked together with hot melt glue

Wood Animal product Bumper Circle Natural material


I then inverted these pieces so that when I re-glue I will have pieces with the contrasting wood in them.

Plant Wood Font Rectangle Art


Keep in mind that by losing even a bandsaw blade width of wood the pieces may no longer fit perfectly. You will have to use your judgment and make slight adjustments by sanding or with a sharp chisel to get the best fit possible. I would recommend a dry fit of the part before applying glue.

Hand tool Tool Wood Metalworking hand tool Saw


This final photo shows the vertical cross section being glued and clamped. I forgot to take a pix when it was completely clamped so don't worry about the gaps. I decided to wait until that dried before fitting and gluing the smaller horizontal piece. That is it for this stage. Note that I have used the waste pieces as a way to more easily glue the curved shapes back together. Be sure to not put glue on those surfaces. After the glue dries we will unclamp and repeat the fitting and gluing of the smaller piece.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Gluing completion and cutout of outside shapes

So after the glue up dried on the larger piece, I clamped up the smaller interior piece giving attention to the fit as I did in the previous glue up of the large interior piece.

Wood Tool Engineering Calipers Composite material


Here is the piece unclamped. This shows the backside where the template was not seen.

Wood Natural material Flooring Grass Hardwood


Here is the same piece flipped over with part of the template still showing.

Wood Metal Art Soil Automotive exterior


I used a scraper to remove the worst of the glue on the bottom side so it would sit flat on the bandsaw and then starting cutting out the outside shapes. I sawed on the outside of the template line intending to sand it back to the line later.

Wood Table Bicycle tire Automotive tire Tool


Here the first piece is shown cut free.

Wood Flooring Art Hardwood Sleeve


Here is a top and bottom view of the cut free pieces.

Wood Terrestrial plant Natural material Metal Flowering plant


Natural material Wood Fashion accessory Metal Terrestrial plant


I had intended for the hot melt glue to grip little enough that at this point I could easily pry the two layers apart. No luck. It worked on my prototype but I must have used a bit more glue or something. So I went back to my trusty band saw and sawed them apart. Safety rant. Notice I set the guard only as high as I had to in order to make this cut. Setting it way high is an invitation to reduce the number of your fingers.

Wood Road surface Floor Flooring Hardwood


Here are my 4 pieces laid out now. I will use one set to finish the job and then later as time allows I will use the second set to make another similar cross that will have the colors inversed. Making two sets was the only way I could figure out to make the pieces fit and the bonus is that I get a bit more mileage for my work. If anyone has a better idea of how to do this I would love to hear about it!

Tableware Wood Wine glass Drinkware Barware


Well, that is all for this installment. Next time we will do the exact shaping sanding and begin to hand cut the shiplap joints to assemble the cross. Thanks for following along!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Layout and edge sanding

Here I have laid together the two identical/opposite pieces to see how they look. I toyed with the idea of swapping the two sets for more contrast but decided that would be confusing to a viewer.

Wood Terrestrial plant Flowering plant Plant stem Plywood


The next step is to edge sand the exact curves on the edges. You must do this before cutting your shiplap joints. If you cut the joints first and then sand the edges they will not fit properly. Be certain you have the sander base square to the sanding disk or you will have fit problems also. Be sure you use both hands. I had the sander off and the camera in my free hand for the photo, but not a good idea to actually sand it this way!

Wood Finger Automotive tire Adhesive Banknote


I did the first part of the sanding as shown above but then followed it up with a sanding disk in my drill press so I was not sanding cross grain.

Glove Wood Finger Wood stain Hardwood


In the next installment I will describe how to layout and cut the curved edge shiplap joints with only a few handtools and a lot of patience!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Beginning the shiplap joints

Wood Asphalt Road surface Beige Rectangle


After deciding exactly how you want your pieces to intersect carefully mark the location of the intersection points for later reference.

Wood Finger Art Tool Bird


Hold or clamp the pieces down firmly (I had to use my other hand to take the picture, but for real held the top piece in place with my other hand). Score a line along the curved edge where the pieces intersect with a utility knife. Don't try to cut very deeply or you will likely slip and mar the piece.

Repeat this process on the other side. I didn't take a photo of this but you can use the same process.

Wood Tool Bumper Auto part Wood stain


Use a square to mark a square line down the side so you will be able to keep the sides of your shiplap straight.

Automotive tire Wood Machine tool Gas Machine


I then went to my bandsaw and made a series of multiple cuts to half the thickness of the piece. This makes it easier to chisel out the majority of the dado before worrying about the curved edges. You could do this with a small backsaw if you don't have a bandsaw.

In the next post we will begin removing all the material with some careful work with a sharp chisel.
 

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Beginning the shiplap joints

Wood Asphalt Road surface Beige Rectangle


After deciding exactly how you want your pieces to intersect carefully mark the location of the intersection points for later reference.

Wood Finger Art Tool Bird


Hold or clamp the pieces down firmly (I had to use my other hand to take the picture, but for real held the top piece in place with my other hand). Score a line along the curved edge where the pieces intersect with a utility knife. Don't try to cut very deeply or you will likely slip and mar the piece.

Repeat this process on the other side. I didn't take a photo of this but you can use the same process.

Wood Tool Bumper Auto part Wood stain


Use a square to mark a square line down the side so you will be able to keep the sides of your shiplap straight.

Automotive tire Wood Machine tool Gas Machine


I then went to my bandsaw and made a series of multiple cuts to half the thickness of the piece. This makes it easier to chisel out the majority of the dado before worrying about the curved edges. You could do this with a small backsaw if you don't have a bandsaw.

In the next post we will begin removing all the material with some careful work with a sharp chisel.
BEAUTIFUL CROSS..
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Continuing the shiplap joints

Wood String instrument Road surface Automotive tire Tints and shades


Here is a top view after making the bandsaw cuts

Wood Finger Safety glove Gas Machine


Use your chisel to start cleaning out this section. It is a good idea to work from both outside edges towared the middle to not split out on your finished edges anywhere.

Wood Bumper Automotive tire Automotive exterior Flooring


Here I have pretty well cleaned out the easy part. Now on to the curves.

Automotive tire Wood Line Bumper Tool


I have chiseled away a few layers and continuing rescoring along the curved line and carefully removing material. You have to be really patient as the scoring does not go deep and you have to remove only that much material and then rescore. Keep checking against your vertical lines on the side of the piece so your dado descends at a true vertical and does not drift in or out or the fit will get sloppy or too small.

Wood Automotive exterior Bumper Wood stain Hardwood


Sorry for the blurry picture but you get the idea of carefully working your way down.

Wood Automotive exterior Gas Hardwood Bumper


The right side is done, now repeat the process on the left.

Your tall vertical piece is now complete. Next blog will be essentially the same process on the short horizontal piece.
 

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Continuing the shiplap joints

Wood String instrument Road surface Automotive tire Tints and shades


Here is a top view after making the bandsaw cuts

Wood Finger Safety glove Gas Machine


Use your chisel to start cleaning out this section. It is a good idea to work from both outside edges towared the middle to not split out on your finished edges anywhere.

Wood Bumper Automotive tire Automotive exterior Flooring


Here I have pretty well cleaned out the easy part. Now on to the curves.

Automotive tire Wood Line Bumper Tool


I have chiseled away a few layers and continuing rescoring along the curved line and carefully removing material. You have to be really patient as the scoring does not go deep and you have to remove only that much material and then rescore. Keep checking against your vertical lines on the side of the piece so your dado descends at a true vertical and does not drift in or out or the fit will get sloppy or too small.

Wood Automotive exterior Bumper Wood stain Hardwood


Sorry for the blurry picture but you get the idea of carefully working your way down.

Wood Automotive exterior Gas Hardwood Bumper


The right side is done, now repeat the process on the left.

Your tall vertical piece is now complete. Next blog will be essentially the same process on the short horizontal piece.
Kevin, You obviously put a lot of thought into this and it seems to be paying off!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Shiplap on horizontal piece

Road surface Wood Asphalt Line Floor


Now that the dado in the horizontal piece is complete put it temporarily in place over the vertical piece. The joint should be snug but neither loose or tight.

Wood Gesture Finger Thumb Tool


Score the lines for cutting the curves on the vertical piece.

Wood Road surface Asphalt Automotive exterior Automotive tire


You can see here the score lines ready to begin cutting.

Road surface Asphalt Wood Flag of the united states Automotive exterior


Repeat all the steps shown in earlier installments of the blog to create a dado in this piece that is 1/2 the depth of the lumber, etc. Here you see both pieces with the waste removed. They are ready to glue together in the next blog.
 

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Shiplap on horizontal piece

Road surface Wood Asphalt Line Floor


Now that the dado in the horizontal piece is complete put it temporarily in place over the vertical piece. The joint should be snug but neither loose or tight.

Wood Gesture Finger Thumb Tool


Score the lines for cutting the curves on the vertical piece.

Wood Road surface Asphalt Automotive exterior Automotive tire


You can see here the score lines ready to begin cutting.

Road surface Asphalt Wood Flag of the united states Automotive exterior


Repeat all the steps shown in earlier installments of the blog to create a dado in this piece that is 1/2 the depth of the lumber, etc. Here you see both pieces with the waste removed. They are ready to glue together in the next blog.
That is a fine looking cross. I am going to have to take a look at the earlier blogs.
 

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Shiplap on horizontal piece

Road surface Wood Asphalt Line Floor


Now that the dado in the horizontal piece is complete put it temporarily in place over the vertical piece. The joint should be snug but neither loose or tight.

Wood Gesture Finger Thumb Tool


Score the lines for cutting the curves on the vertical piece.

Wood Road surface Asphalt Automotive exterior Automotive tire


You can see here the score lines ready to begin cutting.

Road surface Asphalt Wood Flag of the united states Automotive exterior


Repeat all the steps shown in earlier installments of the blog to create a dado in this piece that is 1/2 the depth of the lumber, etc. Here you see both pieces with the waste removed. They are ready to glue together in the next blog.
Great series you have put together very informative.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Gluing, sanding and completion

Hand tool Snips Wire stripper Pruning shears Pliers


I brushed glue inside both of the dadoes and then clamped it together to dry.

Wood Beige Font Circle Art


Here is a view unclamped and with a bit of face sanding to clean it up. I forgot to take a picture after the final sanding, but basically rounded over the edges a bit and thinned the thickness a bit on the 4 ends.

Wheel Terrestrial plant Wood Creative arts Art


I put three or four coats of spray lacquer and hand rubbed to a nice satin finish. Here is a test hanging on the wall before shipping.

Happy to report that the customer said it exceeded her expectations. That is a great thing to hear!
 

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