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I coworker of mine has asked me to recreate his window surround because they are currently made of vinyl and his wife doesn't like them and would prefer wood. Creating the basic oval and cutting it out weren't a very big deal but now I am confused on how to create the profile that is on the surface. He says it doesn't have to be exact but he would like it to be close. Thank you
Wood Wood stain Hardwood Oval Plywood
 

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The profile can be done using different sized cove bits in a router, mounted in a (temporary ?) table. Do it before cutting out the center of your piece.

Drill holes in your table (or temporary surface) the correct radius for each cut and insert a peg. Then drill a hole in the center of your piece to fit over the peg. Turn the piece around the peg to cut the profiles.

Be sure to hold the piece tightly to avoid chatter, otherwise sanding will be more difficult than it needs to be. It's always good practice to practice first on a scrap piece until you're sure you've got the procedure down.

It might be a good idea to use a scrap plywood disk between the piece and your hands, not only to protect your hands but to help hold the piece flat on the table and to give it more beef. If the two pieces tend to slip, try using a piece of rubber drawer liner material between them or screwing them together.

Be sure to wax the table surface. Don't try to cut the entire depth at once. Take it slow but steady. If it tends to burn you may have to up your speed a bit. Good luck and have fun.
 

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These are usually done with a moulding machine capable of making round and elliptical shapes. The Williams and Hussey machine comes to mind. While there may be other ways to do this, I have no experience in doing it any other way.
 

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They're pricey, and pretty limited in what they can do, but if you're in that business one could be invaluable.
 

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Drill holes in your table (or temporary surface) the correct radius for each cut and insert a peg. Then drill a hole in the center of your piece to fit over the peg. Turn the piece around the peg to cut the profiles.

- Yonak
Trouble with this is--he's got an oval shape, not a circle. There is no "correct radius". The lathe solution is problematic for the same reason.

You might be able to use two pegs like a fence in a router table-(or two bearing points attached to a fence)-the cut will vary some as the curve changes, but you should be able to "feather out" the difference with sandpaper, scrapers, ...
 

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If you don't use a scratch stock
(Search also on Paul Sellers blog and on "the village carpenter" blog for scratch stock)

You will find various electric router jig to make ellipses here on Lumberjock; some where the router moves others where the board moves under a fixed router.
 

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Drill holes in your table (or temporary surface) the correct radius for each cut and insert a peg. Then drill a hole in the center of your piece to fit over the peg. Turn the piece around the peg to cut the profiles.

- Yonak

Trouble with this is--he s got an oval shape, not a circle. There is no "correct radius". The lathe solution is problematic for the same reason.

You might be able to use two pegs like a fence in a router table-(or two bearing points attached to a fence)-the cut will vary some as the curve changes, but you should be able to "feather out" the difference with sandpaper, scrapers, ...

- jerryminer
Sorry .. missed the part about it being an ellipse and not a circle.
 

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I'm thinking jerryminer has the solution I'd most likely try, with the two pegs. Otherwise, I might try a single peg on the inside of the oval - the trick here would be to keep a relative perpendicularity (if there's such a thing) with the cutter. Now, as to getting the actual profiles - sheesh, that could be a bother unless you have a mad selection of cutters. This is where Mattias Wandel's tilting router table would probably be useful.
 

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Handholding your router, you could make a guide to follow with the edge of your router plate, based on the distance between the outer edge of your router plate and the center of the router, being the midpoint of the grooves in your piece. This guide would be the exact shape of your grooves and larger exactly by the distance from the center to the edge of your router.

The problem with the one-peg method, as you correctly point out, is it's nearly impossible to have the piece constantly oriented so that the cut is always the correct distance from the peg and it will turn out wavy.

The only problem with the two peg method is, the farther the pegs are apart, the less your cut will follow the edge of the piece, yet the closer they are together, the less control you will have. It's worth a try but practice, practice, practice .. whatever you decide do.

Regarding the router bit, it's kind of hard for me to see the exact proflie, but it could be that one cove bit could make all the cuts. As you said at the start, the profile doesn't have to be exact so you could just decide that one bit would work, with different distances between the cuts and the edge. Practice will show which direction to feed the stock. Be careful.
 
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