Finished a spline jig - Router Forums
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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-24-2015, 11:52 PM Thread Starter
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Default Finished a spline jig

My wife is a budding artist, getting pretty good with oil and gorgeous color pencil work that looks like the Dutch masters still life paintings. But that means we are buying stretched canvasas and decorative frames. So its time to start making them. So today I put together a spline jig to build stronger frames and canvas stretchers.

Turned out really well. Here's pictures of the process. Started with a 3/4 ply base, then cut the front and back work rest to 45 degrees , plus a support for the back side of the work rest.

The assembly of that first support sets up the whole jig, so I assembled in using clamps, on top of an open trash container so the clamps had a place to get out of the way of the base and back. Counter sunk for screws and glued and screwed the pieces together. Perfect. (Put packing tape on the 2x to keep the squeeze out from sticking.)

Once that was done, I test fitted the back workpiece support onto the base to establish a center line, then used a drafting square to mark the line where the two 45 degree edges would join.

Then cut a grove for the T track across the back workpiece rest. Used slightly longer screws that went through the track into the back workpiece support for extra strength. Glue too, of course. Lots of extra glue for the plywood diagonal end edge joints.

Cut a short front support, 45 degrees, about 2.5 inches on the tall side. Butted the front workpiece support to the centerline to meet up to the edge of the back workpiece support. Used a pin nailer to hold everything in place while the glue dried. Clamping angles is not much fun...I used a small wooden triangle to square things up so I could clamp the angled pieces.

Used a drafting triangle to continually check for square as shown in the picture to set the angle of the front support so that front and back formed a perfect 90. Worked like a charm.

Cut a piece of hardwood to slightly shy of 3/8ths, and fitted it with a hand plane to fit the miter slot. Nickles raised it slightly. I waxed the table around and in the slots to keep the glue out, then glued them to the base after squaring the base to the slot.

Last, cut a piece of 1/2 Baltic Birch to form a vertical support. Glued it a piece of 3/4 ply with a hole drilled for a T nut and knob that slides in the T slot to position the workpiece above the blade. Triangles glued to the sliding pieces made it rigid and perfectly vertical.

The finished result is very cool. I was able to do the whole thing with cutoffs and stock already on hand.

Need to find a 1/8 inch kerf blade that leaves a flat groove. I think I saw a set of 2 blades, 1/8th kerf and 1/4 kerf. Combine them for a 3/8 groove. Any other suggestions for finding a good 1/8th blade? Doesn't have to be 10 inches. My Glueline blade has less than a 1/8th kerg.
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jw2170, rcp612, Belg and 8 others like this.

Last edited by DesertRatTom; 10-25-2015 at 12:03 AM.
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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 07:02 AM
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Hey Tom, I like that. I see that you have put a track for making adjustments. I also notice you have two miter rails to give more stability plus the support under the two 45s. Very well made. Have you used it yet. It looks like the slot the blade cut is pretty narrow. What type of blade is that. I think inlays that are narrow looks very nice.
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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 07:18 AM
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I keep seeing these jigs and thinking 'I need one of them'. Then I make the jig and wonder, 'where am I gonna store it now!'

Great jig Tom, and looks sturdy.

When everything around you is going to pot, get out in the workshop.
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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 07:58 AM
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I saw a video not too long ago where a biscuit cutter was used as a spline cutter. Just offering another option to accomplish the same task.




Or this was a more elaborate version.

https://www.canadianwoodworking.com/...ner-spline-jig

Last edited by Belg; 10-25-2015 at 09:24 AM. Reason: grammar
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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 08:50 AM
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Nice job Tom. The outside chippers on a dado set are supposed to be exactly 1/8". I also see quite a few blades that are advertised as .126 kerf which allows for some thin glue in the joint. All you need is a flat top grind in one of those. A couple of manufacturers are offering box joint sets with two blades that can cut 1/4" and 3/8" grooves which would offer you more variety. Freud Tools | 8" Box Joint Cutter Set

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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Cherryville Chuck View Post
Nice job Tom. The outside chippers on a dado set are supposed to be exactly 1/8". I also see quite a few blades that are advertised as .126 kerf which allows for some thin glue in the joint. All you need is a flat top grind in one of those. A couple of manufacturers are offering box joint sets with two blades that can cut 1/4" and 3/8" grooves which would offer you more variety. Freud Tools | 8" Box Joint Cutter Set
I had thought about the dado set. Will try it and see if it can make a really smooth cut. The jig should prevent chipout I saw the dual size set you mentioned and think that might be a good option. Thinking it through, I can see using replacable blocks as sacrificial backers when changing blade widths. Just raise the blade a little bit higher. Also thinking of making a version for the router table for decorative splines on boxes.
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post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kywoodchopper View Post
Hey Tom, I like that. I see that you have put a track for making adjustments. I also notice you have two miter rails to give more stability plus the support under the two 45s. Very well made. Have you used it yet. It looks like the slot the blade cut is pretty narrow. What type of blade is that. I think inlays that are narrow looks very nice.
Malcolm / Kentucky USA
The blade is a Freud Glue Line that cuts a flat bottomed groove, used it to construct everything because it makes such a smooth cut even on ply. Used it because there are at least 4, 45 degree cuts that are end glued to a flat surface. Used AMPLE glue on those edges and let them sit for a couple of hours to cure. The two diagonal supports look different, but are actually the result of a single cut. Same with the vertical supports. The back support takes the brunt of the stress, so I placed the T track so that the screws holding it in place go through to reinforce the support connection.

Hint, I cut the front support (the short, vertical piece) to an estimated height and pushed it forward and back at glue up with the 90 on the triangle in the V in order to get it exactly sqare. Locked it all down once square. That gave me a little wiggle room. Thinking the project through took a lot more time than building it.

The vertical fence give plenty of room to clamp the workpiece down. I only used glue on that since it is so close to thhe cut line. I laterr cut a little off width of the fence backer with the knob on it because the two glued in triangles are what hold it square.
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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 11:22 AM
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Nice work, Tom! I like your Job too much, and the way you explains it, really makes easily understood! Congrats!
Sid.
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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
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Today I'm going to start on a miter sled. Once its done I can start making canvas stretchers and frames for my honey and start earing husband points. Seems that the ability ot have a movable stop block is really critical. Torn between a taller designn vs one that uses an aluminum rule that is much shorter. Frames to hold stretcherr mounted canvases have to be close to 2 inches thick to allow for inlays, shaping and copeing so I'm inclined to makke the taller version and not worry about the rule. I was thinking of using hardwood for the V shaped supports, but it might be easier cut and layerr ply. I have some cutoffs from my workbench project that are 1.5 inches thick that would probably be perrfect for that job. I may just assemble a stop block that slides on one of the two rails from the same materrial, with a bridge on top linking two pieces, then use a T nut and bolt to lock it in place.

One other option is to make thinner frames and glue on a small piece on the back to create a "rabbit' into which the stretched canvas fits. might be easierr, but could create a problem with finishing the edges.

Custom made frames to match the tone and style of the painting is a great finishing touch for artwork and also makes it easier to sell. That's why if you watch Antiques Roadshow, the always have positve comments when the frame is original.
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Last edited by DesertRatTom; 10-25-2015 at 11:29 AM. Reason: correction
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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old 10-25-2015, 01:49 PM
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nice looking jig Tom.

Mike
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